Applying for H1B Cap? Avoid these Pitfalls

If you are applying for H1B in April this year, here are some important lessons from 2017 to keep in mind. The level of scrutiny increased significantly in 2017, resulting in a lot of RFEs and subsequent denials. We expect the situation to be the same this year, if not worse. Here are some items to watch out for: 

Master's Quota

If you are applying under Master's quota, make sure that your schoolqualifies as an accredited and non-profit institution. Just because others got approved from the same school under Master's quota doesn't mean anything; it was simply an oversight by the USCIS officer. You could be denied now, or you could be denied anytime in the future while applying for H1B amendments/extensions, since the original H1 was based on a non-qualifying school. It is not worth the risk, you should stick to the regular quota.

Level 1

If your employer is filing your LCA as Level 1, there is a good chance that you will get an RFE if you are working at a client location. The USCIS is contesting that a level 1 person needs high level of supervision, and is not qualified to work at a client location without direct supervision by the employer. Make sure your employer uses at least Level 2, even though the wage levels are higher.

Computer Systems Analyst

Filing your LCA as a Computer Systems Analyst was very common in the past, since the required H1B wages are lower than Computer Programmers or Software Developers. But nearly 100% of the applications filed as Computer Systems Analysts received an RFE in 2017. USCIS contends that anyone with some training can do this job, and as such, it is not a speciality occupation.


Historically, applying for IT related H1B with a degree in Mechanical/Civil/Business etc. was very common, and was not a major issue. Those days are gone. Your degree has to be directly related to and required for your job. Otherwise, you can expect RFEs and denials.

Multiple Applications

To increase their chances in the lottery, applicants make multiple H1B petetions.

What is acceptable:

  • You can apply for multiple H1Bs through unrelated companies, provided they all have legitimate positions.
  • Two related companies can also file for you, but they must each be prepared to establish that there was a legitimate, actual business need for filing both of the petitions. Else both applications will be denied.

What is NOT acceptable:

  • Multiple H1B petitions filed by different companies for the same position at the same end-client with the same beneficiary. USCIS can deny such cases based on evidence that the employers colluded to increase their odds in the lottery.


If your dependents are currently outside the US, and plan to enter the US after your H1B approval - H4 can be applied after your H1 approval.

If your dependent is currently in the US on a dependent status based on your current F1, like F2, you are required to apply for their H4 status along with your H1 application. Otherwise, your dependent will become out of status the moment your H1 is approved (because you F1 status doesn't exist after that, meaning your dependent won't have a F2 status either).

How can we help?

We have an excellent track record of placing OPT candidates on projects and successfully obtaining H1B for all our employees on client projects. We have a 98% success rate on our H1B approvals over the last few years. If you are an OPT looking for training and placement, along with H1B and eventual Greencard processing, please contact us. Use the calendar at the bottom of this page to schedule an appointment with one of our experienced recruiters so that you can discuss your options.

Discuss your OPT/H1B questions with our experienced recruiters (We are looking only for candidates with IT degrees) 


(Use the calendar below to schedule a phone appointment)