Uscis H1b Lottery Results

On this page, you can learn all about the H-1B lottery results for this year. We’ll discuss the chances of your selection in the H-1B lottery for the 2024-25 season. The regular H-1B Visa cap, enforced by USCIS, has a congressionally mandated limit of 65,000 for the regular pool, with an additional 20,000 for the advanced degree exemption (6,800 visas are also set aside for Chile and Singapore citizens). We will provide you with the most up-to-date information on your current H-1B lottery odds, and we will update the page as soon as the registration period ends to narrow down the H-1B probability.

H-1B Lottery Chances for 2023-2024 Cap Season

With a completely random selection, H-1B visa probability can be challenging to calculate but check out our approximations below. To determine your H-1B lottery odds or chances of getting selected, we would need first to have the number of petitions submitted into the lottery pool. Since the updated data is not available yet, we will use the number of registrations submitted last year to illustrate the point.

We divide eligible registrations by the availability ratio (758,994/85,000) = 8.92. This essentially means that for every 1 H-1B visa cap slot, USCIS received 8.92 H-1B registrations. Thus, the chances of selection were 11.1% (85,000/758,994). So for every 100 registrations submitted, about 11 would be selected in the lottery. Compared to the prior year when there were 474,421 eligible H-1B registrations, 284,573 more registrations were filed this year (59.9% increase).

Last year, USCIS received a total of 780,884 H-1B registrations but of that number, only 758,994 were considered eligible. The pool of registrations that were not considered eligible were either duplicate registrations, did not complete payment or were not valid for other reasons. The number of eligible H-1B applicants with only one H-1B registration was 350,103 (filed registrations with only one employer and one coinciding job offer). The number of H-1B applicants with multiple H-1B registrations was 408,891 (had registrations with more than one employer/ multiple H-1B offers). Out of the total pool of H-1B registrations, USCIS chose 110,791 to fulfill the H-1B cap of 85,000. They selected an additional 25,791 registrations (110,791-85,000) to account for denials, non-filings, and other factors.

Note: USCIS did not provided any information regarding the breakdown of H1B registrations between the Masters quota and Regular quota, nor did they disclosed any other metrics related to employers in FY 2023-24. While such data has been released in previous years, it was not released in 2023.

USCIS has expressed concern over a sharp rise in the number of employers submitting multiple H-1B registrations for the same applicant, suspecting that some may be exploiting the system. Comparing the numbers between FY 2023 and FY 2024, the figures have risen significantly from 165,180 to 408,891 respectively. This marks an increase of 147%, with employers submitting an additional 243,711 multiple H-1B registrations.

(Note: the statistics above will be updated once 2024-25 lottery results become available)

USCIS Anti-Fraud Measures

Investigations by USCIS that have been reported publicly show the scale at 400,000 fraudulent registrations—this represents almost half of all the registrations filed. To combat the fraud, USCIS has made it clear that attempting two entries into the selection process by a beneficiary, in any manner, may lead USCIS to consider their registrations as invalid. In such cases, USCIS has the authority to deny or revoke the approval of any H-1B lottery 2025 petition, such as when both a passport and a travel document are submitted.

Furthermore, if an employer submits multiple registrations for a single beneficiary, all registrations for that beneficiary by the employer will be deemed invalid. USCIS holds the right to deny or revoke the approval of any petition filed for the beneficiary based on these invalid registrations.

Lastly, USCIS reiterates its power to deny H-1B petitioners or revoke an approved petition under certain circumstances. This includes instances where there is a change in the beneficiary’s identifying information from the registration to the petition, false attestation or invalidity of the underlying registration, an invalid registration fee, or when the H-1B cap-subject petition is not based on a valid registration.

Is the H-1B Lottery Really Random?

The H-1B lottery is currently wholly random. USCIS selects randomly from those who completed the H-1B registration accurately. Due to demand, USCIS randomly selects 85,000 registrations to be sent to processing. The demand is so high because the H-1B may seem easier due to the relatively low eligibility criteria compared to other nonimmigrant visas.

