How To Apply For a Cap-Exempt Position?

The annual quota for H1B Visas has been met for 2016, which is capped at 65,000 visas awarded. Unfortunately, there are far more petitions submitted than can be approved each year. For applicants that were not successful, there are a few avenues available to secure an H1B this year, such as re-applying for the visa with a cap exempt position.

Educational, Non-profit and Research Institution Positions

There are four basic categories of cap-exempt positions, meaning that as long as your position meets all of the H1B visa requirements, you will be awarded the visa. There is no cap for these positions, and it may be easier than you think to find a job that relates to these areas.

Employed at an institution of higher education

Jobs at colleges and universities will be cap exempt as long as the institution is qualified and accredited. Those positions could include teaching, administration or other support personnel directly employed by the university.

Non-profit affiliates of higher education institutions

Some universities will have non-profit affiliates, such as a teaching hospital for a medical degree program. Jobs at these affiliates are cap-exempt as well, but the affiliation has to be established, through some ownership or control by the university.

Employed at a non-profit or government research organization

Research positions for government agencies are also cap-exempt. This exemption also applies to non-profits that pursue scientific or other types of research.

Have an employer that supports or promotes a cap-exempt institution

This may be the category that offers the broadest opportunity to find a cap-exempt position. To qualify, the job must support or promote a cap-exempt institution, even if not directly employed by it.  

Exploring relationships and organizational affiliations could uncover many different types of jobs that have the potential to be cap-exempt. Most applicants will look for assistance with finding this position, since the relationship will depend on the unique facts and type of work.

What Are The Steps to Obtain a Cap-Exempt Visa?

  1. Timing: The good news is that a cap-exempt H1B visa position can be submitted at any time during the year. There is no filing deadline, as well as no numerical limit.
  2. Get the Position: Just as with standard petitions, the job offer must be obtained and verified as related to your degree and area of study.
  3. Employer Petition: The employer has to submit the position on your behalf, showing that the job is cap-exempt and that you meet all of the H1B visa requirements.
  4. Wait for Approval: Even though there is no deadline to submit applications, you will have to wait for the petition to be approved to be sure that you will qualify.
  5. Begin Work: There is no waiting period to start work once the cap-exempt H1B visa has been approved. You can begin work at any time during the year once the petition is approved and you have a valid visa.

If you have questions about how to find a cap-exempt position for an H1B visa, please contact us and we can help you with this one option to avoid the limitations of the annual visa cap.

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  • April 14th, 2016
  • 16

16 thoughts on “How To Apply For a Cap-Exempt Position?”

  1. I do not know whether it is the correct place to ask my question but, I do need some clarity regarding my H1B visa.
    I had worked for an reputated MNC in India,Hyderabad. I got my H1B visa approved and due to some personal family issues, i did not travel to US. After that I resigned from my services for some personal issues. Meanwhile my visa period expired( I got the visa only for 8-9 months).I am a home maker now. Will I come under H1B cap exempt now? My visa expired in 2013 and LCA in 2015 which is for 3 years. If i need to raise an H1 now, what will be my position, do i need to start for a fresh one in the next cap or can i apply for cap exempt because i heard that H1B once approved will be valid for 6 years provided we if we raise for an LCA extension for more three years. Please do let me know your valuable suggestion.

  2. Dear Sir/Medam;
    How to find a cap-exempt position for an H1B visa. I am interested work in USA. I am completed my B.TECH with Electronics and Communication Engineering(ECE).
    My hopes are work in USA. You have support and help me sir/medam.
    My contact number: +601117854906.

  3. Hi,

    I am Network Engineer from New Delhi India, But search a IT jobs direct employer and sponsorship in US.
    Please guide me.

    Vijay Shanker

  4. Hi Sir,

    I had 5 years experience in IT. Please kindly let me know how can i apply for h1b exempted category.

  5. Hello Sir / Madam,

    I have Master’s Degree in Commerce, Specialization Human Resource Management and Marketing. So, how are the chances for me of getting hired by a US University or Company and qualifying for H1B visa?

    Please do let me know your valuable suggestions.

    Thanking you.

    Warm Regards,

  6. Hello,
    I’m currently in USA on H4 visa. My H! petition didn’t get picked up in lottery this year. I’m IT Project manager with 18 years of experience. Can you guide me how to contact cap exempt employers ?

    I’m based out of Atlanta.

  7. Hi My name is Rutu Shah.
    I am an international student working on my OPT right now. I have done masters with fashion merchandising and retails management. I am a non stem student. My OPT is expiring next year and my current employer is not filling my H1B. I am very much interested in research and development feild in fashion, textiles, colors, trends etc. At the same time my visa are important to me, I am looking for any NGO or Higher education institution who can file my H1b. Can you suggest me if there is any? in my field? it would be a great help.


  8. Hi, The post was very informative. I am in the US attending college on an F1 visa. I joined as a Graduate assistant in the HR department here and they want me to work full time and take classes in the night. They said they would file for H1(I think it’s the cap-exempt H1 visa). But It’s been only two months since I started college and I don’t have a masters degree.

    Is it possible for them to apply the H1 before I complete my master’s program or do I have to wait till I finish my education and then ask them to apply?

    Any information would be helpful and appreciated.
    Thank you.

  9. Hi I am currently on h4 visa in US and would like to know the procedure to apply for a job to get cap exempt visa. Kindly assist.

  10. Hi,
    Have not file for H1b as I am on a B2
    Would like to work in a ngo, can I file for cap exempt and need to know of relevant openings.
    Been 9 years as data analysis, reporting, web and e-commerce solutions.
    Do let me know.

  11. Hi,I have 5+ years of IT experience and in H4 right now in US.Please let me know the cap exempt options that I can apply.

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