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H1B Visa Case Receipt Number – EAC, WAC – Meaning ? Check ?

Most of the H1B Visa Applicants, who are picked in H1B Visa registration Lottery process would file their H1B petition with USCIS. Once USCIS receives a H1B petition, they would issue a Case Receipt number that can be used to track the status of H1B petition. Usually, employer or attorney would share this number with an applicant. If you are new to the process, it can be puzzling to look at the number and guess what each of that means. In this article, we will cover what the H1B Case Number given by USCIS would mean by looking at each of the letters in the H1B Case Number.

What is the H1B Visa Case Number ?

USCIS would assign a case receipt number for every H1B petition filed with them. It is a 13 digit number and typically starts with three alphabets like WAC or EAC based on where it was filed. Each set of characters mean something in the case number.

We should break down the H1B Case Number into sets of characters grouped like below:

  • XXX—XX—XXX—XXXXX
  • EAC—20—128—50345 ( example for FY 2021 Case)

Now, lets look at each of the groups of characters.

First 3 Letters of H1B Case Number EAC, WAC, LIN

First three digits indicate where the H1B petition was filed.

  • EAC – Vermont Service Center (old name: Eastern Adjudication Center).
  • WAC – California Service Center (old name: Western Adjudication Center).
  • LIN – Nebraska Service Center (LIN refers to Lincoln, Nebraska).
  • SRC – Texas Service Center (old name: Southern Regional Center).

Next 2 Letters of H1B Case Number – Year

Next two digits indicate the year when it was filed. NOT the fiscal year. Do not try to read something that says like WAC2017XXXX to think it is related to year 2017, you should only look a the two letters after the first 3 characters.

  • For H1B Visa 2021, it would be 20
  • For H1B Visa 2020, it would be 19

Next 3 Letters of H1B Case Number – Computer Working Day

Next three digits indicate the computer working day of the USCIS fiscal year that starts from October 1st. It indicates the computer work day, does not include weekends and holidays. USCIS computers do not work on weekends and USA National holidays :-). October 1st is when the fiscal year starts for USCIS. If your H1B was filed on October 1st, it would be 001. It is a little tricky with this number, computer work day indicates only working days and not weekends. For example, if it is like October 20th, it would be 16th working day or something like that…For April 12th, it would be 134 as the weekends and federal holidays are taken out. You can use wolframalpha website to ask the exact week day after Oct 1st, you will need to add federal holidays to that number.

  • For April 8th, it would be 128.

Next 5 Letters of H1B Case Number – Actual Case Number

Next five digits is the actual case number. Most of the times, it would start with a 5 for H1B Cases that use form I-129. It is also is the number that was assigned to on a particular day. There is no guarantee that it would start with 0001.

  • Sample number would be 51244

Check out  detail article: Understanding your  H1B Visa Case number

Check H1B Case Status on USCIS.gov

After you receive your H1B Visa Receipt case number, all you would have to do is to track the status on USCIS website. Read How to Check H1B Petition Status on USCIS website.

Premium Processing for H1B :

If you were to file H1B visa petition under premium processing, you would have received the case number and a confirmation email that your petition was received by USCIS and it is under processing. Usually your attorney or your employer would get that information. Once your case is approved, similar email with approval status would be updated via email.  A hard copy would be emailed after the emails to the address specified in petition.

Regular Processing for H1B  :

If you were to file your H1B visa petition under regular processing, you would not necessarily get an email from USCIS, rather you would get a hard copy receipt mailed to your employer or attorney.  Also, decision information would be mailed to your attorney or employer after decision.

You can read Steps after H1B Lottery – Flow Chart to know more on next steps

Did I miss anything ?  Any other thoughts to add ?

   

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3,680 Comments

  1. Got RFE 🙁 for my EAC1313854*** today. Don’t know when my employer will get notice and when he/me replies and when USCIS responds again… a long way to go…

    Reply
  2. EAC*********** is one series… Which one is the other one? And if I am not mistaken I can see only people with EAC series getting visa approved. Why so??? Sorry but m complete illiterate in immigration process. Can anyone clarify

    Reply
    • @Ohh No!! Why only me??

