H1B Visa 2018 News, Lottery, Fee, Predictions

H1B Visa 2018 – News, Quota, Cap, Lottery Results, FAQs

In H1B Visa by KumarUpdated : 12889 Comments

This page is constantly updated with latest news, info, FAQs on current H1B 2018 season. Below are some topics, FAQs covered on this page.

  • Start of  H1B Visa 2018 season ?
  • H1B Quota for FY 2018 ?
  • H1B visa 2018 Lottery Predictions ?
  • Plan for H1B FY 2018 Application ?
  • Find Visa Sponsors for H1B 2018 ?
  • H1B Visa 2018 Fee ?
  • H1B 2018 Lottery Results
  • H1B 2018 Petitions  Tracker – Crowdsourced
  • New President Trump Administration Impact on H1B Visa 2018 Quota?
  • Latest News updates of H1B FY 2018

H1B 2018, 2019 Season is over, H1B 2020 Season Starts on April 1st, 2019.  Check out H1B Visa 2020 – Start Date, Fee, Lottery – FAQs 

If this is your first year of H1B visa filing, you must read What is H1B Visa, Requirements, Process . Not to scare you, Last year, there was lottery for H1B season and for FY 2017 USCIS received 236,000 applications .

When does H1B Visa 2018 Season Start ?
Update : USCIS accepted H1B Petitions for FY 2018 starting from April 3rd, 2017 until April 7th. They updated that H1B Cap was reached on April 7th, 2017. 
Typically, USCIS accepts H1B petitions for next fiscal year starting from April 1st. So, for FY 2018, the start date for accepting applications would be April 1st, 2017.  But, for FY 2018 season, April 1st falls on a Saturday, so USCIS will accept applications starting from Monday, April 3rd, 2017.   If you were wondering why called 2018, when in 2017, it is the fiscal year dates that dictate that. USCIS fiscal year is from October 1st to March 30th. So, technically the fiscal year for 2018 starts from October 1st and they accept petitions for the same 6 months before the start date and it would be April 1st, 2017.  You may read USCIS Press release for H1B 2017 Start Date 

What is H1B 2018 Quota ? Regular Cap vs Master’s Cap Quota ? 
Update : USCIS confirmed the below quota cap numbers in latest press release for FY 2018. 
To get some background, read H1B Quota – Regular vs Masters .  There have been many speculations on increasing the H1B Cap due to extremely high demand and bills proposed for the same in the past, nothing made it through. As of writing of this article, below is the H1B cap quota. We will keep this article updated as new changes come in.  The total H1B Quota as of today is 85,000 and it is split like below.

Regular H1B Quota 65,000
Master’s H1B Quota ( Only US Masters Degree Eligible)20,000

Out of the above 85,000 quota, 6,800 are set aside for Singapore and Chile citizens as part of the free trade agreement between them. Also, check out the article with history of maximum H1B Cap from 1990 to 2017 

H1B 2018 Lottery Predictions ? 
It used to be a speculation whether we would have lottery in previous years, but in the past 4 years, lottery has become common. It is very likely that we would have lottery aka random selection for H1B 2018 season.  We have been writing predictions over the years and all of them have been accurate so far. Check out our H1B Visa 2018  Lottery Predictions – Data Analysis  to get an idea on how many H1B petitions you can expect for this fiscal year.

Update : USCIS Received 199,000 H1B petitions for fiscal year 2018.  H1B Lottery was conducted on April 11th, 2017.

Are you planning for next fiscal year, Read  H1B Visa 2019 – Lottery Date, News, FAQs 

When to plan for H1B 2018 Application – What should be your strategy ?
It is never too late to start planning…Depending on your situation, you may fall in one of the below categories and the suggestions are described below.

  • F1 Student in USA : If you are studying on F1 visa and about to graduate in next one year, you should seriously look at finding an internship or co-op at companies that can sponsor your H1B visa. You can search for H1B Sponsors in a particular area using our H1B Sponsors Search Tool and try to get an internship to work there on CPT or OPT after you graduate. This is a strategic move and will require sometime, so plan well.
  • Working Professional from outside USA : If you are a working professional outside US, planning to work in US, especially  on H1B visa, your best bet is to find Multinational companies ( MNCs) that have major US presence and secure a job there, so that you can position internally for applying to H1B visa, when the season starts. This is a very strategic decision, you need to carefully assess your options, speak to the company if such options exist and then only choose it. There may be many people already in-line for these visas, you need to plan carefully so that you are given a slot in the company’s filing for your next season application.
  • Other H4, L1 Visas :  If you are on these visas living in USA, your best bet is to find companies just like I mentioned for F1 students that sponsor H1B visas and start interviewing and keeping the conversation going so that you can ask them to file H1B when the season starts.

For FY 2017, we have put together a Step by Step Plan on How to apply for H1B 2017 Quota, it gives a guideline on the planning and what steps exists.

How to find H1B Visa Sponsor for FY 2018 quota ?
This is probably the most asked question by everyone. It can be a tricky decision, you need be very careful to avoid fraud.

  • If you are student in the US, it is very straight forward, you find the list of H1B Sponsoring companies using the tool in an area as I mentioned above and get an internship in one of them so that they can sponsor your H1B visa.
  • If you are professional planning to arrive in US from outside America,  it can be really tricky.  If you work for an Multinational company ( MNC), then they will have some internal process to pick the candidates and then process H1B visa for them…The other option that has been used and abused is the consulting companies route…Many a times, the H1B aspirants approach a body shop IT consulting company to file H1B for them and they apply for the same. It gets nasty with the body shop consulting companies.  The comments on this H1B Companies Reviews article are quite eye opening. I advise, you beware of the consulting companies and avoid fraud.
  • Also, WE as RedBus2US do NOT provide any guidance or assistance or sponsor anything. If someone claims that, it is pure fraud and they are trying to trick you, we are not responsible for that. Please be careful

We have an article that we wrote for previous season, you may read article How to find H1B 2017 Sponsors to find out various options.

What is H1B Visa 2018 Fee ? How much does it cost for the company ? 

