The Million Dollar question – Would the number of H1B Visa registrations for FY 2024 reach 1 Million Registrations?
Due to Mass Tech Layoffs, is there a possibility that USICS will not receive reach the cap in the registration window?
Important Dates for H1B Visa FY 2024 :
- Registration Opens: March 1, 2023 (Wednesday)
- Registration Closes: March 17, 2023 (Friday)
Overview of the H1B Visa Lottery
Each year, the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) receives tens of thousands of H1B visa applications from employers who want to hire foreign workers with specialized skills.
However, there is a cap on the number of H1B visas issued yearly.
The cap was set at 85,000 visas:
- 65,000 reserved for bachelor’s degrees or higher, and
- 20,000 reserved for applicants with advanced degrees.
See the following announcement from USCIS: Do you see anything interesting (I highlighted it).
USCIS started calling the Advanced Degree Cap a Masters’s Cap!
Given the number of applications received each year, the USCIS has to use a lottery system to select which applications will be processed.
The lottery system is designed to be random, ensuring all applicants have an equal chance of being selected.
Have you seen how the 11 PM Lottery Draw on your TV – the Power Ball or Mega Millions?
I imagine something like that (but a giant machine!) that picks about 120,000 numbers (over 10 or 11 lottery numbers).
The H1B visa lottery process is divided into two stages: the regular cap lottery and the advanced degree exemption lottery.
The regular cap lottery includes all H1B visa applications not qualifying for the advanced degree exemption. The advanced degree exemption lottery includes all applications filed by foreign workers with advanced degrees from U.S. universities.
For FY 2022, we received 308,613 H-1B registrations and initially selected 87,500 registrations projected as needed to reach the FY 2022 numerical allocations. We conducted a second selection in July 2021 of an additional 27,717 registrations due to low filing volume from the initial selection. We also conducted a third selection in November 2021 of an additional 16,753 registrations. This resulted in a total of 131,970 selected registrations for FY22.
For FY 2023, we received 483,927 H-1B registrations and selected 127,600 registrations projected as needed to reach the FY 2023 numerical allocations. Those with selected registrations had their myUSCIS accounts updated to include a selection notice, which includes details about when and where to file.
Regular Cap H1B Lottery
The regular cap lottery is conducted first.
If more than 65,000 applications are received during this period, USCIS conducts a lottery to select 65,000 petitions for processing randomly.
Advanced Degree Exemption Lottery
After the regular cap lottery is conducted, USCIS conducts the advanced degree exemption lottery. This lottery includes all H1B visa applications from foreign workers with advanced degrees from U.S. universities.
USCIS first selects 20,000 applications from this pool. Then, any applications not selected in the advanced degree exemption lottery are added to the regular cap lottery pool, giving them another chance to be selected.
Impact of the H1B Visa Lottery on Foreign Workers and U.S. Employers
The H1B visa lottery process has a significant impact on foreign workers and U.S. employers.
For foreign workers, the lottery process means there is no guarantee that they can work in the United States under the H1B visa program.
This can be particularly frustrating for workers who have invested time and money in pursuing education and training in specialized fields.
For U.S. employers, the lottery process means there is no guarantee that they will be able to hire the foreign workers they need to fill specialized positions. This can be particularly challenging for employers in industries such as technology and engineering, where there is a high demand for workers with specialized skills.
Submitting H1B Visa Via Multiple Employers Applying
This is one of the controversial topics among H1B Visa applicants.
Here’s a random unverified post:
Hi, Don’t ever file multiple H1B registrations. He has filed multiple, even after repeatedly telling my employer to file one registration. I had told him multiple times being a master’s cap student, I needed only one.
When I went to the Chennai Consulate, they found multiple registrations in my name. They called me three times for an H1B interview, and all three times, I was given a 221g slip. They even took a sworn statement to write down my history in the US and how many companies filed my petition. I did not admit to filing multiple petitions. As I said, I am unaware of what happened in the backend. I wrote they might have but did not tell me, So I don’t know what happened in the backend. So, Please do not file multiple registrations. They are going after people aggressively who file multiple petitions.
1 Million H1B Visa 2024 Registrations?
Would it be possible for H1B Visa registration to hit 1 Million this year?
My guess – is we would see more than 500,000 for sure. Perhaps it could be as high as 600,000 registrations.
Why? I think unless USCIS. Limits one registration per Passport Number; it is just a numbers game.
There is no public announcement of cracking down on multiple registrations.
And by the Law, I think they cannot limit to one entry per person!
When it comes to Immigration, follow the law of the land.
You can’t say I’m doing what my friends are doing with filing multiple Registrations to increase the odds of selection in the lottery with duplicate petitions.
I have heard stories where a “consultant” supposedly filed multiple applications behind the back (without letting the employee know) through their subsidiaries. USCIS found out about the relationship between the employers, and they denied all the registrations.
When will the H1B Visa 2024 Dates?
In the past, USCIS published the lottery results on a Friday (evening).
If the same trend holds, Lottery results could be published on March 24 or March 31, 2023 (Friday).
Good luck with your H1B Visa lottery registrations.