Home » US Immigration - Visas » H1B Visa » H1B Visa Cap Reach Dates History FY 2000 to 2022 – Graph – USCIS Data

H1B Visa Cap Reach Dates History FY 2000 to 2022 – Graph – USCIS Data

H1B Visa is the most sought temporary work visa in the US by international professionals and students. There has been an extreme amount of demand in recent years for H1B visa slots. It is important for anyone to understand the past, to predict the future demand and how one can plan for the future.

The H1B quota cap was sufficient in the past and demand was low and in some years it wasn’t even reached at all (including the years when the cap was increased to 195,000. We have been tracking H1B visa trends for over a decade now and continue to research every day on the same.

In this article, we present H1B cap reach data, including graphs and trends. The data in the article is up to date as of H1B FY 2022 season. We will look at the history of H1B Cap reach dates, How many applications were filed, and all other data, including H1B Data Availability and How we got the data.

H1B Visa Cap Reach Dates History – FY 2004 to 2022

H1B Visa Cap Reach Dates from Fiscal Year(FY) 2004 to FY 2022
H1B Visa Cap Reach Dates from Fiscal Year(FY) 2004 to FY 2022

Total H1B Visa Cap Applications Filed by Year – FY 2004 to 2022

Below are the descriptions of the fields for the table that is below with H1B past data.

  • H1B Fiscal Year(FY) : It corresponds to USCIS Fiscal Year. It starts from October 1st and ends on September 30th. Example : H1B Fiscal Year 2022 starts from October 1st, 2021, and ends on Sep 30th, 2022.
  • Cap Reached Date : The exact date when H1B Visa Cap reached. Read What is H1B Cap, Regular vs Masters Quota Cap ?
  • Cap Reached: If the cap was reached means Yes, if not No.
  • H1B Cap Open Days : How many days the H1B cap was open
  • H1B Applications Received by USCIS : Total number of H1B Applications received by USCIS in that fiscal year. It is total count of registrations from FY 2021 as USCIS introduced H1B Registration process
  • H1B Lottery : It is a situation, when there were more H1B filings or registrations submitted to USCIS than the annual limit of 85,000 per year. Read more at – What is H1B Lottery ? Selection Order, Process ?
H1B Fiscal Year Cap Reached DateCap Reached (YES or NO)H1B Cap Open Days H1B Applications Received by USCIS
2004Oct 1, 2003YES  
2005Oct 1, 2004YES  
2006Aug 10, 2005YES  
2007May 26, 2006YES 55 Days No H1B Lottery 
2008April 3, 2007YES 2 Days 123,480 ( H1B Lottery)
2009April 7, 2008YES 5 Days  163,000 ( H1B Lottery)
2010Dec  21, 2009YES 264 Days No H1B Lottery
2011Jan   26, 2011YES 300 Days No H1B Lottery
2012Nov 22, 2011YES 235 DaysNo H1B Lottery
2013June 11, 2012YES 71 DaysNo H1B Lottery
2014April 5, 2013YES 5 Days124,000 (H1B Lottery)
2015April 7, 2014YES 5 Days172,500 (H1B Lottery)
2016April 7, 2015YES 5 Days233,000 (H1B Lottery)
2017April 7, 2016YES 5 Days236,000 (H1B Lottery)
2018April 7, 2017YES 5 Days199,000 (H1B Lottery)
2019April 6, 2018YES 5 Days190,098 (H1B Lottery)
2020April 5, 2019YES 5 Days201,011 (H1B Lottery)
2021Mar 20, 2020YES20 Days275,000 ( H1B Lottery)
2022Mar 25, 2021YES15 Days308,613 (H1B Lottery)
H1B Cap reach dates, Lottery info by year from 2004 until 2022

Total H1B Applications Filings Trend Chart – FY 2004 to 2022

Total H1B Visa Registrations or Applications Filings History Fiscal Year 2004 to 2022
Total H1B Visa Registrations or Applications Filings History Fiscal Year 2004 to 2022

Extra Percentage of H1B Applications/ Registrations Picked

USCIS also published data in  Nov 2018, as part of a proposed rule on the details of how many H1B petitions they picked extra on top of total cap of 85,000 and also the split of Masters quota filings vs regular quota filings, and also the premium processing data split as well. We have put together all of that info in an article with graphs at :  H1B Lottery Data Split, Extra Petitions, Premium Stats 

H1B Cap Count FY 2013-2017 – % of Extra Selected Over 85K Cap

YearTotal H1Bs Filed with USCISOverall H1Bs Selected in LotteryAdditional H1B Petitions Picked in LotteryPercentage of Petitions Over Standard Cap of 85,000
Details of Extra Percentage of H1B Petitions selected in Lottery