      The other Series is WAC*********.Looks like EAC is a bit active now, the case was reverse few weeks back when we were seeing Most of WAC series getting approved. BTW, was this your question? Are you in WAC and awaiting decision?

      Reply
    • EAC is the series for people who will get approvals quickly and WAC is the series for people who will get approvals with difficulty because they can’t use Google or USCIS’s website to find answers for themselves.

      Reply
  3. After replying RFE my status changed to RFE RESPONSE REVIEW on sep 10. Still it is in same status. Normally how many days it takes for USCIS to make decision and when can i see the update on the website??

    Also can some let me know the success rate of RFE?

    Reply
  4. Hi Saurabh,

    I am currently working for employer X in India. My current employer(X) wants me to travel to US for 6 months and have initiated the process as well(have not yet gone for L1 interview yet).But, now my petition for H1B got approved by an employer Y and I was told that the documents would be shared once they receive it for scheduling the H1B interview. I am in a dilemma now on either to tell my manager to stop L1 or to wait to see if H1B interview goes smooth before I talk to my manager. Would this lead to any conflict down the line with both the interviews?…Any thoughts are appreciated.

    Reply
  5. Hi Guys

    I have got petition approval on 12-Aug-2013. But my employer claims that they still not received approval notice. I searched through forum on similar topic and found that it usually takes 3-4 weeks to reach the approval notice. Mine is 5 weeks completed today (overall, not business days). Is this normal? what should I do now?

    Reply
    • Well, my employer communicated to me that they received the approval notice today. So the point is that, it can take 4-5-6 weeks to receive the approval notice

      Reply
      • really? where is ur employer? alaska mountains? jst kidding. i still somehow cant believe it can take 5-6 weeks for a parcel to reach anywhere with USA. never heard that in India so my expectation here was better or atleast same.

        Reply
  6. Hello Members,

    My Case Status changed from IR to PDA, find the comments below which i collected it from the USCIS case status site. As per the first paragraph i am assuming that my case was approved.
    But after reading 2nd paragraph i am not clear. whether its Approved or is there any queries.

    Please share your comments after reading below USCIS comments:
    ———————–
    Post Decision Activity

    On September 12, 2013, we mailed you a notice that we have approved this I129 PETITION FOR A NONIMMIGRANT WORKER. Please follow any instructions on the notice. If you move before you receive the notice, call customer service at 1-800-375-5283.

    For approved applications/petitions, post-decision activity may include USCIS sending notification of the approved application/petition to the National Visa Center or the Department of State. For denied applications/petitions, post-decision activity may include the processing of an appeal and/or motions to reopen or reconsider and revocations.

    Reply
  7. Hello,

    I have new approved H1b FY2014 from company A and planning to transfer it to Company B. Will I be able to start work for B’s Client from Oct 1st 2013 if they send Hb transfer papers to USCIS on 20th September? Please suggest what I and the company B can do to expedite the process so that we have the approval before Oct 1st?

    Thank You.

    Reply
  8. Finally got approval yesterday on Sept 11 receipt number EAC131465*
    (IT 5 years exp.)
    best of luck to all who are waiting!
    This is wonderful site.

    Reply
  9. My Petition moved from IR to RFE today on 9/11. Petition number EAC1313952XXX. RQ/RP.
    Since I had signed up to case updates, I got an email today at 4.30 PM IST.
    My question is, on an average how many days does it take for the attorney to receive the RFE notice after the status change on the USCIS website.

    Reply
      • Depends on the distance of your attorney’s place from the USCIS service center at which the visa is getting processed. The service center for my application was California and my attorney stays in Chicago. My status changed to RFE on september 4th and the attorney received the docs on 10th sept.

        Reply
    • samething same time happend to me.:) My Petition moved from IR to RFE today on Petition number 9/11.EAC1313951xxx. I got an email today at 4.30 PM IST.