The H1B fee varies by the size of the company..As of FY 2017 season, it can range anywhere from $1,600 USD to $7,400 USD + Attorney Fee. On December 23, 2016 , USCIS increased the H1B fee component of base filing fees, which was $325. The below table is updated with the latest fee updates from USCIS.  There are various fees components that make up this number range, for more details Read Summary of H1B Filing Fee 2017 – Who pays for What ? . Below is a high level summary from FY 2017 quota.  If any changes, we will update this accordingly.

H1B Fee ComponentFee in USD
 Base filing fee$460
AICWA Fee$750  or $1,500
Fraud prevent & detection fee$500
Fee based on Public Law 114-113 ( if applicable)$4000
Premium processing fee (Optional)$1,225
Immigration Attorney FeeVaries from $500 to $3000

H1B 2018 Lottery Results – Checks Cashed, Receipts : 
One of the most asked questions is when will I get to know the lottery result for my petition. Well, this depends on many factors and there is no set SLA or date.  To put things in perspective,  last year, USCIS did a news alert indicating that they have returned all the rejected H1B petitions on July 8th, 2017. So, you can expect the last date for receiving final lottery decision around mid July 2017. …As we had about same number of petitions filed for FY 2018, it may be slightly earlier or even later in July or even early August 2017…  Few of the ways you would know, if you are selected in lottery is that, if the check that was filed with your H1B petition was cashed, or your employer gets the actual physical receipt notice in mail to them. If you filed under US masters quota, SEVIS update is another indication that you were selected in H1B lottery for FY 2018.  Ideally, your receipt numbers should arrive within 1 to 2 months…but, you never know, until you get a reject notice to be sure !

H1B 2018 Case Tracker  :
Did you apply for FY 2018 ?  With premium processing suspended, it is quite hard for applicants to know the general status of everyone to understand their situation. We have put together a tracker along with good graphs for analysis. It is completely anonymous as we do not capture your case number or any personal information. It is community contributed data, the more you add, the better for everyone, including  You !

Track your H1B Case

Anonymously Track your H1B Case - Share and Get updated from Community.

New President Trump Administration Impact on H1B Visa 2018 Quota?

We do not know, if this news release is directed by Trump administration or not…but, on April 3rd, 2017 the start date of H1B season, there were set of new announcements made by USCIS to report and prevent abuse of H1B program. Check out USCIS New measures to report, prevent H1B Fraud  . Besides this, as of the today ( article updated date), nothing has been officially ordered or specifically implemented by New President Trump Administration. There are many speculations on how H1B program will become tougher with higher wages, quota limits, etc… but, nothing has been officially signed. We will update the article as new updates come in.

Various H1B Bills  in US House and Senate  – Will they be passed for FY 2018 ?
There are few bills that are introduced in 2017 and at various stages in both house and senate. There are many confusions regarding the same bills like the minimum wage will go up to $130,000 USD, etc.  Fact is that nothing has passed and there are very slim chances for them to get passed before start of FY 2018 season. You can check H1B Bills Tracker to get more details on current status. We will keep the article updated as new things are passed.

Latest News about H1B 2018 Season 
High Level Latest News for FY 2018 is listed below. But, all the Latest News are tracked on our H1B 2018 News and Updates Tracker Page. Check out below.

H1B 2018 - Latest News Updates

Most recent and complete history of all latest breaking news updates from Official sources like USCIS and Unofficial sources for FY 2018 Season.

Are you planning for FY 2018 quota ?  What are your questions ? Add your thoughts.

   

Other Articles


Comments ( 12,889 )

  1. Jayesh

    From worktheme , its very clear the EAC issuing more RFE’s and hardly giving any approvals. I am still in received status and looking out and checking status every day . Now I am only waiting for my RFE but As I have 8 years expr , wage level 1 , Title : CP so hardly it seems that of getting approval on this year… that what my mind says by looking out current situation. Really frustrating….
    Neither EAC or WAC showing any approvals from RFE’s yet.

    1. Ram

      Jayesh, all the RFEs would be responded only now. Decision after RFE response might take some more time. Right now, they might be concentrating on cases which are in received status. They might be looking to clear maximum possible number of cases in received state. I am sure you would get a positive news soon. Please hope for direct approval rather then RFE. Good luck!

      1. Jayesh

        Thanks Ram .
        Yes hope is the only thing now.
        Have you seen cases from EAC (not transfered one) where cases are approved but not being updated online ?
        If so i guess numbers are very very less as compared to WAC.

  2. raj

    On my cap-gap I 20 the status says approved. I am confused is it H1 B status or the cap-gap status because the online status still shows “case received”.

    can any one let me know What does the status in Cap-Gap I20 means. thanks in advance

    1. 3rd timer

      @raj, It could be approved. Check with your H1B sponsored employer. They might have already received the approval and not informed you. Good luck and all the best.

  3. RFE victim

    Received RFE on my case Friday last week. Do you know what are the chances of approval after an RFE? I know it depends on what the RFE is but can you give me an average number of denials so far this year?

    1. PRay

      Can u pls tell when USCIS updates its site with your RFE status and when did your Attorney receive the RFE document? Want to know the timeline as I am in same boat for last three weeks waiting to receive the RFE document…

      1. RFE victim

        I am not sure .I received the update via the online tracking tool. I still have not received my document. Attorney says should be here late this week or early next week.

      2. Jay

        In my case it was updated on Jun 12 online and attorney received it in 10 days.

        Should not take more than that for the notice to be received.

        I submitted my response also and waiting for a decision

  4. Krishna

    As far as I know – Once the H1B is approved it is valid for 6 years. If the employer revokes H1B after approval – you can find a new employer and file for transfer. Good Luck !

  5. Raman

    Finally got my H-1B approval email today from my attorneys. USCIS status is still showing received.

    Thanks a lot for all your help. Best of luck to everyone.

  6. ravi

    Hi All,
    I have finally seen an update. My case was updated to approved. The case was transferred to WAC from EAC on May 12th. I’m on OPT so it will be a COS.
    Wage Level: 2
    Occupation: Programmer
    Masters Degree Cap

    Thanks for all the updates!

