USCIS H1B Historical Data and Stats

H1B Historical Data – Lottery vs 85K Quota, Masters vs Regular Split

In Immigration| Visas by KumarUpdated : 6 Comments

As you know, DHS proposed a pre-registration rule for H1B lottery recently. As part of the propose rule documentation, USCIS revealed many of their internal H1B statistics data regarding petitions filed, overall lottery numbers, premium petitions, US masters vs Regular quota filings, etc. This H1B data used to be only provided on request and not widely published to everyone. Now, it is officially published. Below are some of the H1B historical data stats from the document and our analysis on the same.

H1B Lottery – Actual Petitions Selected vs Standard Cap of 85K.

As per our Historical H1B Cap Reach Dates, Lottery Data, we have seen lottery since year 2013 and has never slowed down. As you all know, the overall H1B visa cap is 85,000( 65,000 is regular quota and 20,000 is US Masters quota). USCIS has said in the past that they pick more petitions than 85,000 in the H1B Visa Lottery accounting for the denials, revocations, and other reasons, but they never revealed the actual numbers publicly to everyone.  Below is the historical data trend from Years 2013 to 2017 on how many additional petitions they have picked.  On an average is about 12,000 petitions and about 14.3% of more petitions selected. We can estimate that about 14.3% or around 12,000 of petitions are either denied or revoked annually. We have also put the same in graph for better visualization, see below.

H1B Cap-Subject Petitions Years 2013-2017 – Percentage of Extra H1B Petitions Selected Overs 85K Cap
Year Total H1Bs Filed with USCIS Overall H1Bs Selected in Lottery Additional H1B Petitions Picked in Lottery Percentage of Petitions Over Standard Cap of 85,000
2013 124,130 98,318 13,318 15.67%
2014 172,581 98,034 13,034 15.33%
2015 232,973 97,714 12,714 14.96%
2016 236,444 95,622 10,622 12.50%
2017 198,460 96,301 11,301 13.30%

Historical Data  – Extra H1B Petitions Picked during H1B Lottery Process

Percentage of Extra H1B Petitions Selected Overs 85K Cap

H1B Visa Regular and US Masters Quota Petitions Split – Historical Trend

USCIS never disclosed the exact split of US Masters’ degree quota filed H1B petitions and Regular Quota petitions. If you look at the trend from 2013 to 2017, the number of US Masters quota petitions keep increasing, while the regular quota petitions filing continue to reduce. Within a span of 5 years, the US masters quota has almost doubled, which indicates more Masters students in US are applying for H1B, than internationals living abroad planning to move to US for work.  With this trend, we can anticipate that more US Masters students will continue to apply in upcoming years.

 

H1B Regular and Masters Cap Petitions Filed Split percentage, count
Year Total H1Bs Filed with USCIS Regular Cap Petitions Masters Cap Petitions Regular Cap % Masters Cap %
2013 124,130 93,489 30,641 75.32% 24.68%
2014 172,581 132,063 40,518 76.52% 23.48%
2015 232,973 182,249 50,724 78.23% 21.77%
2016 236,444 166,206 70,238 70.29% 29.71%
2017 198,460 111,080 87,380 55.97% 44.03%
2018 190,098 94,213 95,885 49.56% 50.44%

Below is the data from USCIS website from 2019 captured, when the page existed. Now it is replaced. H1B Cap Count Split for FY 2020

Historical Data  – H1B Regular vs Masters Quota filed Petitions Split Percentage

H1B Petitions Regular vs Masters Split - Historical Trend

H1B Premium Processing Filings by Year – Historical Trend.

If you have filed for H1B petition in regular processing, you would have been waiting for a very long time and every year it was taking even longer… But, it was not clear, why the wait kept worsening every year. It was assumed that USCIS load was high due to premium processing and they had a deadline of 15 calendar days. Now that we have data, we know exactly the ration of numbers and why overall regular H1B Processing times  took more time. As you can see below, since 2013, every year the percentage of Premium processing petitions kept on increasing from 25.15% to 32% in 2016. That’s when USCIS realized that they need to do something and in 2017 USCIS suspended premium processing to manage the load.

H1B Cap-Subject Petitions FY 2013-2016 – Premium Processing Filed
Year Total H1Bs Filed with USCIS Overall H1Bs Selected in Lottery Premium Processing Filed Percentage of Premium Processing Filed
2013 124,130 98,318 24,731 25.15%
2014 172,581 98,034 25,860 26.38%
2015 232,973 97,714 26,502 27.12%
2016 236,444 95,622 30,622 32.02%

Historical Data  – H1B Premium Processing Petitions filing Trend

Percentage of H1B Premium Processing Filings History

Overall, all of these numbers give us an idea of how the H1B program is used by various types of applicants and how USCIS handles them and estimate denials and future H1B filing trends.

What do you think of the above H1B Visa Historical stats? Any further insights ?

References : Official H1B Registration Rule in Federal Register

   

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Comments ( 6 )

  1. Jaganth

    Hi Kumar,

    Can you pls answer to below question. I just heard USCIS is temporarily withdrawn 240 days rule for H1 B extension and we Can work after 240 days as well until we get decision. I don’t see any news on Website. Do you have any idea on same. Can you play share your Thoughts

  2. L1B-H1B

    I understand in regular category means (Non-Advanced degree from US). In H1B lottery system all the IT people and other technology people (like: construction, design, procurement etc.) in Regular category. Is there any quota for IT vs other technology?

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