      Reply
  10. Hi,

    Finally the status changed from IR to RFE (not sure whether it is good or bad) on 10th Sep. My employer sent a mail saying it will take 2 to 3 days to get the details on what USCIS requires. Hoping that everything will get cleared and my H1B will be approved. My receipt number is EAC1313853***. Do suggest what could be the common reasons for RFE and any suggestions on how to handle this situation.

    Regards,
    SKP

    Reply
    • Its just a small hurdle before approval. Dont worry!!
      Common RFE’s:
      1. EE relationship – employer-employee relationship has been established.
      2. client SOW and letter.
      3. Employer details (usually tax filed, photos etc).
      4.Employment contract
      5.A project assessment
      6.A position description
      7.Organizational chart

      For change of status if dependent :
      1. Spouse’s I797 copy.
      2. Last 3 paystubs of spouse
      3. Marriage Certificate
      Basically docs which shows spouse is maintaining Visa status in the US.

      What should your employer do:

      ** It is necessary that the RFE is thoroughly read by the petitioner as well as the beneficiary and determine the required documents to be submitted to the USCIS in order to provide evidences in regard to your case.
      ** In case of H1-B petitions, the petitioner company or the attorney receives the RFE and they need to respond back to the USCIS with necessary evidences.

      Reply
      • Thanks H1kiAag for sharing some details and keeping my expectations alive. Hope I will be able to share good news on this forum soon.

        Regards,
        SKP

        Reply
  11. Finally got approval yesterday on Sept 10 receipt number EAC1314452*
    (IT 10 years exp.)

    I did ask my employer to raise a service request with USCIS since there was no update since last 5 months (since April 8). My employer raised a service request yesterday morning and on same day I got an update -case approved.

    best of luck to all who are waiting!

    Reply
  12. Hi ,
    I just got my petition approved . For personal reason I’ll not be able to travel before mid of next year . Is there any issue in doing that ? Is the company penalized for delay in travel .

    Please suggest .

    Reply
    • Company will not be penalized, however you must give a appropriate reason for the delay when you got for stamping.. Be prepared for the proper reason…
      Also talk to your Employer/Attorney for the advise…

      Reply
  13. Hi All,

    Happy to see my status changed to “Post Decision Activity” After ganesha chathurdhi… clebrations..Wish you all the best for every one…

    Received date : April 8, 2013
    Notice date : April 16, 2013
    Receipt Number – EAC-13-137-51XXX
    Field – IT
    Processing – Regular (Not Advanced degree)

    Thanks,
    SK

    Reply
  14. Got RFE last week regarding: 1. Speciality Occupation 2. Evidence pertaining to the proffered position 3. Evidence for Recognition of Expertise 4. USCIS Determination of Equivalency
    5. Document to Substantiate Recognition of Expertise 6. Evidence pertaining to petitioner – In-House Employment. Please advise.

    Reply
  15. Ok, for weeks and weeks I was checking this great forum in silence and never wrote a post.
    it was giving me hope, my case EAC1314550xxx is H1B first time IT ,, Regular Q and Regular P
    initial review since April 8 … few min ago it moved directly to Post activity with APPROVAL .
    I thought to let everyone here knows to keep up the hope.

    Thank you and Best of Luck for all

    Reply
    • Wow !! We are on the same boat. I just got mine like a few mins back. Thanks to this forum for keeping my hopes alive and providing the wishes !! or else I would have ended up in going Premium. I always read this forum and that was only source of keeping the spirits alive. My case EAC131425**** got approved from IR since April 8th.

      Probably would have visits this page and the USCIS website like 10 times a day (even though I was subscribed to my case updates.. lol )

      Mohammed, I read your statement and went to check the website, but was still in IR. Then a few minutes later, Bam, got mine !! Phew, such a relief.

      I really wish everyone who are still in IR good luck. I promise it is just a matter of a couple of days or so before you get the decision. What a day. !!

      Reply
  16. Hi Saurabh,

    Currently i am in L1-B visa and working for X company. My H1B visa got approved with COB for Y company. So my visa status will automatically change it to H1-B from 1st october.
    When should i resign from X company? What if i resign september, 15th and X company will ask me to leave the X company imm’ly? In that case, i will be staying in US 15 days illegally. Is it better to resign on 30th september from X company for safer side?. Please advise.

