H1B visa - L1 Grace Period USCIS 60 Days Details

H1B Grace Period 60 Days USCIS Rule – Job Loss, You Quit, H4 EAD, FAQs

In H1B Visa by KumarUpdated : 81 Comments

Some of the unfortunate H1B holders go through situations, where their company does a layoff as part of cost cutting, merger or acquisition…in the past, there was no concept of grace period and H1B holders were out of status upon job termination or layoff…but, in Jan 2017, USCIS made effective a set of rules that helps certain employment based non-immigrants such as H1B holders. Let’s look at the official rule details and FAQs on the same.

What is Official H1B Grace Period USCIS Rule ?

H1B Visa Grace Period 60 Days USCIS Official Rule Reference

As per regulation that came into effect in Jan 2017, H1B Visa holders can get a grace period of up to 60 days to find another job or change visa status, if their employment on H1B visa is terminated due to layoff or other unforeseen reasons, before the end of their H1B petition validity.  The grace period is applicable for non-immigrant workers on H1B, H1BI, L1, O1 E3 and TN Status.  You can see the actual regulation text in the adjacent screenshot.   The reason for giving the grace period is for job portability for the employees to be able to find relevant work and continue their employment as their employment period ended before the completion of the given duration in their actual approval notice.

How does 60 Days Grace Period work with earlier I-94 Expiration Date ?

As we look at more details of the regulation at 8 CFR 214.1(l)(2), it clarifies the situation with I-94 expiration date or earlier end date on the H1B petition approval notice.  It says “H1B Holder gets 60 Days of grace period or until the end of authorized validity period of their status(basically I-94 end date), whichever is shorter”. So, if your I-94 or petition end date is before 60 days from your job loss or lay off, then your grace period is shortened until the expiration of your I-94 date. See below highlighted text in green and purple.

H1B Visa 60 Days Grace Period with I94 Expiration Rule

What does the H1B visa grace period of 60 days mean for employees with Job loss ?

The grace period of maximum 60 days for H1B, L1 and other visa holders means that they will be considered in “Valid Status” (read US Status vs Visa ) and not considered ‘out of status’  for the entire 60 days duration, when they apply for H1B Transfer.  In general, you need to be in ‘valid status’ in US to file any of the petitions for extension or change of status for USCIS to approve such petitions.  These 2 months or 60 days grace period gives the H1B or L1 holder to find another employer to file another H1B or do change of status to another visa as needed.

Is the 60 days grace automatic ? USCIS Discretion ?

As per regulation, the 60 days grace period for H1B or L1 holders is not automatic, but discretionary. DHS/ USCIS has full right to eliminate or shorten the grace period based on a case by case basis. See red highlighted text above in screenshot.

Why would USCIS to reduce 60 grace period ?

Some of the common reasons that USCIS uses to reduce or end grace period is for situations involving unauthorized employment, fraud or criminal charges tied to the H1B holder. As long as you do not engage in any of these kind of activities, you should get fully 60 days grace period.

How to request for 60 days grace period for H1B, L1, E3 visa holders ?

There is no special form required for requesting grace period. It is pretty much standard process, when you apply for transfer…additionally, you would need to submit proof of your layoff or resignation. Basically, you would submit a cover letter explaining your situation of Job loss , with supporting documentation, when you file for H1B Transfer or Change of Status application with USCIS. This way, they would consider your status as valid, even if you do not have pay stubs.

How many times can you use the 60 days grace period ?

H1B, L1, E3 and other visa holders can only use the 60 days grace period ONCE for H1B petition validity period. What it means is that, let’s say you are working for Employer A, you get one 60 days grace period for the H1B validity with Employer A. Now the catch is, if you quit or got laid off from Employer A and plan to re-join Employer A, lets say after 30 days during your grace period, then you do not get another 60 days grace period with Employer A as the same H1B petition will be used.  Unlike, if you transfer to Employer B, then as you have a new H1B petition with new validity period, you get another 60 days grace period. You may watch below short video as well.

Do I get grace period, if I quit or resign the job, instead of Layoff ?

The regulation does not differentiate between layoff, job loss, termination, resignation or quitting the job. So, technically 60 days grace period should be available to all H1B, L1 and other visa holders, who either submit resignation or quit, instead of layoff.  Having said that, USCIS has their discretion to decide or reduce the grace period, based on your case and circumstance as it cannot be taken for granted automatically.

Can we just resign and automatically get grace period ?