H1B Historical data – 1999 to 2004

H1B Fiscal Year H1Bs Filed H1Bs ApprovedH1B Cap AvailableCap Reached DateComments / Reasons
1999138,000+138,000+115,000Over CapKPMG audit reported that INS approved more visas than the cap in News release.
2000164,814136,787115,00021-MarchUSICS believes they have enough petitions to fulfil the cap
2001201,543201,079195,000NOT reachedUSICS considers visas accepted after November 5, 2001 will be considered for 2002 H1B Cap
2002109,576103,584195,000NOT reachedUSCIS says in news release that H1B petitions filing declined by 41%
2003108,526105,314195,000NOT reached 
H1B cap history from 1999 to 2004 information

How was H1B Historical Data Collected from USCIS

There is no historical data available on the USCIS website for the years 1990 – 1999. In 1999, INS approved more visas than they were supposed to. The congress jumped in and took action. It was reported by KPMG Audit. So, the policy changed after 1999 and USCIS accepts H1B petitions and uses their discretion to decide when to stop. As per data is concerned, which is after 1999, it is available on USCIS is its Archive News releases and it is kind of unclear.

Fundamentally, in the past until FY 2021, USCIS stops accepting applications when they think they have enough  H1B visa petitions,  including the backlogs they have to process and they will be able to meet the cap numbers. Their decision is just an approximate decision based on the amount of H1B approvals vs Denials and the backlogs they have with them.  Data from 2004 is very good with proper reports, but before that we just have to go with some approximations based on news releases info.

Good Data is available from 2004. There were no excess visas left out. The cap was reached every year.  The data USCIS presented in the reports include all the visas filed.  We only know if H1B visa cap was reached or not and when was the cap reached ? If you are looking for maximum amount of H1B cap and how the cap numbers changed, you can check out maximum H1B cap numbers from 1990 to today.  The article only talks about general H1B quota. It does not include the Advanced degree H1B visa cap reach dates.  There is no special split that is given by USCIS on this, so we have to put it in generic way…Below is the graphical illustration and  tabular data.

All the information is available for public on USCIS website. Should you need further clarification, please visit the USCIS Website . Information presented here is based on the data published on USCIS website.


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  1. The H1B work visa is one of the most popular U.S nonimmigrant visas. It allows people from all over the world to go to the U.S and work for a U.S employer for up to 6 years. It is otherwise known as the Person in Specialty Occupation Visa. This makes it highly competitive because only people with advanced skills and knowledge get approval. They go on to work in the U.S and get sponsorship from companies.

  2. Great Article. ideas – I am thankful for the facts , Does someone know if my company can get ahold of a blank USCIS G-325A form to type on ?

  3. Hi,

    I’ve come to the US on F-2 dependent visa and whenever I apply for a job online, they ask if I have work permission and since I don’t have one, I’m being automatically rejected, (online). So dice, monster etc. is not helping me. How do I find work here in the US?


  4. Hi Saurav,

    Your sugestion and the article that you posted for me is very helpful,can you pls also let me know can I look for employers/sponsors who will recruit me. SAP , I guess is a good domain and will invite offers from employers.


    • Malobika Ray,
      I am not aware about the SAP prospects in US. What you can do is go to US job sites like dice, monster, career builder etc and see if there are any openings that suit your profile. You can also go through the detailed job requirements to know if you satisfy all of them or if there are any gaps. If there are gaps, you can start working towards them. Meanwhile, you can approach the employers who have openings in this domain to sponsor your H-1.

  5. Hi,

    I have query regarding salary in US.

    – What would be the good salary in US ? As my employer offer me ~70k. In one project they offer me 55 $ per/hr and my employer take 30%. So is it good to have 50-55$pr/ hr

    – I may live in CA , TX or NJ. Please let me know the total cost of living in this states. Is it 1500$ MAX or may be very from person to person ?

    – How much I will get onhand salary I get on 70k as per Tax calculation ? I have seen in some blog that there is not 30% tax for married people but I am not sure how it would be calculated ?

    Please suggest me.


    • 1. It depends upon number of years of experience, technology you are in etc. So it can either be an ok salary or a bad one.
      2. Yes, it can vary from person to person, and also on your family size, accommodation type etc.
      3. You should use online tax calculator to calculate your in hand. Different states have different state tax. There can be other deductions like medical insurance, social security, medicare, 401k etc.

      • My Exp is 8 years in Java/J2EE. They offer me 70k $. So it good in NJ?(I am married and will live with wife. )

        – What is the normal tax of state ? as I am not able to find out from sites, As I have gone through few site and found below things.


