H-1B Cap Lottery Selection Rate Drops Significantly and What’s Next?

Written by Stephen Blaker

On March 30, 2021, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced that it had completed its cap lottery selection of H-1B registrations for the fiscal year (FY) 2022. Employers submitted 308,613 registrations for selection in the cap lottery, of which USCIS selected 87,500 cases, or 28% of the total number of registrations. This is a significant decrease from the FY 2021 in which 274,237 registrations were received and 124,415, or 45%, were selected. The sharp decrease in selection rate was due in part to USCIS adjusting its method to determine the number of successful petitions needed to reach the annual cap of 85,000.

Not Selected – What’s Next?

Selected registrants must submit their petitions by June 30, 2021. If the number of FY 2022 petitions falls short due to cases that are denied, rejected, withdrawn, or revoked, USCIS may run a second round of selection to meet any remaining unused H-1B visas sometime before September 30, 2021.

Didn’t get selected for FY 2022? There may be various alternative visa options such as visas for international students or high-level managers, family sponsorships, spousal visas, and more. Please reach out to your contact within MSK’s Immigration department to discuss your individual options or if you have any questions. 

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