Though the regulation does not differentiate between job loss vs. resignation or quitting the job, it has to be noted that the 60 days grace period is USCIS/DHS Discretion and not automatic. The original intent of the rule was to help highly skilled non-immigrants in dire situations. If USCIS is not convinced and they may not issue you 60 days grace period or make it shorter, thereby making your stay “out of status”. So, it is NOT recommended to take the H1B grace period rule for granted and resign job and apply for transfer later…discuss with your attorney before you make any such decisions.

What if I exceed 60 days grace period with H1B Transfer ?

Well, technically you are considered to be in valid status until you hit the 60 days grace period mark or expiration of I-94. Once you go past 60 days, your status is no longer valid and you are ‘Out of Status’. Let’s say you apply for H1B transfer and get the USCIS receipt on day 60, you can still start to work from day 60 and it will be fine, but if you do not have the receipt on 60th day, you are entering a tricky zone and you should talk to your attorney and decide. Ideally, the safest thing to do is leave and re-enter US. It is always recommended to go for premium processing, if available, in situations like these.

Can H4 EAD dependents work in 60 days H1B Grace Period ?

In general, you need to be in valid status to continue working. During 60 days grace period, H1B holder is technically in status, hence H4 Visa holder is also in status. So, logically, H4 holder with valid EAD maybe able to work during the grace period. The tricky part is, USCIS regulation clearly tells that H1B holder cannot work during grace period, but does not give any guidance on H4 holder working on EAD. So, it is a grey area and you need to discuss with attorney.  Also, as USCIS mentioned, the 60 days grace period is discretionary and not automatic, you need to be very careful. If let’s say USCIS does not give you 60 days grace period or shortens it, then H1B holder would not have been in status, so H4 visa holder would also not have been in status…so, you would have done unauthorized employment on H4 EAD as there was no grace period for you as well…so, it can be tricky, so, the suggestion is to either stop working on the day your H1B spouse loses job, to avoid issues as it is subjective or discuss your case with your immigration attorney and act accordingly. Better safe than sorry !

Common FAQs for H1B Grace Period

When does the 60 days grace period start, when you lose job ?

It starts on the day the lay off is done or job is terminated…or you resign. It is not tied to your payment cycle like 1st or 15th of the month. As soon as you get notice that your job is terminated, your grace period starts from that day. You need to make sure all of these documentary evidence is submitted during H1B Transfer or Change of Status.

Can I carry forward the unused 60 days Grace Period, use in future  ?

No, you cannot carry forward unused grace period from 60 days  and use it another time. As mentioned above, you can use it only once per petition validity period and cannot use it again in chunks as needed.

Can you do part time work during 60 days Grace Period  ?

No, you cannot work part time or engage in any sort of unauthorized work during the 60 days grace period.

When Can I Start working during Grace Period with H1B Transfer ?

You can start working for the New Employer, as soon as you have received the USCIS Receipt Number. E.g. If you lose your job and you filed for H1B transfer with new employer and got receipt after 20 days during the grace period, you can start working right away after you have receipt number from USCIS. You do not have to wait for completion of 60 days grace period.

Do I get 60 days grace period , if my H1B or L1 are denied ?

No, you do not get any 60 days grace period, if your H1B or L1 petitions are denied by USCIS. The grace period is applicable only for cases, where the employment ends earlier than the H1B or L1 petition validity period.

Can I travel outside of US during 60 Days grace period and re-enter ?

You may travel outside of USA in grace period, but you cannot re-enter as you will need valid Visa to re-enter. Unless you have a valid visa for a different status, you cannot re-enter. The grace period can be used to settle up your affairs in US and move out  or to find another employer and get status extended using transfer.

How does H1B /L1  grace period impact my Visa Stamp ? Re-use the same ?

Your visa stamp has no impact with the H1B/L1  grace period or your employment termination You can use your H1B or L1 visa stamp to re-enter US by showing the new H1B /L1 Approved petition approval notice ( I797 approval notice) from USCIS. No need to go for stamping again.

What are your thoughts on the H1B, L1 Grace Period of 60 Days ? Your experiences

ReferencesUSCIS Non-Immigrant Visa Changes Regulation – 2017  , USCIS H1B 60 Day End Date Regulation 2017


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Comments ( 81 )

  1. Nvidia


    I am currently in India for H1B stamping. My passport now holds a valid h1b visa that expires in 2022. I got to know a few days ago that I am laid off by my employer. Can I travel to the US on this visa? Please help!

