H1B Stamping 221(g) Query – Successful Visa stamping Experience Chennai 2011

In H1B Visa by KumarUpdated : 213 Comments

One of my good friends Sri attended H1B visa interview in Chennai and initially got 221(g) query and later got H1B visa stamped in his passport after submitting necessary documents. Congratulations to him on getting visa ! He was kind enough to take time and share his experience with our readers. Thanks to Sri for sharing his experience with us. You can share your experience with our readers as well, by emailing it to redbus2us(at)gmail.com.

Background of H1B visa Interview scheduling

My initial Visa interview was on Feb 25th 2011 at the Hyderabad consulate. I’ve arrived in India on 18th hoping to submit my documents on 21st as Hyderabad consulate expects to submit all the visa documents 4 working days before your visa interview. I’ve realized that 20th is a holiday and there is no way that I could submit the documents and consequently could not attend the interview. Hyderabad consulate does not give out the list of holidays, it just posts for every fortnight or week I guess. So, I rescheduled my interview to Mar 8th at Chennai consulate.
 

H1B Visa interview Questions by Visa officer (VO):

Me: Hi, Good Morning. How are you?
Visa Officer (VO): Hi. Can I see your I 797?
Me: Yes. (Passed my I 797)
VO: Which company do you work for?
Me: My company name
VO: Are you happy with your company
Me: Yes
VO: What is your role?
Me: Programmer Analyst, I work on a compensation product for insurance companies.
VO: Can I see you client letter?
Me: Yes. (Passed it on)
VO: This does not have Work Itinerary. Do you have a work itinerary?
Me: Sorry
VO: This does say from which date you are working from.
Me: It does have the my employment dates.
VO: Yes but does not have dates from the previous clients.
(While explaining what a Work Itinerary is and during the discussion, she pulled up a blue form and started checking a few boxes)
VO: I’m putting your application through administrative processing. You need not come for the consulate for an interview again. Here is a list of documents that you need to submit at the drop box.
Me: Where can I drop them?
VO: The details are on the back.
Me: Thank you.

Documents Submission  & Response time for 221(g) Query :
After that, I’ve asked my employer for a work itinerary. He passed me on one with all the dates. I’ve submitted all the relevant documents along with my passport at the Hyderabad VFS office. After a week, I got back the entire document set highlighting a document that I’ve missed. After a couple of days, I’ve resent all of them again. After 3 weeks I got my passport back without a Visa stamp. This time, I also got another blue form with my case id on it. After another 3 weeks I got all my documents back and the original blue form  was commented “return passport”. I’ve sent my passport and go it stamped and returned in a week.
The entire process took 3 months. Had my company been a little more attentive, it could have been complete in 4 – 6 weeks.

You may also read : 6 Tips from H1B visa stamping 221(g) query


   

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Comments ( 213 )

  1. kat y.

    Hi…my h1b visa will expire on jan 2015..is it still possible for me to have an h1b extension before my visa expires in 3 months time?

  2. Madhan

    Hello sir,
    I’ve attended H1B Visa interview on 10/10/2014. I came for H1B Visa extension Say company A).
    I was given 221g Blue slip for A. Meanwhile I got the another H1B petition approved from company B. Can I go ahead & schedule Visa interview for the 2nd petition . Will it create any issue?. Please advise.

  3. Arvind

    Hi Saurabh,

    Can you please help me with my question?

    My H1 started from Nov 2011 till Sept 2014. I went to India and got it stamped too. In between my company transferred me to another place and hence a new H1 was done where the end date was till March 2015. Now both the Visa in my passport and my I-94 shows Sept 2014 as the end date where as my I-797 shows March 2015 as the end date. What should I do, in case I travel out of country during the end of 2014? Please advice me on this.

    Thank you!
    Arvind

    1. administrator
      Saurabh

      Arvind,
      Did the new H-1 arrive w/ an I-94 attached to the bottom of it? If yes, then what’s the expiration date on that I-94?