  7. epat

    Hi Ram,
    Can you please advice on the scenario below:
    My wife’s was on H4 and her H1B was picked up in the loterry this year and was approved. Her H1B was filed as COS.
    She left US thinking to get H1B stamped and enter US on H1B. Now company is not agreeing for H1B stamping.
    If she enters on H4 by Sep end, can we or employer file cancellation of COS so that H1B does not become automatically active on Oct-1?
    Also most importantly if we filed cancellation of COS, can we use approved H1B petition to file cap-exempt application later on?

    1. Ram

      Some might ask you to withdraw the petition, which I would never recommend. If the petition is withdrawn before October 1, then she will not be able to use the H1B again.

      1. epat

        Thanks! Ram
        Will certainly let the forum know if we apply for COS cancellation, but considering it is not a common scenario and H1B petition being at risk, most likely my wife will enter US on H4 only after Oct-1 to nullify automatic COS. I guess once she enters on H4 after Oct-1, she will remain on H4 until she finds a employer to file H1B cap-exempt petition. Also even if employer withdraws H1B after Oct-1, she will still remain cap-exempt. Is that right?

        1. Understand COS

          COS is automatically abandoned as soon as she LEAVES USA, while it is still pending. When she returns in any visa, the COS will NOT automatically trigger. COS will only become effective if she remains in the i94 that it was originally granted to , in USA until October 1st. I think you should speak with an attorney who will confirm that. Many people actually leave the country on purpose to cancel COS.

          1. Ram

            She left US only after approval. So unless she intentionally enters on H4, after approval the COS is not abandoned.

          2. epat

            I have checked with the attorneys. Since she left US after COS approval, if she enters anytime before Oct-1 on H4, the COS to H1B will automatically becomes active from Oct-1.
            It is only when she enters after Oct-1 on H4, COS will be superseded with H4.
            This has been explained in the below link as well.
            https://www.murthy.com/2016/06/02/travel-after-change-of-status-approval-with-future-start-date/

          3. Understand COS

            I stand corrected. Yes, I confused it with the process if she left before COS approval. Thank you.

  8. P.

    I was starting to think there’s was something wrong with USCIS website as I’ve only been getting “Case Pending” since April 11th. Today, I got RFE Was Mailed, waiting to see what they as requesting. Best of luck to everyone!

    1. tcs_hope_Is there any one on the same boat?

      I am still waiting for lottery result. When I contacted my employer regarding this, they replied ” we are yet to receive rejected cases” I have few questions:
      1: have all the rejected cases been returned till 28th August 2017or still employers yet to receive some of them?
      2: Most of the cases I know, got rejection mails except one or two of us. Does that mean, my case got picked in lottery but my employer will share the details only when my petition will be approved?
      3: Is there anyone else on the same boat and not received lottery selection mail till now?
      Thanks in advance!

    2. tcs_hope_Is there any one on the same boat?

      tcs_hope_Is there any one on the same boat?
      I am still waiting for lottery result. When I contacted my employer regarding this, they replied ” we are yet to receive rejected cases” I have few questions:
      1: have all the rejected cases been returned till 28th August 2017or still employers yet to receive some of them?
      2: Most of the cases I know, got rejection mails except one or two of us. Does that mean, my case got picked in lottery but my employer will share the details only when my petition will be approved?
      3: Is there anyone else on the same boat and not received lottery selection mail till now?
      Thanks in advance!

      1. Ram

        1. As per USCIS, all the rejected petitions has been returned to the employers. Source : https://www.uscis.gov/news/alerts/uscis-returns-unselected-fiscal-year-2018-h-1b-cap-subject-petitions
        2. Getting picked in lottery is remote unless for sure you know that your petition’s check has been en cashed.

        There has also been reports that few of unselected petitions got lost in mail. So you could request your employer to follow it with USCIS.

        1. TCS_CHENNAI

          same here.Not sure when we will get the updates.Have you heard of any rejection or selection in past 2 weeks?fdfu and visa team says to contact ISU RMG.

          1. tcs_hope_Is there any one on the same boat?

            Yes. Today itself visa team replied to one of my colleagues mentioning his case is not selected in lottery and system will be updated soon. I think now only rejection updates will be shared as all the selected one already got mails before 31st july 2017.
            So better luck next time!

  9. varun

    One of the big consultancy filed visa for me. Currently my visa is in approved state. But my HR consultant is asking to me wait till next July as they don’t have any opening for my profile. What should I do ???

    1. Ram

      If your company permits, you can look for your own project and talk to HR file an amendment and travel. Else, you can wait till October 1, transfer your visa, get it approved and travel.But this might again take 6 months if filed in normal processing. If Premium processing is started again, you can get the result in 15 days. Or the final option is to wait:(
      You can decide on what to do. Good luck!

        1. Kirti

          I do not think it is impossible. I have got a colleague who did the same. She had to wait for a project for many months after getting H1B. So she found a employer who was ready to do H1 transfer, she got a transfer and is now working happily.

          1. When?

            Was it a long time ago?
            Because I read that USCIS has become strict now and are not approving such transfers?

  10. Advait

    Hi Ram,
    I was selected in the lottery but have not received an approval/RFE yet. Is it taking longer this year for approval notices to go out?

    1. Ram

      Don’t worry. You might get an info soon. This year please do expect delays in processing as there is no PP for petitions. Good luck!

  11. Iron Man

    Hi Saurabh, Kumar, Other Admins,

    Thanks for having such informative website. I have been following your website for more than 3 years now and it is my source for all news related to H1B.

    I got my H1B approved and stamped in Nov 2016. In April 2017, my employer filed an amendment for me which went into RFE. I traveled to US in May 2017. My 1st employer has responded to the RFE and the status on USCIS website has changed to indicate that they have received the response and have started working on it.

    Now, I have decided to move to a different employer who is telling me that there is no concern in visa transfer as long as the current visa stamp is valid(it is valid till late 2019).

    Is it safe for me to switch employers with the current RFE? I searched various forums but found different answers everywhere. Could you please suggest what to do?