    1. administrator

      No, you cannot. You cannot travel without a job, you will be having issues at Port of entry, if they do secondary screening or check with your employer…

  2. Jash Shah

    Hi Kumar.
    I am currently on F1 visa. My H1b was filed under Consular Processing in 2019 and was selected in lottery and also approved. However, it hasn’t been activa ast week, I was laid off. While currently on F1, will a new employer be able to file for my H1b transfer if I am within the 60 day grace period?

    Thank you,

    1. administrator

      It is slightly grey area. It maybe possible, do speak to an attorney. If you have an employer willing to file H1B, you should definitely give it a shot and apply for it.

      1. Jash Nilesh Shah

        Thank you Kumar. Just a follow-up Can I apply for a transfer and also register for the lottery during the same year? This will give me a additional chance in the lottery if the transfer doesn’t go well.

        Thank you.

    2. Helen

      Hi Kumar,

      I was let go from my job on Jan 23st, and I’m on day 45 (15 days left) in my grace period. I’m expecting to get a job offer in the next 2 days, but given the time it takes for background checks, drug tests, etc. to go through, I don’t expect the employer will start the visa transfer process until a week later.

      What should I do now? I know USCIS takes about 10 days to issue a receipt. Do I need to receive the receipt by day 60, or do I need to start working by Day 60, or does the employer need to submit the transfer petition by day 60 in order for this to be in the clear?

      P.S. I also received 3 weeks of severance pay. I read on another blog that it might help increase the 60 day grace period. Does that make a difference? My official last day with my former employer was Jan 24, and I don’t know how USCIS could know whether I had severance pay.

      Thank you so much.

      1. administrator

        The rule is to have a receipt by the time your 60 day expires. The official last date is what matters, as they use the day for counting it…The payment is not the key date…Discuss with your new company attorney and then take a call on what to do. Worst case scenario, you may need to leave and come back…

        1. Helen

          Hi Kumar,

          Thank you so much for your reply! My new company filed for my H1B transfer on my last day of grace period. Due to the suspension of premium processing, I still haven’t received the receipt and it’s almost day 70. Given the pandemic, travelling isn’t really an option right now, as there’s a possibility I won’t be able to return to the US from abroad. What could happen now? Is the best thing to do wait until I get the receipt? Thank you so much.


          1. administrator

            These are really unprecedented situations for many, so USCIS would consider that in future. Please keep documentation that says why could not travel out like flights cancelled or your country not letting you in, etc. Discuss with your attorney and then plan it out.

  3. Anna

    In the same situation
    Hi. When my next employer applied for H1B transfer for me, they put the starting date as “1/15/2020” (because they were unsure when it would get approved, they put a quite early day). It turns out, my last day with my current employer is 2/7/2020. If I take 2/8/2020 – 2/16/2020 off (being out of employment), and start my next job on 2/17/2020, will the 2/8 – 2/16 be counted as “grace period” utilized during the new validity period, which means, I can’t have even one day out of employment during the new validity period going forward?
    If in this situation, 2/8 – 2/16 be counted as “grace period” utilized, how about if I leave my current job on Friday, 2/7/2020, and start the next on Monday 2/10/2020? Will not being employed over the weekend be counted as “grace period” utilized?

    If so, would you please offer any advice how to handle this situation in order not to impose any potential risk in the future?

    Greatly appreciate it.

    1. administrator

      Technically you cannot have break on H1B…unless, you lost your job…Again, this is very much a grey area, I would suggest you talk to your attorney and take the decision. The other option is you join the company and take the vacation…asking them for the break…It solves the issue with status break, if any.

      1. Anna

        Thank you, Kumar. Say my last day with my current employer is Friday, Feb 7th, do I need to start with my next employer on the SAME day to eliminate any chance being in grey area? Thank you.

        1. administrator

          Yes, ideally, next day as you are working for one company only on a day..If it is just a weekend or holiday, should be ok…

  4. UB

    I was laid off Nov 1st 2019. Did a transfer to a consulting company but the project did not go through and on bench with an RFE. But now Jan 17th have a offer for a permanent job and I have to submit last 2 paystubs for the visa transfer. Since I don’t have paystub from the consulting company, will it be an issue for the new transfer a full time position.

    1. administrator

      Well, it could be…the reason is, you were not maintaining status right ? If you file for transfer with continuing of status, it may create issues. The issue is you have exceeded over 60 days of grace period…so, it can come up. It is better to file as Consular processing and get stamping done….again,I suggest you talk to your attorney and then take an informed decision and double check on this.

