In March 2023, the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) conducted a random selection process for the FY 2024 H-1B cap, including beneficiaries eligible for the advanced degree exemption. The initial filing period for selected registrations was from April 1, 2023, through June 30, 2023.
Recently, USCIS announced the need to select additional registrations to meet the FY 2024 H-1B numerical allocations. They have now randomly selected a sufficient number of registrations from the remaining pool to reach the cap. All prospective petitioners with selected registrations from this round have been notified and are eligible to file an H-1B cap-subject petition for the beneficiary named in the registration.
Previously, employers had to submit full and often voluminous H-1B cap-subject petitions during a five-day filing period, which led to unnecessary paperwork and mailing costs. USCIS states in its announcement that the electronic registration system has improved efficiency for both petitioners and USCIS and saved costs on both ends – which is true.
During the initial registration period for the FY 2024 H-1B cap, USCIS experienced a significant rise in the number of registrations submitted compared to previous years. There was an increase in the number of registrations submitted overall, including registrations for beneficiaries with multiple registrations and those with only one registration. This trend of increasing registrations was observed in the FY 2022 and FY 2023 H-1B registration periods as well. The chart provided displays registration and selection figures for fiscal years 2021 to 2024, as of July 31, 2023.
|Cap Fiscal Year||Total Registrations||Eligible Registrations*||Eligible Registrations for Beneficiaries with No Other Eligible Registrations||Eligible Registrations for Beneficiaries with Multiple Eligible Registrations||Selections**|
*The count of eligible registrations excludes duplicate registrations, those deleted by the prospective employer prior to the close of the registration period, and those with failed payments.
** The number of initial selections for FY 2024 – 110,791 – was smaller in than in prior years primarily due to (a) establishing a higher anticipated petition filing rate by selected registrants based on prior years; and (b) higher projected Department of State approvals of H-1B1 visas, which count against the H-1B cap.
Based on evidence from the FY 2023 and FY 2024 H-1B cap seasons, USCIS has already undertaken extensive fraud investigations, denied and revoked petitions accordingly, and continues to make law enforcement referrals for criminal prosecution.
USCIS believes that the decreased filing rate for FY 2024 H-1B cap petitions as compared to the three previous fiscal years indicates that these investigations are having an impact.USCIS, August 2023
For additional information on the H-1B cap season, visit the USCIS H-1B Cap Season webpage.