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The H-1B visa requires you to:

  • Have a job offer from a U.S. employer for a specialty position requiring a bachelor’s degree.
  • Possess at least the required bachelor’s degree.
  • Not be the sole proprietor of the sponsoring company.

The potential H-1B employer must fill out Labor Certification Application for you.

This means that your employer must make four attestations to the Department of Labor:

  1. Your employment must not have a detrimental impact on the workers currently employed.
  2. The current employees must be notified of their employer’s intent to hire them.
  3. You must be paid the prevailing wage as a minimum. This is a wage that is calculated based on your position and geographic location.
  4. The job location must not be experiencing a lock-out or strike.

Infographic showing if H-1B Lottery is Really Random

How the H-1B Lottery Works

Here’s a brief overview of how the H-1B cap lottery functions and your H-1B lottery chances for the fiscal year.

  1. The computer-generated selection process picked 65,000 from the entire pool of cap-subject petitions. Those who were not accepted and were eligible for the advanced degree exemption were transferred to the master’s cap pool for a second chance at selection. Because the regular cap is done first, followed by the master’s cap, USCIS has stated that your odds of selection as an advanced-degree holder increase by up to 16% versus the old cap ordering system.
  2. The second lottery selection picked 20,000 to meet the master’s H-1B cap.
  3. Singapore and Chile citizens have 6,800 spots specifically reserved for them.
  4. Not all petitions are subject to the cap. Cap-exempt petitions are those that:
    1. Previously counted against the cap
    2. Are intended to extend or lengthen the H-1B worker’s time in the country (H-1B visa extension)
    3. Change the employment terms for current H-1B employees (i.e., location, responsibilities, duties, etc.)
    4. Transfer an H-1B status to a different employers
    5. Allow the worker to be employed in a second position
    6. Are filed by a cap-exempt sponsor, which is either an institute of higher education, a nonprofit organization associated with an institute of higher education, or a governmental research center.

All H-1B registrations must have been submitted after 12 p.m. EST on March 6, 2024, and before 12 p.m. EST on March 22, 2024. If you submitted your registration outside this window, USCIS will issue a denial. All H-1B registrations submitted at any time during this window will have an equal chances of selection in the lottery. This means that every registration submitted within this time frame will be processed regardless of when in that time frame it was submitted.

Learn more about H-1B Processing Time.

Tips to Increase Your H-1B Lottery Chances

There are a few strategies that can help you increase your chances of getting an H-1B visa.

  • Master’s Cap: The most obvious way to help your chances is to qualify for the master’s degree (or higher) cap exemption. Being in the master’s degree cap-exemption pool increases your chances by by up to 16% percentage points. Don’t file your petition after the cap is reached because then you have zero chance of obtaining an H-1B visa for the 2024-2025 fiscal year.
  • Apply Only Once: Submitting multiple applications might seem like a good strategy, but it can lead to rejection. If a single employer submits two applications for the same employee, both will be rejected. The USCIS also scrutinizes multiple applications from affiliated companies for the same employee.
  • Ensure Your Employer Meets USCIS Requirements: A common reason for H-1B application failure is the employer not meeting USCIS standards. Verify that your employer has a good track record with successful H-1B applications, can provide the necessary documentation, and has the financial stability to pay your salary.
  • Seek Immigration Consultation: Navigating the complexities of H-1B applications can be challenging. A consultation with an experienced business immigration attorney can help ensure your application is well-prepared, compliant with legal requirements, and has the best chance of success.

h1b master

Who is Exempt from the H-1B Cap?

To qualify as a cap-exempt registration for an H-1B visa, the applicant must either have been previously counted against the H-1B cap or be offered a position with a cap-exempt employer. Cap-exempt employers are typically:

  • Higher education institutions
  • Non-profit organizations affiliated with higher education institutions
  • Non-profit or government research organizations
  • For-profit companies hiring individuals for specialty occupations to work at any of the above three types of entities

VisaNation Immigration Law Client Reviews Graphic

A non-profit organization or entity is tax-exempt and either of the following under the Internal Revenue Service (IRS): section 501(c)(3), (c)(4), or (c)(6) (see 26 U.S.C. 501(c)(3), (c)(4), or (c)(6)). Also, the non-profit should be approved as a tax-exempt organization for research or educational services by the IRS.