    Thanks,
    Iron Man

    1. Indians are the best!!

      Of course you can start work for another employer! While visa and I-94 is valid, you can work wherever and whoever you want!
      also please share it with your friends and family that they can do it too and work anywhere!! Spread it to everyone!!
      It is hidden feature, everyone can work anywhere but all just hide it because they scare your professionalism!!

      1. h1bind

        @saurabh shah

        It’s long journey.

        1. H1b applied 2016 May
        2. Picked in lottery.
        3.RFE (for SoW)
        4. Denied(My employer didn’t tell me the denial reason)
        5.went for appeal. (MTR).
        6.approved in Aug 2017.

        I have scheduled my interview with conulate Sept 15- 2017.

          1. h1bind

            Ram,

            My visa interview(sept-15, Hyderabad) was successful.

            The questions were so simple.

            1. Who is your client.
            2. Role & Responsibilities.
            3. Salary ?
            4.Highest acedamic qualification ?

            Then golden words…you visa has been issued.

            Thanks and wish all the best everybody.

    1. Ram

      So far Visa stamping seems to be smooth. Everyone who appeared for stamping got their visa successfully. I hope yours will go through successfully too.

  12. Akshay

    Hi All. Could you please help me out with this?
    My H1B was approved . But I got laid off. My employer is keeping the visa active till Sept 15. After that they will revoke it. Can I still transfer the visa to another company before Oct 1?
    Can they revoke while the transfer is in process? Do I have to wait till Oct to transfer?
    Please provide your input. Thank you.

    1. Ram

      Transferring visa(FY2018 approvals) before October 1, is bit risky right now. Few gets approved and many gets rejected. If you want to try, you can go ahead and try but there is a high probability of denial. If you can request your previous employer and initiate transfer after October 1, its much safer. Good luck!

    2. Ram

      When the transfer is in progress, previous company can withdraw the petition. But if petition is withdrawn before October 1, you will never be able to use it. If its done after October 1, you can still transfer it to other company.

  13. Kg

    Hi,

    I was on L1b in from feb 2012 to feb 2017 (5 years)thru indian company A.. Us company B applied for H1b in Apr 2017. The h1b petition was approved and valid from october 2017 to july 2018. I am planning to enter US in March 2018 (1 year gap)so that I could reset my tym spent in US. DO I need to again go through lottery in 2018 to be able to continue to work for company B?..

    1. Ram

      Your H1B is already approved. You can apply for extension before 4-6 months of visa expiry(H1B). You can get your H1B stamped, travel and start working for company B. You can extend your visa maximum up to 6 years.

      1. Reset rules not met

        The timer does not reset in this case unfortunately. You can only get 1 more year stay on this h1 unless you get a 140 approved within that one year. The timer is reset only when you “apply” for an h1 after one year. If your l1 stay ended in Feb and you applied for an h1 in April, that h1 is always going to be in the same total 6 years count. If you applied next year April, that is a fresh 6 years h1. You can talk to an attorney and confirm.

        1. Kg

          Thank you.. this what attorney was also saying. Even if I spend two years in India, they can only recapture 1 year for current petition and has to go for new lottery next year. I always thought if I stay 1 year it will reset my timer. So in order eligible for applying lottery next year I have to spend 1 year right outside?

          1. Another option

            Yes. However, there is a better option if they are ok with applying GC for you. They can start the GC process with you in India and get the 140 close to approval. Then you travel and get a 1 year i94. Once the 140 is approved the visa can be extended for up to 3 more years

  14. Third Time Lucky but yet unlucky !

    I got an update today via USCIS App that my petition for form-129 for H-1 COS from L-1B was denied.
    Non-AD/Vermont
    PwC, Manager, $130K, Dallas

    Case was picked on 4/11,
    RFE received on 5/14(asking details about how my educational qualifications – BE from India, relate to the Job – Manager position at PwC)
    RFE response submitted on 7/12
    Denial Decision mailed today 8/24

    Company immigration team states that ocassionally, USCIS makes erroneous entries on website, and we should wait for the denial notice before developing the next strategy. Though I am not sure if this will be the case. I have heard about no updates at all, but not the wrong updates.

    I have been in US for 4+ years, and this was my last chance as I have my I-140 approved(EB2), but a long wait for priority date ( from 🇮🇳). My max L-1 date is June 2018, Valid Visa/I-94 till Nov end this year.

    My best wishes for folks who are waiting !!

    Now I have started thinking about my next options.

    Question – I was promoted to a Manager last year. Does anyone know or have taken the route from L-1B to L-1A?
    Will I be eligible for L-1B to L-1A Conversion. That can give me 2 more years to may be try again ?

    1. Taylor

      Hi Ram,
      Please help me!
      I am an English as second language teacher in MA state, CAP GAP opt extension, expires on Sept30. I just received RFE document today asking for these evidence:
      1. The petitioner. It says my employer’s documents indicated they are not hiring me for long term but temporary.
      2. Labor condition application. It says employer’s LCA( labor condition application) revealed the position described for a higher level wage, but I was offered L1 wage, they want a letter or document to explain or prove the reasons ( I worked 5 years in my country, finished MA here and worked par time on campus and then one year in my current school)
      3. License. They said I should have a teacher license provided. I don’t have one, and I am working in an international education secondary school teaching precollege students English. my major and degree is the only proof (teaching English), and my employer did it require a license when hiring me last year, and a lot of language schools do not require ESL teacher for that, I don’t know what to do at this point.

      1. Ram

        oh my god! RFEs for CAP GAP students in the August is frustrating indeed. I hope you are working closely with your Attorney to clear this. Please talk to your employer on your work Authorization beyond Sep 30th. Hope you would clear your RFE. Good luck!

    2. Ram

      May be you could look for the options to file MTR once you receive the denial notice. I am sure something better awaits you. Good luck!

    3. ImmiAdvocate

      What was the RFE about ? Did you get the complete RFE content from your attorney ?

      How did you respond to the RFE ? As per the OOH, a computer and information systems manager typically has a Bachelors in Computer Engineering .

