On September 28, 2012, USCIS provided an update of the amount of cap-subject H-2B visas received and approved by the federal agency for the second half of Fiscal Year 2012. According to USCIS, a total of 28,159 beneficiaries have been approved for the second half of Fiscal Year 2012, with an additional 1,096 petitions pending. USCIS is targeting a total of 51,000 cap-subject H-2B petitions for the second half of Fiscal Year 2012.
Congressionally-based legislation limits the amount of H-2B visas provided per fiscal year to a total of 66,000, with 33,000 allocated for employment for the first half of the fiscal year and 33,000 allocated for employment for the second half of the fiscal year. Unused numbers from the first half of the fiscal year are made available for use by employers seeking H-2B workers during the second half of the year. These numbers do not, however, carry over from one fiscal year to another. A total of 36,609 beneficiaries were approved for the first half of Fiscal Year 2012. USCIS was targeting 45,000 beneficiaries for that time period.