        1. administrator
          Saurabh

          Arvind,
          Did the H-1 arrived after you returned to US from your home country trip? If yes, then the I-94 attached to it is the latest I-94 and governs how long you can stay in US. You can continue to stay in US until that I-94 expiration date. It is ok for the visa stamp to get expired meanwhile.

          If you travel outside of US after your visa stamp has expired, then you will have to appear for H-1 visa interview and return w/ new visa stamp.

          1. Arvind

            Saurabh,

            I got the new I-94 before I left for India. But the thing is I went to India for a two week vacation after that. When I came back, in I-94 they put Sept 2014 as the expiry date based on the visa rather than March 2015 which is there in I-797. What should I do in this case? Is there something I can do to change the expiry date in I-94? Please advice

            Thanks!!

          2. Arvind

            Hi Saurabh,

            Change in the sense, is there a procedure to contact the department and give them my petition and the expiry date and request them accordingly to change the same in I-94? Please advice

            Thanks!!!

          3. administrator
            Saurabh

            Arvind,
            So the officer did a mistake by issuing it as per visa and not as per the latest petition.

            If you plans to leave the country in b/w (before Sep 2014), then you will get a corrected when returning to US (on the basis of your 797). If you don’t have any plans, or want to get it corrected now, then go to the nearest CBP office w/ your I-94 and 797 and explain them the error. They can rectify it and issue a corrected I-94. Alternatively, you can also file an application w/ USCIS to get it corrected, but try the CBP route first. Also, discuss w/ your attorney.

          4. Arvind

            Yes Saurabh. Thats the point.

            I can contact the nearby CBP officer for this. My passport expires in Dec 2013. So do you think I should wait to correct my I-94 till I get the renewed passport or should I go and contact them now itself?

            Please let me know

            Thanks!

          5. administrator
            Saurabh

            Arvind,
            First get the passport renewed and then go for I-94 correction. If you go for I-94 correction now, they will issue it till passport expiration date and not 797 end date.

  4. Eswar

    Hi,

    I got 221(g) query which attend on April , I submitted the required documents.
    I inquired several times with US consulate..Still i got message , is in administrative process(221(g) is on hold)….

    Shall i attend for H1B visa with another consulate taking new appointment….using same petition…

    1. administrator
      Saurabh

      Eswar,
      That will not help your case much. Will you carry same information? If yes, then it may also end up in 221g. You can look for alternate employer and then go for stamping through new employer.

  5. Sam

    Saurabh….need your expertise again….with regards to H1 Transfer…..
    1)am with Company A in US …wanted to time the resignation…if Company B files the New H1B (transfer)….I think I can start working with Company B’s Receipt….can Company A withdraw Petition at that time and jeopardize B’s application….should I wait for approval from Comp B and then resign…
    2)What does Comp B need to do for H4 during the H1 transfer so that H4 gets a new I 94 too?
    3) My current H1B petition is valid till Aug 2013, but I can get 5 months more based on time spent outside US….should Company B showcase the same and get approval till Aug 2013 + 5 mnths…

    thanks for your help

    1. administrator
      Saurabh

      Sam,
      1. A’s withdrawal will not jeopardize B’s processing.
      2. They need to file extension of status for H-4 visa holder
      3. Yes, they should show all your travel dates to capture that time and get the maximum time allowed under 6 year limit.

  6. Arvind

    Hi Saurabh,

    I have a doubt. Can you please help me?

    I was in place A and my company transferred me to place B. I work as a direct employee. When I was in place A I did my stamping in India and only after that I got transferred. For my transfer a complete new petition was filed with changed LCA and I-129. Do I again need to go for H1B Stamping? THis is because in my passport my petition number reflects the one when it was applied in Place A and now I have a new H1B petition number. Please help me.

    Thanks.

    1. administrator
      Saurabh

      Arvind,
      No need to go for stamping again as long as the previous visa stamp is valid. You can use the new petition and old visa stamp. Carry the old petition as well (may be asked for at PoE).

