H-1B quota update...what's going on with the H-1B cap? Just updated today, the USCIS now reports that as of August 14, 2009, about 45,000 cap-subject cases have been received. So that's about 100 more than what USCIS reported a week ago.
Based on what USCIS has reported in the last 4 months, this seems to be a pattern. Up by 100, down by 100. Whatever the reason, H-1B season remains open! At some point, cases already counted in the queue can also be denied, so that might keep the quota open longer.
As for the advanced degree cap, commonly called the "advanced degree quota," USCIS tells us in their most recent H-1B quota update that they have collected approximately 20,000 applications. However, the USCIS reports that they will still continue to accept master's (advanced) degree cases until the quota has been filled.
Something that I counsel clients about is that there are also cap-exempt cases that can be filed. However, the only quota-exempt cases that are accepted are those filed by employers that are bona fide non-profit organizations, which have a documentable relationship with US colleges or universities. Granted this is a small exception, many clients have found this to be useful when working around the quota. Plus, filing fees are cheaper! --ecf