      Education
      Computer and information systems managers normally must have a bachelor’s degree in a computer- or information science–related field. Such a degree usually takes 4 years to complete and includes courses in computer programming, software development, and mathematics. Management information systems (MIS) programs usually include business classes as well as computer-related ones.

      Many organizations require their computer and information systems managers to have a graduate degree as well. A Master of Business Administration (MBA) is common and takes 2 years beyond the undergraduate level to complete. Many people pursuing an MBA take classes while working, an option that can increase the time required to complete that degree.

      What were the documentation that was sent in response to the RFE ? Did they project you as a manager or just sent some boiler plate information ?

  15. Siva

    Hi Ram,

    In my I797 the validity is mentioned as 10/1/2917 but in the VISA I got, there is something called ‘Annotation’ which say ‘not valid until Sept 21’. So when can I travel?

  16. Siva

    Got the passport after Visa stamping. Visa stamped on Aug 17, 2017. Visa valid from Sept 21st 2017 till 2020. Had a 2 min Interview. Question asked were

    1. Who is your petitioner?
    2. Who is your client?
    3. Which location?
    4. What your salary?
    5. What is your highest Qualification?

    Then I got the golden buzzer.

    Wish you all luck for your interview.

  17. Akram

    Dear Ram

    I was in CAP GAP. OPT expired on july 4 2017. Issued RFE asking new passport.
    Q1: Do I have to go back to my country to get new passport ? İf I go do I have to take my family with me. I am in 3rd world country. Our embassy doesnt give new passport in usa. My kids go to school, or is it OK if I go myself only

    1. Ram

      You can go alone and get your passport renewed. But I am doubtful on what visa you would re enter USA? Please check with your Attorney once. I am not sure on travel during Cap Gap. If you will have to wait till your H1B is approved and then enter the country on H1B, then you will have to plan on whether to take your family too. Please discuss with your Attorney and take a decision soon.

      1. 1

        Why for renew you need to go home country. Same can be done very easily here from Consulate General office as well. Both options available either go physically or send documents by mail.

  18. Kirti

    Hi,

    My Status still shows as “Case Was Received”. Is there anything that I should be worried about?
    Is this delay expected this year?

    Thanks

    1. Ram

      Nothing to worry about. There are still many thousands of applications still in received state like yours. Kindly wait for an update. Good luck!Delays are expected this year.

  19. Raj

    Hi Friends,

    I am in seriously urgent visa issue. Suggestions would be appreciated…!!!

    I am on my initial opt from Feb 2017-Feb 2018. I have applied H1B(general quota ) through small company(a) and got picked in the lottery in April 2017 for 2018 financial year.
    I have got good full time opportunity in a good company(b). I have joined the company (b) in June 2018 on my opt visa
    Last month(July 2018) we (all employers from company-a) got update that all our H1B got RFE. My employer(a) told RFE is due to some wage level, that they mentioned in LCA filing. But they don’t provide us much information or don’t show us any letters we got. company- a seems not trying anything.
    My company(b) is ready to transfer (or) apply a fresh H1B.

    i) As H1B is picked in lottery, can I able to use the lottery and able to apply a transfer H1B through company(b) now? ( i haven’t got my H1B approved yet)
    (I heard that we can start transferring H1B even we got RFE. But do I need to have got H1B approved at least once before?

    ii) If my company(a) is not trying anything to clear my RFE. Can I contact an another attorney (not company(a) attorney), so that I can submit RFE documents.

    iii) Or just wait until April and ask company(b) to apply for new H1B in April 2018.

    Kindly please provide your valuable information and suggestions.

    Thanks,

    1. Ram

      1. You can not transfer the H1B. H1B Transfer can be initiated only after Approval.
      2. Only the Petitioner has to respond to the RFE. Though you can sought help from other Attorney, only your petitioner can send out the RFE response.
      3. It would be better if you could convince them to respond to RFE and get it approved. Then immediately transfer it to Company b. This is to avoid the time delay and lottery(if exist) next year. If no, yes you have to reapply from company b again. Meanwhile, ask company A, to withdraw the current petition to avoid denial. As USCIS would reject the petition, if response is not sent within the given deadline.
      Good luck!

      1. Raj

        Hi Ram,
        Thank you for your response.

        i)Withdrawal, denied and revoked are considered as different. (in what situations we get them)

        ii) So, if we get denied, will there be difference or impact on future applications
        In worst case , is it better to withdraw the application than leaving the RFE not responding.

        Thanks.

        1. Ram

          1. Yes they are different. Check https://redbus2us.com/h1b-revoked-withdrawal-termination-by-employer-uscis-oh-my-options/
          for more details.
          2. It doesn’t affect the beneficiary in any way unless it is denied on basis of submitting false information or breaking the law.

    2. ToofanTyres

      Raj,

      Man, Just wanted to compliment: “Deadly English” 👍

      Ram has answered your questions very well.
      Good Luck,
      🙏🏻

      1. Amar

        ToofanTyres

        Go ahead man, belittle people for not writing perfectly in their non native language . That’s how your broke a** feels good about yourself . Get over the colonial hangover man. Angrez chaley gye, toofantyre chhod gye

    1. Same boat

      Was in same boat till today 5pm. Received email and message notification from USCIS as Case approved. Was waiting all these days in frustration, hope you guys to be positive.

        1. Same boat

          WAC, NON AD, 11 YRS EXP, US consultancy, 125k. Case received on 4/11, notice received on 4/22, approved on 8/23. I think its all based on our fate because there is no specific pattern for them to pick up the case for processing. Apart from good luck i dont see anything helping here. I had gone through this for 4 months.

          Once again all the best to everyone.

    2. Adiish

      I received my approval notice over a month ago and USCIS still has not changed my online status, to this day showing “Received”. Please do wait on any updates from your attorneys! Patience, my friend!

  20. H1B_RFE

    Hello Ram,

    Looking for some urgent help from you regarding my H1B RFE case. Can you please share any contact details so that i can connect with you.

  21. sAURABH

    Has anyone here got H1b approval after level 1 wage related RFE? If yes, details please.

