FY2013 H-1B filing for cap-subject petitions with an employment start date of October 01, 2012, opens on April 01, 2012. Cap-subject employers should prepare for FY2013 filing as soon as possible on or after that date for employment beginning in the coming fiscal year, as we expect to reach the FY2013 H-1B cap much more quickly than in the last few years given the apparent upturn in the US economy and probable increased demand for foreign workers.
Congress has established an annual H-1B cap (quota) for each US government fiscal year. For FY2013, which begins October 01, 2012, and ends September 30, 2013, the cap for regular H-1B petitions (for H-1B workers who do not have an advanced degree from a US institution) is 65,000. The annual H-1B cap for those with an advanced degree from a US institution is 20,000.
All new H-1B petitions for United States employers other than US government research entities or employers affiliated with academic institutions are subject to the annual H-1B cap. Note that current H-1B workers who obtained an initial H-1B with sponsorship from a cap-exempt employer, and who have not subsequently worked for a cap-subject employer, are subject to the annual cap if they change to a cap subject employer.