Ready, Set, Go . . . H-1B FY2025 Lottery Registration Dates Announced with Process Changes

Employers wishing to sponsor a candidate for an H-1B visa in Fiscal Year (FY) 2025 are approaching an important time of year. United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) recently announced the H-1B cap lottery registration period will open on March 6, 2024, at noon Eastern Standard Time and close on March 22, 2024, at noon Eastern Standard Time. USCIS also announced several changes that will implemented in this year’s registration process.

H-1B cap lottery registration was introduced in FY 2021 and is an annual electronic process through which USCIS receives registrations from employers for the H-1B lottery. Registrants are selected at random for an opportunity to fill one of the H-1B cap positions. USCIS has historically conducted a random H-1B lottery due to the increasing demand for H-1B visas each year. The H-1B visa category is generally limited to 65,000 H-1B visas annually, with an additional 20,000 visas available for foreign nationals who have earned a U.S. master’s degree or higher. In FY2021, the first year of USCIS’ H-1B lottery electronic registration, USCIS received 274,237 registrations. By FY2024, the number of registrations had increased by nearly 300% to 780,884.

Cap Fiscal Year

Total Registrations









USCIS recently announced they will be launching new organizational accounts on the myUSCIS website, which will allow multiple individuals within an organization and their legal representatives to collaborate on and prepare H-1B registrations. The new accounts will go into effect February 28, 2024. USCIS will be issuing further instructions and holding a series of “Tech Talks” in February 2024 to provide guidance on how to use the organizational accounts.

USCIS also announced the implementation of a new beneficiary-focused registration selection process that will go into effect this fiscal year. The new system will treat each beneficiary as having been entered in the lottery once, regardless of how many registrations were submitted on the foreign national’s behalf. Over the past few years, USCIS saw a steep rise in the number of beneficiaries for which multiple registrations were filed. While filing multiple registrations for a single beneficiary is not a regulatory violation, the practice was widely criticized as a misuse of the H-1B lottery registration system. USCIS will enforce the new single registration practice by requiring a passport number for each registration. The passport number will serve as a tool to limit multiple registrations for the same individual. 

USCIS will notify account holders at the end of March if their registration was selected in the lottery. Individuals who are not selected are placed on a waitlist with a chance to be selected in any subsequent lottery rounds held after the initial selection period. In recent years, USCIS has conducted additional selection rounds for those individuals waitlisted when other H-1B visas become available.

H-1B visas are generally available to foreign nationals who fill a position requiring at least a U.S. Bachelor’s Degree in a specific specialty. The H-1B category is widely used by U.S. companies to employ engineers, IT professionals, teachers, and other skilled professionals. While the lottery will not take place until March, now is the time to begin formulating a successful H-1B strategy.

Burr & Forman's Immigration team is experienced in all aspects of the H-1B sponsorship process. If your business has questions regarding H-1B sponsorship, contact Melissa Azallion Kenny (, Anna Scully (, or Jonathan Eggert ( on Burr's Immigration team.

Posted in: Immigration
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