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International Student Services


Cap Gap OPT

Cap Gap OPT is for individuals who are on OPT and have an employer who has petitioned for their H-1B visas. Read below to learn more.

What is the Cap Gap OPT Extension?

The cap refers to the limit on the number of individuals who can receive H-1B status every fiscal year. For example, for the period between October 1, 2015 and September 30, 2016, U.S. law limits, or caps, the number of individuals who may receive H-1B status to 65,000 (and an additional 20,000 for advanced degree levels). The gap is the period between the end of an individual’s F-1 status and the beginning of the individual’s H-1B status.

Am I Eligible for the Cap Gap OPT Extension?

If your OPT ends between April and October of the year in which your H-1B is filed, and your H-1B petition is selected from the lottery, then your OPT will be automatically extended. For more detailed information, see the USCIS website or the Study in the States website. The USCIS website is particularly detailed and helpful.