    Reply
  17. Hi there,
    I have just received an email from USCIS saying that my case has gone to RFE. Can anybody please let me know , how long will it take from here to get the approval.My number is EAC131435XXXX Regular processing.
    THANKS

    Reply
  18. Hi Friends ,

    Got my petition approved yesterday . A very informative forum which kept me optimistic till date . My sincere THANKS to the moderator , members and active posters !!!
    EAC131484***
    Receipt Date : 08-Apr-13
    Approval Date : 09-Sep-13
    RQ/RP/ IT (6+ yrs exp )

    Reply
  19. Hi Everyone ,

    I just got my H1 Approved . I am outside USA . I am planning for Visa Stamping Next Week .

    Request you to please share the Document Checklist . This is my First H1 B and a New Job .

    ALso , whats the process for H4 visa for my Wife . What documents are required . Can we attend Stamping together . ANy document required from employer.

    Please help

    Thanks

    Reply
  20. EAC 13-138-519** – RP/RQ – L1 to H1 CoS

    Approved and went in Post Decision Activity directly frim IR today.

    I was also victim of – Initial Review since 8th April 🙂

    Best of luck to others..don’t give up. Don’t go to Premium now, its a matter of days .

    Reply
  21. Hi,
    I have a question. My petition got approved 12 days ago but my company has not got the approval notice yet. Can you tell me when will it reach to my company? I have to fly on 1st Oc. 2013.

    Reply
  22. Hi,

    I have a question:

    In Ds -160 form i haven’t submitted the photo … Is it compulsory to submit the photo or they will take it at the time of interview ?

    Please tell me …

    Reply
      • Thanks Dude
        1 more question—

        In DS – 160 During responsibilities section I have written whatever was in resume it is slightly different with H1B PRD ( as in resume i was slightly more descriptive and also same thing i copied in H1b ) — is that fine?

        In stay in US I have write approx -2 years in DS -160 while in H1b Prd i have written 10 months in duration of project.Will that create any problem ?

        Reply
  23. All,
    My petition got Approved last night, thanks a lot all for ur help and time..
    Saurabh, a spcl thanks to u.. This is a very good platform to know things and I really appreciate this to the core…
    EAC1314452***
    Regular RQ RP and IT
    Direct to PDA from IR – Approved on 6th Sep (IR from 8th April)
    Thanks all…
    All the best and good luck to all the people out there who are awaiting…

    Reply
  24. Hi Friends ,
    I got RFE on 6 SEP ( got email notification from USICS regarding the RFE) I still need to check with my attorney regarding the RFE .

    5+years IT exp/RP/RQ
    Fresh H1 b
    I have a lot of questions regarding my situation and need your expert suggestions .
    I am currently working on L1B visa for a Client in USA on-behalf of an Indian organzation and My VISA is valid till Apr 2014 and I94 till Feb 2016. Now one of the small consultancy have applied a Fresh H1B ( not COS) this year – i got RFE on 6SEP 2014. I am hoping if everthing goes well i will get my H1b approval before end of OCT . Small Consultancy have shown me as a direct employee . However i have offers from other organizations which are ready to absorb me as soon as i get my H1b approved (hopefully before end of OCT).

    I need to travel to india for my marriage starting last week of NOV and will be there till Mid Dec.