    2. shr

      If you had already started your employment with consulting company even with transfer receipt then they should issue you paystub. Ask the consultancy to provide pay and paystub after your 60 days grace period and that is just for 17 days. I was in similar situation last year, was laid off on Jan 24th 2019 and found a consulting job from employer A on march 25th ( on my 59th day of grace period). I was not on bench and they were paying me. I got full time in July 15 and by them my petetion with Employer A had received RFE and they hadnt still responded. The new employer B filed through regular processing based on my I 94. I got my approval with employer B last week without RFE. My suggestion is check with your new employer attorney. Our attorney suggested in my case to apply in regular processing and if USCIS has issue with your status they will approve with consular processing. If not they will approve it regularly.
      If you had an offer letter with start date with consultancy then they need to pay you as there is no concept of bench on H1B. Dont hesitate to ask them your pay as most consultancies are misusing the system too. Without paystub it would be a gamble as you would be deemed out of status for 17 days.

  5. Mounika Challa

    I was laid off on Oct 31st and was on H1B grace period. I got receipt on December 20th, I started working on December 30th, which is exactly on 61st day after grace period. Is it legal if we start working on 61st day on grace period.

    1. administrator

      Well, I am not sure, if they are really that particular here as they have sent you the receipt notice…As it was a difficult situation for you, USCIS may give you grace period. I would suggest you check with your attorney and get it corrected, if needed. If possible, check with HR and move it by one or two days, if you are worried…

  6. Monalisa


    I was terminated from my previous company on October 31st 2019, I filed for a H1B transfer from new employer on December 18th 2019 and I got my receipt in hand on January 4th 2019, but the H1B receipt holds the notice date as December 20th 2019, which is within sixty days grace period. In this case,can my employer run the pay-roll from December 30th 2019 before receiving the receipt in hand as we got to know they accepted our application on december 20th 2019 itself, because cheques were cashed on that day. Please advise.

    Thank you

    1. administrator

      Well, the notice date is what matters for all aspects. So, technically yes..But, I would suggest you check with your attorney to be sure.

  7. Vee

    I got laid off from employer A. Before layoff, I applied for H4 EAD renewal which is underway. In the 60day grace period, I got offer from employer B who are in the process of filing for H1visa. What happens to the H4 EAD renewal petition already filed when H1 was with employer A? Do I need to withdraw that? Do I need to file another one H4 EAD renewal petition along with H4 visa with employee B? Please advise. Thanks in advance.

  8. Sreejith


    I have my current i-94 (issued at port of entry) valid till April 2021 which I was able to secure through employer A. I switched to employer B and the new petition thru B is valid only till AUG 2019 . Employer A withdrew my petition. B applied for extension again now and I am waiting for the result.
    If this extension is denied, does it mean that I have to leave the country immediately ?
    In cases like these , which i-94 matters (the one issued at port of entry or the latest i-94 on the new petition number ?). Going by your topic , if I understand correctly if the extension is denied , I would be out of status correct ? But the i-94 website still shows 2021

    1. administrator

      Yes. Well, that I-94 that you got at port of entry would have been reduced to Employer B’s I-94 when they applied for transfer…What did the I-94 say for employer B ?
      Yes…The one on the site of CBP is only for entry into country, it does not have any significance after that, if you change employers….I would suggest you speak to attorney as well on this and confirm.

  9. Seshu

    Hi Kumar, I have a question related to Employer A’s location amendment to client 1 and employer B’s H1b transfer ( to same client 1).

    1. Can employer A’s location amendment can be withdrawn while my transfer to employer B is in progress? Is this a good move to withdraw employer A’s amendment while I transfer to Employer B ?

    2. What will happen if transfer to employer B gets denied ? Given my i-94 is valid till 2021 with employer A.

    3. If no.2 happens, does that mean I was out of status working in amendment time at client 1 ?

    4. I already started to work for client 1 with new employer B based on transfer receipt number. Is this a problem to work at client location based on receipt number when transfer is in progress ?

    Please help

    1. administrator

      You are now with Employer B already, so what happens with A does not matter. All that matters is, when you started to work for B using receipt, were you in status and your I-94 was valid, if so, it should be fine…if not, then you are in bridge situation. Discuss with your attorney at B and get clarified on your situation…

  10. KVR

    I’m working on receipt with Employer B from past 2 years.My H1B transfer got denied twice with Employer B and Employer B filed another petition.

    My I-94 with Employer A is still valid until Oct 23 2019 and they didn’t withdraw the petition.

