USICS Announces Number of H-1B Petitions Received for 2024 Fiscal Year

USICS Announces Number of H-1B Petitions Received for 2024 Fiscal Year
December 26, 2023

The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) made an announcement concerning the congressionally mandated cap for the 2024 fiscal year. According to the USCIS, it received the number of petitions needed to meet this cap. As a result, there will not be a third H-1B lottery selection for the fiscal year.

This announcement includes 65,000 visa numbers under the regular cap and the 20,000 set aside for holders of advanced degrees. Furthermore, the USCIS announced that it received over 780,000 registrations from employers. In addition, over half of the employers submitted for workers with multiple registrations. This number marked a significant increase over previous fiscal years.

However, the sharp increase in submissions and many redundant registrations raised concerns about possible attempts to rig the electronic selection process. Since 2019, the agency has used an electronic system to select from the registrations filed by employers. This system chooses which applications may proceed with an actual petition for an H-1B visa.

In October, the USCIS issued a set of proposed regulations for the system. The agency did this to address the potential shortcomings in the system that could allow for fraud. These regulations would significantly change the lottery selection system. For example, the USCIS proposed basing selections on individual beneficiaries rather than each registration. This change would give each beneficiary an equal chance no matter how many employers file a registration.

As has been the case in previous fiscal years, the USCIS can fall short on its initial selection. Falling below expectations like this often happens when the agency does not receive enough successful petitions to meet the congressional cap. In July, the USCIS missed this mark. As a result, the agency selected an additional 77,609 qualifying registrations. This addition is substantially greater than past selection numbers for a second lottery. With this announcement from the USCIS, a third lottery will not be needed.

However, the USCIS will continue accepting and processing petitions exempt from the cap. These petitions include those already counted against a cap and retain a third previously issued cap number. The USCIS will also accept petitions to adjust the time an H-1B worker may remain in the U.S., an H-1B worker’s terms of employment, or allow a worker to change employer or work concurrently in another qualifying position.

With the closing of the selection process for the 2024 fiscal year, employers should consider preparing for the next election cycle. While doing this, they should also focus on compliance. One often overlooked area is the employment eligibility verification process (Form I-9). A Form I-9 management system can help guide personnel through each step, provide digital storage, and ensure a uniform and compliant form with each new hire.

Increase your hiring and verification efficiency today with I-9 Compliance automation.