U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) received 308,613 H-1B registrations in March and selected 87,500 to submit H-1B petitions for the 2022 fiscal year, the agency announced Thursday.

Key Points:

  • The 308,613 H-1B registrations marked a 12.5% increase over the 274,237 from last year.
  • The annual quota for cap-subject petitions is 85,000, 20,000 of which are exclusively for U.S. advanced degree holders (the “master’s cap”). Roughly 48% of the FY 2022 registrations were for candidates with U.S. advanced degrees.
  • USCIS said it used “historical data related to approvals, denials, revocations, and other relevant factors” to determine how many registrations to select.
  • Last year, the agency conducted a second H-1B lottery in August and invited employers to submit petitions for some registrations that were not initially selected. The initial 90-day filing period for FY 2022 H-1B petitions remains open. USCIS said it continues to monitor filing rates this year to determine whether it will need to select additional registrations to meet the FY 2022 numerical limitations.

BAL Analysis: The USCIS data demonstrates the ongoing popularity of the H-1B program and continued high demand for the limited annual number of visas. Employers are encouraged to work with their BAL attorney to consider alternatives for registrations that were not selected in March’s lottery. BAL will also continue to monitor the possibility that USCIS will invite more registrants to submit H-1B petitions for FY 2022.

This alert has been provided by Berry Appleman & Leiden. For additional information, please contact berryapplemanleiden@bal.com.

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