    I’m planning to go back to Employer A. Employer A needs 2 to 3 months recent paystubs to reinstate and apply H1b amendment/Extension.can they use Employer B H1B recent pay stubs ?

  11. Dora

    I lost my job due to layoff – my last day on F1 OPT Extension is Sept 20th and my approved H1B tied to the same company kicks in on Oct 1st. The company will legally exist with only one employee.
    1. Would I still have the 60 days grace period after Sept 20 – although I lost my job before I even started on H1B?
    2. When terminating my employment, the company will also have to withdraw my LCA – before I even started my H1B. Is this a problem?
    3. I think this also means I cannot start working when receiving the receipt notice, only when my requested changes were approved. I guess I can premium process that so I should be fine if I can send in the new application ~3 weeks before the 60 days would expire.
    Any suggestions, comments are welcome

  12. Aditya

    My last day with Company A is 13th SEP and new employer B filed my H1B transfer on 23 Aug (before 20 days of last day with A). Now based on my understanding I can join employer B any day. My I-94 is valid for another till Oct 2021.
    The H1B transfer with Employer B has received RFE. If this RFE results in denial after 13th SEP am I eligible for 60 days grace period?
    If I start working at Employer B based on the receipt of the application at USCIS and if the RFE results in denial am I eligible for 60 days grace period or can I continue the grace period form Employer A?

    1. administrator

      Yes you can join them. Well, that grace period would be based on first one. Denial does not give you grace period…only layoff.

      1. Aditya

        Dear Kumar,
        Can I continue the remaining 60 days grace period from Employer A?
        Employed to transferring employer VS not Employed to transferring employer
        Scenario -1 : If I am in H-1B status and employed with an employer A, and if the new employer B files a Petition to transfer the H-1B, and if i do not transfer my employment to a new employer B based on the receipt notice and if the Petition is denied, and I am in H-1B status and not employed by Employer A and during 60 days grace period.

        Scenario -2 : If I am in H-1B status and employed with an employer A, and if the new employer B files a Petition to transfer the H-1B, and if i do not transfer my employment to a new employer B based on the receipt notice and if the Petition is denied, and I am in H-1B status and not employed by Employer A and during 60 days grace period.

        1. administrator

          It is super confusing. There is nothing like transferring employment. You either work for them or not. You need to work for someone all the time to be in proper status, if you lose job, then you are in grace period…That’s the bottom line. Read the above article again.

  13. Chand SK

    Hi Kumar,

    I got my H1b approved last year (2018 to 2021) and I stayed with my employer from Oct 1, 2018 to till date at Client A. Anyhow, employer is running out of business and laying me off. If he lays me off, will I get 60 day grace period ? Is it recommended to transfer my H1b to different employer ASAP on premium processing ? and work for same client A ? or look for different client with the new employer whoever is filing my transfer ?

    Also, if new employer transfer is denied or something, can i go for PhD program and keep it on hold until the transfer decision comes out ?

    Pleasee help __/\__

    1. administrator

      Yes, you would very likely get it. Yes, that’s the better option to transfer. It is your choice, you can work for same client or find others as well, it doe snot matter. Well, I am not sure how you would get a PhD admission in 60 days…Even if you get, I am not sure, if that is the right thing to do for you in the long run…try to find another employer and ask couple of them to apply for transfer in premium, at least one will get approved.

  14. Ashu


    I resigned from Company A on 26 Jun and got new employer B file my H1B (petition # in hand) on 16 Aug (within 20 days grace period). Now based on my understanding I can join employer B any day. My I-94 is valid for another 1 year.
    But my question is since I am joining on petition # what happens If my H1B transfer gets rejected any time either during in my grace period (i.e by 26 Sep) or after that (assuming RFE comes and whole process gets dragged for few more weeks. What will be my options here.
    Will I go out of Status or will I have some more time.
    In the case of denial if I want to move to H4 . Will I get enough time to move to H4? Thanks in Advance!!

    1. administrator

      After 60 days, your grace period technically ends, even though your I-94 is valid. You need to maintains status, just having I-94 validity does not matter. Read Period of Authorised Stay
      If you get denial, you will not have any time left, you need to leave immediately. Technically, you are out of status the day you get denial, you cannot do the COS. Discuss with an attorney and then take decision.

  15. Somu

    Hello there,
    Can one someone shed some light on following:
    current employment was laid off Jun 30th. New employer A filing in normal and wants to join on receipt. 60 days grace period is ending by ~Aug 30. Another employer B gives a offer and files after 60 day, 2nd petition have to be dependent on the 1st one approval or will it be independent ?