    My case:

    Location : LA
    Qualiifcation: MS in mech Engg
    Experience: 2 years of experience in India.
    Wage : Level 1 ($62xxx)

    Is there any potential for RFE?

  22. Any Approval in this case ?

    Anyone got h1b petition approved after showing replying to USCIS with education evaluation done by a third party to USICS if their RFE is about how the job’s skill set specified is related to the education qualification of the person

    1. Any Approval in this case

      Anyone got h1b petition approved after replying USCIS with education evaluation done by a third party if their RFE is about how the job’s skill set specified is related to the education qualification of the person

  23. Hopeful

    Hi ,
    My Employer told that My case got approved and gave me the receipt number WACXX.. ,but when I see online it is still in Received.. Can you explain what could be the reason

    1. Rambharose

      Congratulations to you for approval!!! A request to all people who get approvals and don’t see any update in the portal.. can your check with the USCIS and ask if this is their standard practice? Please guys, this would really help rest of us frustrated souls to understand what’s going on..
      Not seeing any approval update for ages is very demotivating… How can everyone’s application be not strong….

    2. Ram

      Now a days online portal is not getting updated with Approval status. There is a possibility of yours getting approved too. You can verify it by obtaining the approval notice from your employer. Congrats!!!

      1. Hopeful

        Thanks Ram.. As I don’t want my employer to test and they told they will send to stamping after remaining candidates approval

  24. Jack

    Saurabh, Kumar, All,

    Is there any news on premium processing being resume from October first week ?.

    Can anyone provide any insight into it ?

    Thank you

    1. Ram

      By the step by step process they follow, I think they may open PP for transfer, amendments next and then finally for new H1B. But for new H1B petitions, PP might be open on or after October 1 only. This is just my predictions.

  25. CTS_CBE

    Hi Saurab/Kumar,

    My H1b nomination got picked in Lottery.
    My nomination was in MA State and now I am about to travel for another client at OH. Amendment has been filed and received the amendment receipt notice.

    Question is, Can i go for stamping with the amendment receipt notice? Or do I need to wait till amendment approval ?

    Thanks in Advance

    1. CTS_T55

      For CTS associates as per global mobility team.

      1. you can go for stamping in chennai consulate with the receipt number, approval is required.

      2. For stamping in Kolkata consulate approval is required before stamping.

      Not sure why such a rule they are mentioning.

      1. CTS_T55

        Correcting the typo..

        For CTS associates as per global mobility team.

        1. you can go for stamping in chennai consulate with the receipt number, approval is not required.

        2. For stamping in Kolkata consulate approval is required before stamping.

        Not sure why such a rule they are mentioning.

      1. cts_another

        it all depends upon VO. kolkata VO is strict they have given pink blue to many if client is changed and approval is in progress. chennai some what liberal .so once u get color slips and if ur client not helping you to provide letter like sow etc petition will be revoked so that cts can move away from h1b dependent empolyer sooon. already wipro achieved this status is july itself.

  26. Madhu

    Hi Ram,
    I got RFE on last week -> ‘Request for Additional Evidence Was Mailed’ Can you please explain this, what is the response , we can provide on this. I didn’t understand this –

    1. Ram

      Madhu, your Attorney/Employer will receive RFE notice within next 10 business days. In that USCIS would have detailed what information they need from you/Company. Once you receive the notice, read it understand what they have asked for you and prepare the response accordingly. Good luck!

  27. New_H1B_CTS

    Attended h1b interview today @Mumbai Location

    Questions asked
    1) client
    2) experience at petitioner
    3) roles and responsibilities
    4) salary
    5) designation

    After that, Golden words, ur visa is approved

    1. Bad luck

      Is client and petitioner are same ? In my case my client is applaud for h1 b through a outside attorney? So who is the petitioners here ?

      1. Ram

        Petitioner is your company who applies for the visa. Client can be the same as petitioner if its an internal project. If its an outsourcing company, petitioner and client will be different.

  28. Waiting h1

    Hi My h1 status still shows pending ..how long it takes to get approve/rfe .I am currently in CAP gap will i am able to work after sep 30 th if my h1 show still in pending ..?

    1. Ram

      There is no deadline before which you might get an update. So please wait for your turn. As far as I know, you cant work beyond Sep 30. Though few Attorneys say you can work. So I would recommend you to check with your Attorney on this.

  29. Aspirant

    Hello Ram,

    can you please advise on this situation?

    I am currently on F2 visa and my h1 has been picked this cycle in lottery however it went to RFE/
    My wife’s H1 is recently approved and she will change to H1 B status from OCT 1.

    So should I get H4 visa starting from OCT 1? And if I change my visa status to H4 from F2, will it impact my current H1 B in RFE.

    Appreciate your inputs here

    1. Ram

      Is your H1B filed in COS, from F2 to H1B? If so, you might get an issue on maintaining F2 visa. They say based on H1B filing you can continue to be in USA till a decision is taken on your case. So I would recommend you to talk to an immigration Attorney on how to mitigate the issue in particular to your case.

    1. Tcs chennai

      We TCS are the only people still waiting for lottery results.many peoples have went for stamping still we are in doubt whether we are in the game or not.whenever I ask the visa team they respond the status as waiting

    1. rajat

      Hi Ram, I did contact to my employer today as my visa status is still showing “awaiting lottery result” and got a reply that “we are still waiting for the confirmation of not selected cases. My question is,
      1: Still can we expect positive news?
      2: As per news, all the not selected cases have been returned then why my employer says to wait for more days?

      1. 3rd timer

        1. Very very unlikely it has been selected at this point. One possibilities is you can ask your employer to check the status of the cheque if it was cashed. if it is then the case number will be written in the back of the image of the cheque.

        2. Some employers/ lawyers are reporting they haven’t received 100% of the un-selected petition. so, your employer also may not have received all the cases.

        3. Good luck and all the best for your alternate option and for next year’s H1B.

  30. Amrutha

    Hi Ram,
    I got RFE, i am presently on my OPT which is going to end on this sept. I applied for OPT extension, i may get it by nov.
    RFE is regarding: How is your work related with your studies? I did my MS (in CS stream) but i am working on DB(database administration) presently.
    Can you please suggest on how can we answer on this?
    And is it going to effect on my visa status?