  7. sv

    Hi Saurabh,

    How r u, please advice? my H1B petition is gonna expire on 09/23/12, planning to go for stamping this week so if all is gud and i get a Visa then it’s going to be valid for 3 yrs or till petition expiry date – 09/23/12? this is my first H1B stamping

    Appreciate your help
    SV

  8. Jany

    Hi Saurabh,
    I am on h4.my h1 is in processing by employer A.now employer b wants me to work on h4 w2 for one direct client.Can I work on h4 w2?
    He says that it is ok and allowed.
    Do you know anything about h4 w2.

    Thanks.

    1. administrator
      Saurabh

      Jany,
      You cannot work on H-4, period. Once your H-1 gets approved, you can work for the sponsoring employer. If B wants you to work for them then they will have to file H-1 petition for you.

  9. Gauvrav

    Hi Saurabh,

    I know this page is not the right place to ask this question but I tried to find the forum to ask about green card doubts but I couldnt find it. Sorry for my ignorance. Could you please help me with the below?

    I work for a big American organization as a direct employee. I joined during the CPT/OPT stage, then got H1B in november last year for the same company. Now my green card process has to be started. Can you please advice when is the right time to start this process? Based on your advice, I can work with my people to start this process. Please help me and let me know.

    Thanks!

  10. Venu

    Hi Saurabh,

    My wife is planning for H4 stamping in India (Hyderabad). It’s an extension and in the VFS site, i saw Interview Waiver Program (IWP) , which she is eligible. I just would like to know, how long it would take to get the H4 stamp on the passport once the documents have been dropped. Have you came across any persons who used IWP . Is IWP also applicable to H1 extension.

    Thanks
    Venu

    1. administrator
      Saurabh

      Venu,
      As the program was recently launched, I haven’t seen any feedback on the processing times. Also, it is not applicable to H-1.

  11. sk

    Hi Saurabh,
    How are you doing? I need your inputs again on my visa stamping.
    I hope you could remember my case.
    <>
    Now, I transferred my H1B to one of the well known American consulting company and gotta direct big financial client as well(EC Model). I am planning to appear for the visa interview in two weeks. Here are the questions that I have.
    1. I gotta petition approval only for 6 months due to the client letter that we got. Will this be a problem?
    2. I lived/worked in US for 6.5 years in East coast and now I will be going to West coast for the new client. Anything to be prepared for the geographical location questions?
    3. Is it better to go alone for H1 or take my wife with me for H4 as well?

    I would really appreciate if you could give me some more points to prepare for the interview.

    Thanks
    Senthil

    1. administrator
      Saurabh

      Senthil,
      1. It should not be an issue. They would approve the visa only until petition expiration date
      2. I don’t think they would ask about it
      3. I would suggest everyone going together so that it get done together and you don’t have delay in flying to US (pending approval).

  12. sv

    Hi,
    anyone please help…..after finishing my MBA from US in 2009, moved to India & am working as a full time employee here. I’ve approved H1B petition dated 2009 sponsored by consulting firm in US and now i want to go for stamping and work there

    1. please advice if its k to go for stamping after holding approval since 2009 and working here all this while
    2. i have an offer letter from my employer, no paystubb as i never worked in US
    3.what can i say if VO ask me why i didn’t work in US even after having approved petition
    4. do i have to resign from my present comp in India before going for stamping
    5.do i have to carry employment related doc, paystubb from my comp in India

    please help with valuable advice in my case
    Appreciate your help
    SV

  13. Avni

    Hi Saurabh, I am on H1B visa and want to visit India (Delhi). My employer is a consulting company and my client is American. There is no middle layer (only my employer and my client). I am working for same client for last 2 years and have all paperwork. I want to visit India for 4 weeks. I am afraid if they give me 221g and I am stuck in India for a long time. What do you suggest..is it not wise to visit India? Is there any possibility that my visa will get stamped right away or because my employer is a consulting company so they will give me 221g for investigation? If yes then how long can it take?

    1. administrator
      Saurabh

      Avni,
      There is always an associated risk when going for H-1 stamping. You are working in EC model which has better chances than those working in EVC model. If you really need to travel, you can do that but make sure you have contingency plans in case 221g gets issued. If 221g is issued, there is no set processing time and it can take few weeks to several months.

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