    i have few questions that concern me-
    1) If my H1 b gets approved , it will not affect my L1b ..right ?. I mean my VISA status won’t be changed automatically from L1b to H1b from H1b start date since i have applied fresh h1b and not COS ?
    2) Usually how much is the gap between H1b approval date and H1b start date in case h1b gets approved after 1 OCT .
    3) Is it mandatory that i have to start working on H1b start date . Can’t i continue on L1b as long as i wish and then start working on H1b when i get offer from a good organization. I am planning to work on L1 b till i return from India i.e Mid-Dec , and then work on H1 b once i join some organization here. If this is okay , i will return to US on L1b and my spouse on L2 . Will it cause any problem at time of return on port of entry . Can the CBP officer cancel my H1b at the port or L1b? If there is no risk , what questions i can expect from CBP officer ? If i return on L1b , i won’t need to stamp H1b this time and can stamp h1b later on when i leave the US again?
    4) If i join some organization using h1b starting Nov and then travel to India in last week of Nov and return to US in Mid-Dec . Will it cause any problem at the port of entry regarding the h1b ?
    5) Is it possible to join some organization on h1 b , even without the knowledge of your previous employer (small consultancy in my case) . Does the previous employer have some control over this . I mean can he hamper my joining in new organization.
    6) In case while leaving from US to India , my h1b is still in process and it gets approved when i am in India . Can i still return on L1b or Do i need to stamp my H1b and return US using the Stamped H1 b? Can’t i return on L1b without stamping h1b and then start working on h1b once i am here in US and stamp the VISA in my next visit to India. Will CBP officer create any problem at the time of port of entry ?
    7) If i travel to India and my H1b is still in process while returning to US . will there be any problem at the port of entry regarding my Dual VISA both L1 b and H1b (still in process) ?

    What will be the safest option .
    a) Upgrade to Premium processing . Reply to RFE immediately and get the h1b approved before 1 OCT . Start working on h1b before leaving to India ( last week of nov ) . What all documents are required at the time of entry at the port . since while leaving US i would have completed only 2 months . Is it safe at the time of entry or i need atleast last 3 months pay stub ?
    b) I delay my reply to RFE ( i think we get 2 months time frame to reply to RFE ). in that case since i got my RFE on 6th SEP i can reply around 6 Nov . I will travel to India on L1b and retun on L1b . even if my H1b gets approved while i am in India , i won’t stamp my h1b and continue working on l1b and Stamp the h1b on my next visit .

    Thank you for your time

    Reply
  25. Hi Saurabh/Team/All,

    i work for one of the top companies in india, and i have applied for H1 through some consultancy. luckily my receipt got selected in lottery and got RFE on 14th aug 201.3.
    we are yet to reply for RFE.

    meanwhile, i got another offer from another top company in india. i am confused as in, shld i join new company in india before i go for visa stamping.

    will it be a problem, or is it ok??

    Anyone in same situation??

    please suggest me!!!

    Thanks,
    Sundeep

    Reply
    • Hi, Could you please let me know thru which consultancy did you apply for h1b. Can you mail me the details to”ravi dot chat at yahoo dot co dot in”. Your help is really appreciated. Thanks a lot.

      Reply
  26. As said by everyone, on Sep 6th my case status changed to RFE from “At this time USCIS cannot provide you with information for your case. Please contact the NCSC 1 (800) 375-5283 for additional information”.

    On Aug 5th, the status was changed from IR to UNKNOWN status.

    Waiting for the reason for RFE. Fingers crossed.

    Reply
  27. Its more than a week since my petition got approved but the approval notice has not yet reached to my employer/attorney. Any idea how long does it take?

    Reply
  28. Hi All,

    My petition finally got approved on 5-Sep-13.
    The long wait is over, it was in IR since 8-Apr-2013.
    RP/EAC131395****/IT/7+ Year of Exp.

    I would like to convey many thanks to this forum, it was really helpful to clear all my doubt.
    All the best those are waiting for approval, you will get good news shortly.

    Reply
  29. My petition moved to PDA from IR today.
    RQ/RP IT with 8+ years experience .receipt no eac1314854xxx.
    All the best to the waiting guys!

    Reply
  30. My case EAC13138***** went into RFE on Sep 4 (Filing date 8 April). I have still not received notification on what the RFE is about.
    I don’t expect any problems with my qualifications since I have been granted H1 earlier on the same qualifications and similar job profile.
    However the company that has applied my H1 is fairly new so I suspect the RFE may be about that. Has anyone received RFE asking for more details about the employer?