    1. Ram

      Some of the evidence you may submit to demonstrate that your degree is related to your position includes:

      A detailed explanation of the specific duties of the position, the product or service your company provides, or the complex nature of the role you will perform, and how your degree relates to the role.
      Written opinions from experts in the field explaining how the degree is related to the role you will perform.
      Printouts from online resources describing the degree fields normally associated with the occupation.
      Evidence that similar companies in your industry require similar degrees for similar positions.
      You can get your degree evaluated and submit the education evaluation.
      Hope this helps. Good luck! Do post us the outcome.

  31. GVR

    Hi Ram,

    i need your quick reply.

    My Case was approved long back .My company has initiated my H1B stamping this month,while filling my DS 160 form i have to update my client name ,but my immigration team said which project your currently your working onsite opportunity(means ready for travel) update that project .
    is it correct ? can i update my new Project because recently this onsite opportunity i got it.
    but when i filling the petition ,i am not aware of the project details which they have updated ? same project needed?

  32. Very Worried Now

    Has anyone here got H1b approval after level 1 wage related RFE? If yes, details please.

    My case:

    Location : LA
    Qualiifcation: MS in mech Engg
    Experience: 2 years of experience in India.
    Wage : Level 1 ($62xxx)

    Is there any potential for RFE?

  33. Akram

    I am on f1 OPT. Got RFE. Question: Can I continue working during RFE period, or do I have to stop on Oct 1st till RFE results? I dont want to be outofstatus. Plz help?

      1. Akram

        I was on OPT, in which expired on July 4th 2017. Right now I am on CAP GAP I guess.
        I graduated last year, got 1 year opt ended in July 2017.
        I am afraid RFE responce will not come until Oct 1st.

        1. Ram

          If you are on Cap Gap, there is a confusion on work Authorization beyond Sep 30th. Please check with your Attorney and do update us on the same.

  34. STEM_OPT

    Hi Ram,

    Thanks for helping.

    I am on OPT STEM, working in a start up company (10 employees, 6 years old). Company filed 3-4 H1’s in past 6 years.

    LCA (EAC)
    ——————
    Bachelors & Maters (IT related). 2+ years Exp. in India 1+ years Exp. in US
    Software Applications, Developer
    $71k Level 1
    Washington DC (Min Level-1 $70k)

    I am a full time employee and I received a REF for level 1 wage and job description (some queries on clients etc but its not an issue for employer).

    When my employer posted job on LinkedIn, it was for Senior Salesforce Developer. He included the same copy in H1B packet. Now in RFE, USCIS is asking why do you need bachelors for this position? If its senior position, if bachelors required why level 1 pay which is for entry level.

    It looks like they wanted to reject as many as possible. If I say yes for bachelors required then due to level 1 wage they can reject.

    1) Did anyone get approval like this? (Senior job description, Level 1 wage)
    2) If we respond with documentation (Client letter, Job desc explanation etc) can I get positive response?
    3) If we get denial can my employer appeal and ask for reconsideration?
    4) If I get approval and in visa interview if they reject visa for some reason will I loose my STEM OPT also (valid till June 2019) ?
    5) If PP resumes, my employer is willing to covert to PP. Due to family issues,I am planning to go India in Nov end. Should I postpone my travel plans? Please suggest.

    Thanking you in advance.

    1. Ram

      1. Not sure about this as RFEs related to this are just pouring in.
      2. Yes of course. If your response is perfect, you will get approval
      3. Depends on the officer. If we wants to give an option to reappeal, it will be explained in the rejection notice.
      4. No I think. Check this point with Immigration Attorney please.
      5. I hope PP will resume and you would get a response before it. Lets see. Even if you leave, your COS will converted as CP. You can re enter US with H1B stamping(If you get approval by the time you return) or come back to US file COS again.
      Good luck to you.
      Note: While responding to RFE, kindly refer DOL OOH data and reply passed on info there.

      1. STEM_OPT

        What do you mean by refer “DOL OOH data”. Sorry, this is my first attempt and does not have idea about this. Can you please throw some light on this (or even a related link will be helpful).

        Once again thank you for your time.

        1. Ram

          DOL OOH- Department of Labor’s Occupational Outlook Handbook
          https://www.bls.gov/ooh/
          The OOH can help you find career information on duties, education and training, pay, and outlook for hundreds of occupations.
          So take your petition & LCA now and check what job title and duties have been petitioned for. Check whether those information provided is in par with the one given in the above site. Since you got a RFE, I think there is some discrepancy. Based on this data as base, work on preparing your response.

          1. STEM_OPT

            Hi Ram,

            Thanks a lot for the detailed information. Yes, there is a discrepancy in job description and OOH Data (For example: Job description says => Address inbound client requests and respond to them promptly and OOH Data says => Analyze users’ needs and then design, test, and develop software to meet those needs).

            I think, I can co-related my job duties and prepare a document. However I am still concerned about Level 1 Wage. (LCA : $71k, Washington DC (Min Level-1 $70k) for software developer).

            By any chance do you have any idea about this issue? Is there any rule that 2+ years experience people should get more than Level 1 something like that (I see many H1’s from MNC’s are failed on level 1 wage).

            Thanking you in advance.

          2. Ram

            There is no rule which states only this amount is paid for these many years of experience. Its all fixed by the employers. However DOL does emphasize on minimum level of wages.
            For level 1 wage, your Attorney is the best person to respond to it. We will have to see the job title, description and salary petitioned for. Based on that, the decision has to be taken.

        2. Sukh

          I am in the same boat as you are. I got my RFE for not being able to show that the job is a speciality occupation as well as Level 1 wage issue. I haven’t replied yet. Please let us know how you deal with the situation. Thanks

  35. Peter Dalton

    H1b Approved. AD/VT.

    I was in OPT STEM and I am from Portugal. 1st year of OPT, H1B picked but denied due to project being in-house. (2015)

    2nd year H1b picked and withdrawn due to no client letter. (2016)

    3rd Year H1b picked and approved from an American consulting firm with client being Arvato Systems (German E-Commerce Company). (2017)

    Location: New york city. Wage: $104,000 with all benefits.
    Wage Level: 2 (Labor code: 1132 Software Developer).