    1. administrator

      If you file after grace period, then you may be in bridge situation and you would be dependent on the petition filed by A. I-94 validity also matters…It is advisable to check with attorney and plan accordingly.

  16. Nital

    I was on H1B visa and i got a lay off in Feb 2019 and then got 60 days grace period . so before finishing grace period i have filed for h4 visa ( still waiting for approval) and just now i got employer who has filed my H1B . so will it be from H4 to H1B or H1B to H1b ? Am i eligible legally to work based on H1B receipt ? My previous employer H1B is expiring next year .

    1. administrator

      It is a tricky situation for you as you are in something called as period of authorized stay. and you do not have full status. If your I-94 was expired, Your H4 will be considered bridge for status. I suggest you check with the attorney of the company that H1B offered. There may be risks associated. You can go for consular processing for sure, but for immediately working, not sure, if it would work as you do not have lawful status now, if your I-94 expired. Talk to your attorney who handles the H1B case.

  17. Curious Aspirant

    If a new employer files my I-129 well within the grace period, say on 30th day, can the start day of new employment be on or after 61-st day without having to go out of USA?
    As far as I understand, the 60-days period is a period of authorized stay and a transfer must be filed by then, but should the new job also begin by 60-th day?

    1. administrator

      Technically, your grace period ends on Day 60, meaning after day 60, you need to be employed or be in other status to avoid accruing unlawful presence. Yes, you may technically wait until last day, but it is a fine line…

  18. Ravi


    I resigned from employer A and submitted the petition to immigration as a new employment(not transfer of visa) for employer B after 25 days from my last working day from employer A. I applied premium processing and not yet received the case number. What would be the reason for not generating the case number and please suggest what needs to do now.


  19. VeeruK

    Hi Kumar

    I am currently working on H1B visa, which is valid until December 4, 2019. I applied to graduate school and got admitted into PhD program for Fall 2019 term. The semester start date in I-20 is August 20, 2019. My change of status from H1B to F1 visa has been approved, effective July 23, 2019.

    If my last working day on H1B visa is July 8, will I be considered out of status from July 9 until July 22 (since my F1 status starts on July 23)? What will be my status for these days during the transition from H1B to F1?

    1. administrator

      Well, technically, you do not have an official status during that period as you are not on H1B anymore. You maybe using the 60 days grace period…The grace period only comes in, when there is a job lay off and you apply for new H1B. The grace period is entirely a USCIS discretion thing and you cannot assume and take that 60 days grace period. I would suggest, you discuss with your H1B attorney or your DSO once to make sure you can use the same or if you need to do anything.

      1. VeeruK

        Hi Kumar

        Thanks for your response. I am planning to work until July 22, 2019, after giving my 2 weeks notice on July 8. I asked about July 8 as worst case scenario, in case my employer wants me to leave on the same day I give my notice. Does that mean it will be considered as layoff/termination, instead of my resignation? Will I be OK if I work until July 22 so that my visa status changes to F1 from July 23, 2019?

        1. administrator

          If you have such agreement with employer, it is better to quit on July 22, so that your status continues without any break to F1 on July 23rd.

  20. choudhary

    H1B got denied but which ever client I am working they are applying full time now with Different role?

    I have left Company A on Jan 4th 2019 and Company B join on Receipt . Company A revoked the H1B on March 20th 2019.
    But Company B H1B transfer got denied on Jun 14th 2019.
    But Company C applied LCA on Jun 7th 2019 and LCA approved. And file H1B now as Full time. C company is client for Company B

    What will be the next steps

    Will I have 60 Days Grace period or not?

    Note : Company A I 797 – I 94 Valid till Jan 2020

  21. rajesh

    I lost full-time Job on 5th May with Employer A, I had an approved I-40 from 1 year from Employer A. so I have 60 days of grace period before I am out of status, I got a job at employer B(EVC Model) and H1B receipt came on 6th June and I joined them on 10th June as the employer was not willing to wait for any single day. I got another better offer from Employer C(EVC Model) they got my LCA approved and filled by H1B June 10th which reached and accepted by USCIS on June 11th in regular processing, I want to work with Employer C, its good technology, money and close to my home. The Client for Employer C wants me to start only when I receive the H1B receipt hard copy, we tried to convince that I can start once the H1B reached USCIS as the receipt will have the date for 11th or 12th June 2019.

