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What is a Master’s degree exemption for the purposes of H-1B visa?

By July 23, 2020May 20th, 2021H-1B and E-3 Visa, Immigration
Immigration and Business Law

The H-1B visa is a non-immigrant visa that permits a company to hire workers in specialty occupations.

There are a limited number of H-1B petitions that USCIS can adjudicate every year – 65,000 Regular Cap petitions as set by the U.S. Congress. Please note that there are certain cap-exempt employers that are not counted towards the numerical limitations mentioned above. Please find more information on cap exempt companies here.

Students who have earned a Master’s or higher degree (for example a doctorate degree such as M.D., PH.D, J.D.) from a U.S. institution of higher education are exempt from the 65,000 H-1B visa camp. There are 20,000 spots reserved for individuals who earned a Master’s or higher degree form a U.S. institution of higher education. Once the 20,000 cap is reached, the Master’s H-1B registrations are subject to the 65,000 cap.

Please note that a Master’s degree is defined as a degree that is at least one level higher than a Bachelor’s degree, which is the essential component of a “masters or higher” degree.

Please click here if you want to find out more about the H-1B application process.

Please click here if you want to read more about the cap-gap extension.

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