    Good luck to all other folks.

    1. Ram

      Wow Peter. Congratulations! You made it after a long struggle. Your story would be inspiring for many others here. Enjoy this success!! Party time..Yay!!

  36. Raman

    Hi,

    I’m currently working in US on L1 visa. My L-1B visa is expiring on 20 Oct 2017 (initial 3 years). My H-1B was selected in the lottery (filed with COS) but I’ve not received any update after that. My attorneys are saying that I should go to India in mid October and get L-1B extension if my H-1B is delayed or get H-1B stamping if H-1B is approved by that time.

    My questions:
    1. If I go to India around 2nd week of October when my H-1B has not been approved.. does it mean I’m abandoning the process? Will I face any issues because of this?

    My attorneys said there won’t be any problem if I go to India for L-1 extension and my H-1B COS will be automatically changed to Consular processing.

    I need some advice on my case.

    1. Jesus

      Yes. That is correct. COS will get changed to CP and you should be good. That’s the best route I would suggest- wait for approval until October 15, else just go get L1 renewed and meanwhile H1 processing will continue as CP

    2. H1

      Is your H1 with the same employer of L1?

      There isn’t a need to go to India. If approval doesn’t come until Oct 1st, your company can file L1 extension with you being in the US, you can continue to work in the US until a decision of L1 extension comes (assume 2-4 months), meanwhile a decision on H1 will be there. Your company can then file an amendment petition.

      If the H1 employer is different than L1, then also ask your L1 employer to file L1 extension with you being in the US.
      Going to India for L1 extension is risky. I would avoid.

  37. Miguel Lopez

    Hi

    The company where I work sponsored my application of H1-B visa. The person in contact with the attorneys told me my case was selected by USCIS for processing in the lottery however they have not received an approval. (She sent me a copy of the receipt I-797C).
    My current status is worker with TN visa which expires on Oct 16th and my I-94 is valid until Oct 26th. Attorneys recommended me to renew my TN visa asap (before Sept 30th) because if I do not get the approval and I leave the country it will be considered as abandoning the process. But I was thinking on wait until get the approval for H1-B and then schedule the appointment to apply for it, because it does not make sense to me to renew my TN if I am applying for H1-B.

    What do you recommend me? When is the latest date when H1- B visas are going to be approved?

    Thanks in advance

    1. Ram

      Miguel, Probably your H1B is applied as Change of status from TN to H1B. So its better to renew your TN. otherwise its considered that you are abandoning your H1B. Right now there is absolutely no deadline on when all the cap subject H1B visas would be processed. Many thousands of application are awaiting adjudication. All of them have been filed in normal processing were no deadlines are given. You might get the result today or after couple of months. We never know. Its better to renew your TN visa to show them that you are not abandoning your H1B petition. Hope this helps you. Good luck!

      1. Miguel Lopez

        Thanks for the response.
        1. If l leave the country to renew my TN that would be consider as abandoning the H1B application ? Can I renew my TN without leaving US? If yes, where can I find more information?
        2. I had to leave US because I had a family emergency on June. When I came back to US I had no problems to enter. Did I automatically lost my change of status?
        3. Would not be easier to ask for an extension of my I-94?

        1. Ram

          1. Please check https://travel.state.gov/content/visas/en/employment/nafta.html
          or talk to your Attorney.
          2. Yes
          3. I am not sure how you would extend i94 alone when on TN visa. Don’t you need to renew TN visa for i94 extension ?For more on this I would request you to talk to an Attorney.

        2. H1

          1. No
          2. No
          3. There is no process to extend I-94 until you file for H1 or similar visa extension. The I-94 also changes when you enter the US again.

          Wondering why you are going to H1 assuming you are either a Canada or Mexico citizen.! TN visa is more effective than H1, no LCA required & no wage restrictions.! I would keep TN visa given an option.

  38. Can't believe this is happening

    Hi ,

    My H1B was approved this week (3rd attempt) but I am being laid off this week as well. Can I transfer approved H1B to another employer?What are my options at this point?

    1. shiva

      Hi,

      Sorry for your situation.

      I think you can transfer since it is already approved, you will need your I797A notice for H1B transfer.
      As far as I know, you should try to get a H1B sponsor as soon as possible for the transfer.

      With the latest rule, H1B employees are given 60 days of grace period but since it is not yet effective for you, I am guessing you are on OPT/STEM OPT in which you probably dont have to worry about being out of status.

      This is based on my understanding and not a legal advise.

      1. Ram

        Just adding one more point to add to Shiva’s view. Please ensure that your H1B is not withdrawn by the company, if they do so, we may not be able to use it at all:( I am sure you will be able to find a better job for you. Good luck!

    2. Can't believe this is happening

      Thanks guys. I can request my company to withdraw my application after Oct 1st. I am planning to convert to H-4 based on spouse’s H1B. will i be able to transfer from H-4 to H1B later if I cant find job immediately.

      1. Ram

        Yeah if they withdraw the petition after October 1, it should not be a problem for you. Your H1B would have got approved as COS. So when applying for H4 I am not sure how you would apply, F1 to H4 or H1B to H4. So please check with an attorney on this and you can do it. Later on you have to file COS from H4 to H1B once you find a job. Only after COS (H4 to H1B) is approved, you can start working. Dont you think this looks more complicated and time consuming?
        I feel you have enough time to find a good job, you can find one, initiate transfer of H1B after October 1 and start working on H1B on getting the receipt number of transfer.
        Its just my perspective. You are the best decision maker. Good luck!

  39. H1b_CTS

    Hello All –

    I am done with my Stamping today at Chennai , below are the qsns asked .

    1. who is your Petitioner ?
    2 . what is your Client name ?
    3 . what will be your Designation ?
    4.Salary ?
    5. In which city you will be working ?
    6. Tell about your client ?

    Finally The golden words ” Your visa is approved ” ,

    Overall it was a nice experience. Good luck to all of you

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