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USCIS Reopens FY 2022 H-1B Lottery for Third Time

29 Nov

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) recently announced that it conducted in November an unprecedented third round random lottery of H-1B cap registrations that were submitted in March 2021 for the fiscal year 2022 H-1B lottery. USCIS notified employers that have H-1B cap registrations which were selected and so are eligible to file H-1B petitions. As with cases selected in the initial lottery in March, and the subsequent lottery in July, USCIS is providing a 90-day filing window for the now-eligible H-1B petition submissions.   
As reported in a prior Immigration Update, registrations that were not initially selected in the first two rounds of the H-1B lottery were to remain in the system for the remainder of the fiscal year. USCIS held these registrations in the event that the initial round of selections ultimately resulted in an insufficient number of H-1B petition filings.   

USCIS began updating their registration system on November 19th to indicate that previously unselected registrations were now selected, and it sent email notifications in connection with these updates. No announcement has yet been made regarding the number of new selections in this second round of the lottery nor when the current selection window will close. Given the record 275,000 registrations submitted for this year’s lottery and the annual quota of 85,000 H-1B numbers, the probability that a previously unselected registration will be selected in this third round, or any future round is likely small.  

Unselected registrations have not yet been designated as rejected in USCIS’ system, so the possibility of an additional round of selections does exist. Foster recommends that employers continue to monitor their emails closely for notifications from USCIS of H-1B registration selections. Foster will continue to monitor the situation for any developments.   

For more information regarding potential alternatives to H-1B classification, contact your Foster immigration attorney. We will be glad to aid in determining whether a candidate may qualify for one of these nonimmigrant classifications. Additionally, Foster recommends considering which candidates and employees that the company may wish to sponsor for an H-1B next year with the next H-1B cap registration in early March 2022. We will provide additional updates on H-1B cap adjudications via our firm’s website at