April 9, 2007
USCIS announced today that the 15-day Premium Processing period will only start after the petition has been selected for processing under the random selection process. USCIS still has no estimate as to when the random selection process will be concluded, nor whether the 20,000 additional H-1Bs reserved for holders of a US master's or Ph.D. degree have been exhausted.
Additionally, USCIS announced last Thursday that it actually received approximately 133,000 unique pieces of mail containing H-1B petitions. This figure is lower than the original estimate of 150,000, but each piece of mail may contain more than one H-1B petition.