    Should I continue with Employer B till my Employer C receipt is in hand or should I leave Employer B now so they can’t run my paystub as my 60 days period ends July 4th and after that I will be stuck with Employer B as they will be the prime owner of my H1B?

    if my Employer C wants to upgrade my petition to premium , can they do it now or we have to wait for Employer B to withdraw my petition.

    1. administrator

      The general guidance is that you need the receipt notice to start working. You could be in potential bridge situation, if you have applied for C after you started to work at B and then applied for it. Check with your attorney as it can be tricky situation.

  22. Tina

    Hi Kumar,

    Thank you for this detailed article on the “grace period”. I am in a situation where I got laid off 20 days ago. Meanwhile, I interviewed with a new firm and fortunately they’ve agreed to file for an H1B transfer under premium processing. Their attorneys have not started on the application yet.

    Meanwhile, I have international travel plans (to Mexico) coming up in a month’s time and was wondering what would be the repercussions if I left the country (US) for Mexico while H1B transfer is in progress.

    1. Would you advise traveling internationally in this situation?
    2. If it is doable, should I request them to file for an advance parole along with the H-1B transfer application?
    3. Do I need to apply for a Mexican visa while I’m in “grace period”?
    4. If the H1B is approved, would I need to wait it out in Mexico to get a new visa stamped in US consulate at Mexico or can I fly back with new I-787 and old visa stamping?

    Thank you,

    1. administrator

      1. Until you have approval in hand, I would advise you to hold on and not travel internationally, unless it is critical…Because, you need valid stamp to enter, and also valid employment to work in US. When you enter, you do not have approval right, so it would be difficult…
      2. Speak to your attorney on this.
      3. To go to mexico, you need valid US visa, that’s it
      4. If approved, and your stamp on passport is valid, then you can return normally. But, even with stamping, if you do not have valid approval and job in US, then you cannot enter…
      Discuss with attorney as it is tricky situation with pending H1B.

  23. Rm

    Hi, Resigned from H1B and filed for H4 before leaving. Received a receipt and got approved on 4 months. BUT received an automated call after ~6 months for being placed in removal proceedings. Called attorney they said that’s a separate agency and no way for them to confirm. But asked to keep an eye on the mail and phone for another call. USCIS call center said they can’t find any record in the system. Is there a way to verify ?

  24. Suresh

    1) Employer B filled Transfer in normal assume i will get RFE or approval after 3 months.
    2) Left Employer A and joined with B based on receipt. Employer A send a withdrawn letter to USCIS with in one week after my last working date.
    3) I got another offer from Employer C within 30 days and they are going to apply transfer.

    Can i resign Emp B and join Emp C within 60 days Grace period ? Or still it considered as bridge application? what is the best way to handle this?

    1. administrator

      If your I-94 is expired, you could be in bridge situation, talk to your attorney. Also, the grace period is not always applicable to you resigning and joining, USCIS has discretion to not give you grace period, it is typically used for layoffs.

    2. RM

      Hi Kumar, thank you. I am in the US and my H4 recently approved after 4 months. I did not receive any letter for removal but I received an automated call that I might be placed in removal proceedings. Then I called the USCIS helpline and they said everything looks OK in the system. So my question is would that have been a hoax call or is there is a way for me to verify whether everything is OK from the paperwork and immigration status standpoint ?

      1. administrator

        It is FAKE for sure. USCIS NEVER calls you directly with an automated message that you are in removal proceedings. They will first inform by official mail, if any issues. Check USCIS Scam Calls to get an idea. Also, use the tools here on USCIS website to report scams. Check your I-94 online to verify, if it is all good with valid dates. If you are still not convinced, visit USCIS office using their Infopass option and meet an officer. Also, for the community benefit, can you share what the actually was, what was asked and all details here or in User Experiences Section

  25. Juliet

    Aloha! I have a question regarding the H1B1 transfer process. I’m an elementary teacher in Hawaii under a Singapore H1B1 visa, intending to apply for a H1B1 renewal/transfer under my new employer in Washington state. My visa ends on May 31st. For the past few years, I’ve been on a visa extension starting on June 1st and ending on May 31st the following year, since I have been with the same school and have taught summer school in addition to the normal school year. When my new employer in Washington applies for a visa transfer/extension renewal for the new school year, I’m quite certain that employment will not begin till August 1st. Given the 60 day grace period, will the later start date affect the H1B1 renewal/transfer process? Or should I request for the visa to begin before August if that is somehow possible?

