USCIS Reaches Fiscal Year 2022 H1-B Cap

After conducting three separate lotteries for the FY 2022 H1-B cap-subject petitions, USCIS has finally reached the congressionally mandated 85,000 limit for the fiscal year. This includes the 65,000 H1-B visa regular cap and the 20,000 H1-B visa U.S. advanced degree exemption, known as the master’s cap. 

In total, USCIS received 308,613 H1-B applications.

What Does Reaching The H1-B Cap Mean?

USCIS limits a total of 85,000 petitions each year for foreign workers to be sponsored to work in the US. By March, each year, prospective petitioners complete putting their name into the hat to be selected through a random lottery. After conducting 3 such lotteries, USCIS has received a sufficient number of petitions needed to reach the congressionally mandated total applications. 

What Are The Next Steps?

USCIS will notify these chosen applicants about their selection. For others, USCIS will send non-selection notifications to registrants’ online accounts. The status for registrations properly submitted for the FY 2022 H-1B numerical allocations, but that were not selected, will now show:

  • Not Selected: Not selected – not eligible to file an H1-B cap petition based on this registration.

Didn’t Get Picked In The H1-B 2022 Lottery? Here Are Some Alternative Visa Options

Does This Mean USCIS Won’t Accept Anymore H1-B Petitions?

In a statement released by USCIS, they said that they will continue accepting and processing certain petitions. However, these have to be exempt from the cap. These exempted petitioners include petitions filed for current H-1B workers who have been counted previously against the cap, and who still retain their cap number. 

The following petitions filed will be accepted for processing – 

  • H1-B extension: Extend the amount of time a current H-1B worker may remain in the US;
  • Change the terms of employment for current H1-B workers;
  • Allow current H1-B workers to change employers; and
  • Allow current H1-B workers to work concurrently in additional H1-B positions.

NEXT: H1-B Cap-subject For FY 2023

The FY 2023 H-1B cap-subject registration has opened on March 1, 2022. And will be available until 12:00 PM Eastern Standard Time (EST), March 18 2022. 

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