        Gross Income $70,000.00
        Taxable Income $56,800.00
        Federal Tax $10,325.00
        Social Security $5,355.00
        State Tax $0.00
        Take Home $54,320.00 —. $4,526.67 per month.

        Is it correct calculation ? As I gone through few sites but some site are not calculate Social Security Tax. Just want to know for my calculation purpose.


        • Looking at your experience, I will say it’s on the lower end. Check out job openings on dice, monster and see what other companies are offering for similar positions. As you are in consulting, that could be another reason why it’s lower.

          I don’t have idea about NJ state taxes, but your calculations look in the right range. You will have to pay social security on H-1. I am assuming you will be filing as married+jointly, and will be claiming your wife as dependent as she is not working. You will also have to pay medicare, which is around 1% of taxable income. If you will be making any 401k or wageworks deductions, you can remove them as well from the taxable income.

          To get your monthly expense in NJ, add the following:
          – Rent: find reasonable apartments in craigslist as that would give you a ballpark number about house rent
          – Utilities: includes gas, cable, telephone (varies from person to person)
          – Groceries: For a family of two, it could be b/w $150 and $250 p.m.
          – Gas: depends upon how many you will be driving every month
          – Insurance/Loan Payment
          – Misc: this includes movie, entertainment, dining out etc (varies from person to person)
          – etc

          Once you have broken it down into categories, it could give you an idea about your savings.

  6. Hi All,

    I have query regarding H1B transfer.

    My H1 petition has been filed by employer A in 2008 and I have EAC approval number. But because of recession, I have’t go for visa stamping. Now Market is good and I want to transfer my H1 through employer B, so Is it possible ? Does they can do by only EAC number ? or Can I go for new petition through any other consultant ?

    If I try for H1 transfer than how far chances are there to get 2-3 yr visa in current situation ?

    Looking forward your reply.


    • A different employer B can file an H-1 petition for you and submit your existing EAC number to show that you have already been counted in the quota before (this is H-1 transfer). Once approved, you can go for H-1 stamping and then travel to US to work on that H-1 and new employer. Note that you can go for stamping through existing employer also, but as his petition may be expiring soon, your visa stamp may also expire soon. Also, I am not sure how much your current H-1 employer is interested in sending documents for your H-1 stamping.

      The duration of the petition can be anything from 1 to 3 years depending upon what your employer submits in LCA, and what USCIS considers.

      • Thanks Saurabh.

        – My current employer is not going to help me so far.

        – My employer B is going to put petition file soon once I get offer from US client. So is it call H1 transfer or what? I hear that for H1 transfer I need SSN and last 3 months Pay Stub. In my case i don’t have such things. Is there any issue in approval and H1 stamping ?

        • If B files a petition for you, and submits the old petition as proof that you have already been counted in the quota, then that would be H-1 transfer. If B files a petition for you, w/ no reference to old petition then it’s not a H-1 transfer. In the former, you can start working prior to 1st Oct, while in the latter you cannot start working until 1st Oct 2011.

          Payslips etc are required only if a person has spent time in US on H-1. If the person has never been to US on H-1, then payslips are not required. To be more clearer, payslips and W2s are required as proof that one maintained legal status while in US. If one hasn’t been to US, then question of maintaining legal status is really not applicable.

          There shouldn’t be any issue during H-1 approval and stamping, as long as your employer and job is genuine.

          • Saurabh,

            What if B petition is denied during h1 transfer ? Is A approved petition is still valid and can work using A approved h1 before OCT?

            Also I have a friend who CASE was revoked after visa is stamped since he resigned from TCS and just wanted whether he will come under cap or non cap.

  7. Hello,
    I want to apply for H1B i have an experience of 5+ years in IT Sales and technical. I completed my PGDBM from ESC-Rennes France.

    Kindly tell me who are the employers that I must send my CV to for the process of application.

    Thanks and regards

    • You need to search for them on job sites like dice, monster etc. However, carefully vet every employer before finalizing one, because not everyone will have your interest in mind.

  8. You are Welcome Joe ! Thank you for the latest link. Very Good information ! I will read it completely and will try to share some good thoughts to our readers.

  9. Thanks for the data. Didn’t know that this year the quota actually has been open for longer than at any time since they got the cap back to 65K in 2004.

    And just this morning I got pointed to a new memo from CIS which essentially kills the body shop concept (http://www.uscis.gov/USCIS/Laws/Memoranda/2010/H1B%20Employer-Employee%20Memo010810.pdf), in particular pages 6-7, so I expect the 2011 quota to stay open for quite a while as well, basically a repeat of the 2010 quota.


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