DHS Announces Plan to Issue More H-2B Visas

Last Updated on November 15, 2023

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has announced plans to issue an additional 64,716 H-2B visas this fiscal year.  


Typically, DHS issues 66,000 H-2B visas under the regular H-2B cap. Of that amount, 33,000 visas are available in the first half of each fiscal year, which begins on October 1, and the remaining 33,000 visas are available starting on April 1. However, this year DHS received enough petitions by October 13 to reach its congressionally mandated H-2B cap for part one of the fiscal year. As a result, it now plans to issue an additional 64,716 H-2B visas this fiscal year, which is the maximum number of supplemental visas permitted.  

Of the 64,716 additional H-2B visas, DHS is reserving 20,000 for workers from Colombia, Costa Rica, Ecuador, El Salvador, Guatemala, Haiti, and Honduras. DHS will make the remaining 44,716 visas available to returning H-2B workers who received an H-2B visa or were granted H-2B status in the past three fiscal years.  

By issuing the additional visas, DHS hopes to meet the demand for nonagricultural seasonal workers and expand lawful pathways for work in the U.S.  

Looking Ahead  

Along with issuing more visas, DHS has announced that it will publish a temporary final rule soon with more information on H-2B program safeguards, along with filing and eligibility requirements.  

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Envoy is pleased to provide you with this information, which was prepared in collaboration with Anne Walsh, who is a Partner at Corporate Immigration Partners, P.C., a U.S. law firm who provides services through the Envoy Platform (the “U.S. Law Firm”).     

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