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Additionally, if you are already an H-1B visa holder and want to transfer employers or extend your status, then you have already been counted against the cap, and your registration will be considered cap-exempt.

Keep in mind that transferring your status from one employer to the next has a caveat. If you originally came to the U.S. through a cap-exempt employer, transferring to another cap-exempt employer is not a problem. However, if you decide to transfer to a cap-subject employer, you will need to go through the lottery process.

Check out Top H-1B Transfer Denial Reasons.

Does Premium Processing Increase My H-1B Lottery Odds?

Premium processing does not increase your H-1B probability. It is an optional service that the USCIS offers for certain petitions, the I-129 being one of them. The fee is $2,805, and USCIS will process a petition in 15 calendar days rather than in the standard amount of time, which can take upwards of six months.

What Happens if You’re Selected in the H-1B Lottery?

If you’re selected in the H-1B lottery, USCIS issues Form I-797C, Notice of Action, indicating selection and providing details like the employer’s name, identification number, and confirmation number. This form confirms the registration’s selection for the congressionally mandated cap and specifies the dates within which the H-1B petition must be filed exclusively for the identified beneficiary. It’s important to note that due to high filing volumes, there might be delays in receiving Form I-797 after filing the petition. Petitioners should avoid submitting a second petition even if they haven’t received Form I-797 but have delivery confirmation, as this could lead to both petitions being denied or revoked. If more than 30 days pass without receiving Form I-797 after confirmed delivery, petitioners should contact the USCIS Contact Center for assistance.

Find out everything about H-1B Grace Period.

I-797 Example Form 2023

If you are selected in the H-1B lottery, your sponsor needs to file the I-129 petition within 90 days of receiving the selection notification. One of the documents needing to be filed and approved is the H-1B Labor Condition Application with the Department of Labor. Also included in the complete H-1B package are details about the beneficiary. An immigration lawyer is the best person to handle the submission packet to ensure all necessary details are included. Once USCIS receives the complete application packet, you’ll receive a receipt notice. Premium processing is available for an additional $2,805, and it ensures USCIS will process it in 15 calendar days. After USCIS sends out the receipt notices, they’ll adjudicate the petitions, and you may receive more updated statuses plus any requests for evidence, if applicable. Sometimes USCIS needs more information on the beneficiary’s qualifications and the relationship between the employer and employee, among other documents.

The ideal scenario you will see is two case statuses, the first being “Case was Received” and then “Case was Approved.” Just remember that if you don’t select premium processing, then there’s really no telling how long processing your case will take, and it can sometimes take upwards of six months.

H-1B Visa Lottery 2024-25 Important Dates

Petitioners can expect to find out if they were selected in the lottery on March 31, 2024. USCIS intends to conduct the H-1B cap lottery between March 22 and March 31, 2024. Those petitions that have been selected are to be sent to the adjudicating service center. Afterward, a USCIS case number will be issued to monitor the ongoing status.

Another way to determine whether your H-1B petition has been selected in the lottery is to look at your bank statement to see if USCIS cashed the H-1B filing fee check. If it is cashed, be sure to make a note indicating the date.

March 6th, 2024 is when the H-1B registration officially opens.