  26. Pratik


    I am currently working for Employer A and Employer B has already transferred my H1B visa with a start date May 1, 2019 (example). I have received my new I797 of Employer B. Can i quit my job on April 1, 2019 and take a break of 30 days before starting my new job with Employer B on May 1, 2019? Will my 60 days grace period start? Even if it starts, having a valid H1B from May 1, 2019 create any issues?

    If there won’t be any problem, then can i travel internationally and re-enter with my Employer A visa stamp + Employer B I797?

    NOTE: H1B visa stamp from Employer A is valid until 06/2020 and I94 admission is up to 06/2020.


  27. Satish


    I am Stem opt ,on valid F1 visa.I am cap exempt on H1b ,as I have an H1b from jan 2013 and my current employer applied for h1b on sept 26.My stem opt ends on Feb 4 and it seems premium processing which was supposed to reopen on Feb 19,may or may nor reopen.

    I am eligible for H4 EAD ,so If I go to India,get H4 stamped and come back to US apply for EAD and wait till H1B is approved or premium restarts and will later do consular processing of H1b so that I continue working on H4 EAD and then H1B .–Will coming back to US on h4 ,will it affect my HBb petition?

    Can i convert my current H1b petition from COS to Consular processing ?

  28. Crazy_Case


    Need help with below information.

    My H1b is going expire very soon. Company B has already filed the LCA, but I suspect it will get certified after day or 2 from my H1B expiration date.

    My question is – can I do H1B transfer after H1B has expired but with a valid I94 ? Is it possible ? Will USCIS process H1B transfer if petition is received by USCIS after 2-3 days or at max within a week after H1B expiration but before I-94 expires ?

    Please advise guys..
    @Kumar your inputs too please.


  29. Abc

    Hi Kumar,

    a) Due to some pressure at work I had to quit my full time job ( on h1b).
    Once notice period is complete, can I search for a new employer and have my h1b transferred by taking advantage of 60 days grace period while still in USA? My i94 is still valid for another year.

    B) Is it cap exempt if I return to my home country and try to come here via by transferring my H1 to another employer.

    Please kindly guide me.


    1. administrator

      a. Well, you can…but, as it says, it is up to the discretion of USCIS and usually meant for Layoffs…The ideal thing to do is, you search for employer and have them file your H1B before your last date at current company and then you start working for them based on receipt notice…In this case, you do not use the 60 days grace period and considered like a normal transfer.
      b. Yes, you will be cap exempt.

      1. Abc

        Hi Kumar,
        Further, I’m not planning to search for new employer. How soon should I leave the country after my last day at the company. I mean will I have two weeks Or 10 days to wind up.


  30. Ronak


    I have a valid H1B stamped visa till Sep 2019 and have stayed in US for more than 13 months and returned back to India couple of months back. Its unlikely that my current employer would send me back to US before my visa expiry.

    Can companies be able to transfer my H1B while i am still in india? Also what if i cant find an employer who can transfer my petition before my visa tenure expires? Will i loose out on it? I heard that they would be able to do cap exempt, but m not sure if cap exempt can be processed with expired petition.

  31. Nagesh

    Hi, thanks for the detailed information on this topic. However, it does not say exactly how we can know if USCIS has shortened the 60 days for a particular case. Let’s say person A has lost job and has filled for a transfer with new employer in 20 days. And it took another 20 days for USCIS to respond that person A’s Grace period was only 30 days (assuming that USCIS provides that). So, technically Person A was out of status for 10 days. Is there a way to avoid this? Or is there a way to know ahead how many Grace days USCIS is going to give me?

    1. administrator

      You are right, we would not know that until we file the transfer or COS. It is up to USCIS to decide that based on case by case basis. Yes, there is the risk involved as you mentioned…but USCIS has given this grace period with the discretionary clause so that it is not abused to just change jobs by H1B holders and used only in case of dire situations like company going out of business, layoff, etc.

  32. Kumar L

    Can we just resign and automatically get H1B 60 days grace period ? Is it recommended ?
    “So, it is recommended to take the H1B grace period rule for granted and resign job and apply for transfer later…discuss with your attorney before you make any such decisions.”

    For the above question, ‘not’ is missing in the explanation provided by RedBus team.

    It is a small one n shud be fine even if it is not corrected:)

      1. Suresh Jayabharathi

        Should we apply specifically for the 60 days grace period with USCIS when someone is laid off/ quits job since it looks like it is not automatic? If so, please explain how.

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