U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has said it has reached the congressionally-mandated cap on H-2B visas for the first half of fiscal year (FY) 2024. The U.S. government’s FY 2024 runs from Oct. 1, 2023 – Sept. 30, 2024.
The H-2B visa program enables temporary seasonal (unskilled, nonagricultural) workers to come to the United States to work in industries needing extra help during certain seasons.
Currently, Congress has set the H-2B cap at 66,000 per fiscal year: 33,000 for workers who begin employment in the first half of the fiscal year (Oct. 1 – March 31); and 33,000, plus any unused numbers from the first half of the fiscal year, for workers who begin employment in the second half of the fiscal year (April 1 – Sept. 30).
Oct. 11, 2023, was the final receipt date for new cap-subject H-2B worker petitions requesting an employment start date before April 1, 2024.
USCIS said it continues to accept H-2B petitions that are exempt from the congressionally-mandated cap, including petitions for:
Current H-2B workers in the United States who extend their stay, change employers or change the terms and conditions of their employment; and
Workers performing labor or services in the Commonwealth of Northern Mariana Islands and/or Guam from Nov. 28, 2009, until Dec. 31, 2029.
The American Rental Association (ARA) is a member of the H-2B Visa Coalition. As a member of its steering committee, ARA has immediate access to developments in this area as well as helps to craft policy to promote a more robust program for ARA members using H-2B visas.