How to Check H-1B Lottery Results

There are a few ways to find out if you were selected in the H-1B. Here’s how to check your lottery status:

  1. Check if USCIS Cashed the Application Fee Check: If USCIS has cashed your H-1B application fee check, it’s a sign your petition may have been selected.
  2. Look for a 13-Digit Receipt Number: Your employer will receive a 13-digit receipt number by mail if your petition is selected. Check the status of this number on the USCIS Case Status Tool Online. You may watch our short video below to learn how to use the USCIS tool.
  3. Receipt of Stamped I-797 Form: All lottery winners receive a stamped I-797 Form from Immigration and Naturalization Services, indicating selection in the lottery.
  4. For Nonimmigrant Students in the Advanced Degree Pool: Visit the Student and Exchange Visitor Information (SEVIS) website to check your status, as this site is regularly updated with lottery winners.
  5. 24-Month OPT Extension for STEM Students: If you are an F1 student with a STEM degree and your employer is enrolled in E-Verify, you can apply for a 24-month extension of post-completion OPT employment authorization if you received an initial OPT grant based on your STEM degree. Check your status by visiting the Student and Exchange Visitor Information (SEVIS) website.
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After March 22, 2024, all registrations will say “Submitted.” Some will later change to “Selected,” “Denied,” or “Not Selected.” If USCIS needs to increase the registrations for either cap during the remainder of the fiscal year, it will select more registrations from the “Submitted” pool. After October 1, 2024, the remaining “Submitted” registrations will change to “Not Selected”.

What if the H-1B Lottery Results Reveal I Wasn’t Selected?

If your petition is not selected in the lottery, USCIS will return your petition and filing fee unless determined to be a duplicate filing, in which case USCIS will return it without the fee.

If your petition was marked as “wait-listed,” it may replace an initially selected petition later found to be ineligible or denied. The USCIS has confirmed that it selects more petitions than are given in the cap in anticipation of some being withdrawn or rejected.

Find out all about Top H-1B Visa Myths.

H-1B Second Lottery Chances in 2024

The chances of a second H-1B lottery in 2024 are around 80%. In the past five years, USCIS held the second lotteries four times. Given the high number of registrations in recent years and issues related to the potential misuse of the H-1B registration system, USCIS has been conducting second lotteries quite regularly. Since the number of H-1B visas is significantly limited, having such a high chance of a second lottery surely encourages more applicants to apply and try their chances.

H-1B Third Lottery Chances in 2024

The chances of a third lottery for H-1B visas are only 20% since, in the past five years, only one third lottery has been conducted. Although this is a very popular topic amongst many H-1B applicants, you should not rely on being selected in the third round. USCIS will only conduct a third H-1B lottery if the number of approved petitions after the first two lotteries falls short of the annual cap, primarily due to withdrawals, rejections, or unfiled petitions from the previous lotteries. This ensures all available H-1B visas are utilized, adhering to the yearly quota.

Current Filing Fees: H-1B 2024-2025

You can see the most up-to-date filing fees here.VisaNation Law Group has some of the most competitive filing fees, including responding to RFEs. Please see this page for a more detailed outline of our H-1B attorney fees.

Looking Back at Past H-1B Seasons

In recent years, the number of initial registrations has been trending higher and the selection rate for initial registrations has been trending lower. Keep in mind that USCIS selects higher than 85,000 registrations to account for 1. those selected candidates who end up not filing H-1B petitions and 2. anticipated denials of H-1B petitions.

For example, in the fiscal year 2024 H-1B lottery season, USCIS received a significantly higher number of petitions compared to the previous year. Specifically, 758,994 H-1B cap-eligible registrations were submitted. From these submissions, USCIS selected a total of 188,400 registrations over multiple rounds to meet the H-1B quota, equating to an approximate selection rate of 24.8%.

For the FY 2023 H-1B lottery season, USCIS received a total of 474, 421 eligible registrations. Given that a total of 127,600 registrations were selected, the approximate chance of selection in the FY 2023 lottery was about 26.8%.

In contrast, the FY 2022 H-1B lottery season saw a total of 301,447 eligible registrations. USCIS initially selected 87,500 registrations in the first round. However, after two subsequent lotteries, the total number of selected registrations for FY 2022 reached 131,970, bringing the overall selection rate to about 43.7% for that fiscal year​.

H-1B for Various Professionals

Contrary to popular belief, H-1B can be a versatile immigration option for some professionals for the following:

  • H-1B Visa for Entrepreneurs
  • H-1B for Nurses
  • H-1B for Doctors
  • H-1B for Teachers