    Reply
  31. Saurabh/Friends,
    RQ/RP got an RFE. Need all your valuble inputs for below questions to help me get through this phase.
    4 yr Engr Degree and 1.5 yrs of IT Exp
    RFE Details:
    1. Speciality Occupation
    2. Evidence pertaining to the proffered position
    3. Evidence pertaining to equivalence to completion of a college degree
    4. Evaluation of Training & Experience by college official
    5. Evidence for Recognition of Expertise
    6. USCIS Determination of Equivalency
    7. Document to Substantiate Recognition of Expertise
    8. Evidence pertaining to petitioner – In-House Employment

    Experts Please Advise.

    Thankyou All.

    Reply
    • In most of your RFEs, it will be solved by submitting Education-Experience evaluation report and a professor opinion about it. There are many organization who provide this service. Dont worry. This is common one.

      Reply
  32. Mine got approved on 28th Aug. EAC1313853***; H4->H1 CoS; RP/RQ

    I had given up the daily ritual of checking status a week back and went on a nice long vacation. Came back to see a mail, and then status regarding approval.

    Background: IIT and 3 yrs IT Dev exp., then IIM and 3 yrs IT Sales exp.

    Good luck everyone.

    Reply
  33. Hi Saurab and All,
    I got RFE for emp-emp relationship on last week, my employer said he is working on it.
    My ques are , how much possibility on rejection on this ? Also evev we submit the answers in 2 weeks time getting decesion on oct is very difficult in my view.. till what time frame they can process or any approx timeframe in your exp ?

    Reply
  34. Hi:
    I need some info about H1B transfer. My petition is approved and hoping for the H1B visa too to come through successfully. I am supposed to join my employer lets say A who filed my petition this year on 1st Oct. 13. Now, suppose i want to change the employer lets say from A to B before I reach US on 1st Oct. ’13. Is this possible? What is the procedure for this?How long the transfer will take? Will there be anyissue with Employer A. Since I am yet to join them i think its quite possible to change the employer right at the start of the employment in US. Not too sure. Please suggest.
    Regards, Mas

    Reply
    • Mine is also in similar situation, only difference is mine is with L1 to H1 CoS.
      Question is, is that legal to transfer H1 to another employer (say employer B) before even joining the employer (say employer A) thru whom my H1 is applied & approved.
      Also, i haven’t got the approval notice/copy yet from the employer A. Is it possible to transfer H1 to employer B without the approval notice?
      Any suggestions?

      Thanks!

      Reply
  35. Finally, After a long wait and many hiccups, got the APPROVAL!!!!!
    Case History:
    Received date : April 8, 2013
    Notice date : April 22, 2013
    RFE date : July 17, 2013
    RFE about : Employee- Employer relation
    RFE Response date : August 21, 2013
    Approved date : September 3, 2013

    Receipt Number – Wac-13-138-53XXX

    Field – IT

    Processing – Regular

    Quota – Regular (Not advanced degree)

    Thanks to one and all and hope everyone will get their approvals.

    Reply
  36. We applied for COS L1-H1 along with L2-H4 for my dependent as our L1 & L2 + I94 expiring on 05 Oct 2013. Good news is that H1 got approved with COS ; but L2-H4 case is still in IR state since 10-Jul.
    1. How long it will take L2-H4 approval done.
    2. Is any possibility that L2-H4 get denied even though L1-H1 approved.
    3. Are the dependent cases not linked to primary applicant.
    4. Do we need to apply for L2 extension if no update on COS L2-H4 till 01-Oct.
    5. Do we need to apply for L1 extension as well or its just L2 extension.

    Reply
  37. I am having visa valid till 12Sept 2013 but not utilized ever. Now my employer getting amendment and it is approved now on 28th Aug 2013 but petition docs not recieved yet. So if I get on 10th Sept so can i travel on 12th as valid visa is upto 13th sept?
    And if I get docs after 13th Sept then I can travel withoput visa stamp based on new petition docs or should I for visa stamping again ?

    Reply
  38. My H1B got approved on Friday.
    Regular Quota / Regular Processing / EAC13146509*.
    All the best for everyone those who are still waiting.

    Reply

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