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H1B Transfer Process – Requirements, Documents, Timelines, Cost, FAQs

It is a one of the most common questions for H1B workers that “Can I transfer my H1B visa to another company?”. This question can arrive after working for a company for several years, or just after landing in US, or even before flying to US. As part of this article, we will look at various scenarios, look at overall process, documents required, understand the cost, timelines, and common FAQs.

What is H1B Visa Transfer ?

First of all, there is no official term that is called as “H1B transfer”. It is a term coined for our convenience. The official option that corresponds to the H1B transfer is is called “Change of Employer”. It is selected on I-129 Form, which is filed with USCIS when you file a H1B transfer petition. See below Screenshot.

H1B Visa Transfer - Option to Select in I-129 Form

H1B transfer process is nothing but filing a new H1B visa petition with USCIS that is done using the above “Change Employer” option, but that does not have through go through the H1B Registration process or H1B Visa lottery, because the applicant has already been counted in the H1B visa quota cap. There is nothing really transferred from your old employer to new employer or even your visa related stuff. You are only using the previous employer’s approval notice to file it as cap exempt petition.

H1B Visa Transfer Eligibility Scenarios

Depending on where the H1B applicant is during the time of H1B transfer process, USCIS would look at various requirements related to the applicant, including the visa status of the individual. Below are the various common scenarios :

  • H1B Transfer Applicant Outside of US, never visited US.
  • H1B Transfer after entering US in short time
  • H1B Transfer after working in US, applicant in US
  • H1B Transfer after working in US, applicant outside of US
  • H1B Transfer with I-140 Approved

USCIS looks at the H1B transfer applicant’s status and verifies, if the applicant has maintained proper status in US, in order to approve the petition. Now, let us look at the above listed four scenarios in context of applicant’s ‘status’ in US.  It is important to understand this because, applicants have to provide relevant documents like Pay Stubs, Tax Documents, etc for H1B transfer to prove that they were in status at the time of filing. You may read article US Visa vs Status to understand the difference.

H1B Transfer Applicant Outside of US, never visited US

Usually, this situation arrives, when you are living outside of US and a Company applies for your H1B Petition and gets it approved. For some reason your old employer is not able to get you to US, you want to transfer to other company. In some situations, you may even have H1B visa stamped in passport using old employer.

USCIS usually looks at two aspects, one is applicant’s current status and second is cap exempt situation.

  • Applicant Status : The concept of status is not relevant as the applicant is outside of US and will not have status, so you as applicant do not have to prove status. So, there is no need to submit I-94 Arrival Departure Card or any relevant documentation to say that you were in status.
  • Cap Exempt Qualification : The second part is cap exempt situation….This is the tricky part, in the past USCIS used to consider a petition as cap exempt, if you had H1B approved from employer. But, in the recent years, it has become more grey area. USCIS at times questions, if the applicant had H1B status at any point of time. Usually, you would get H1B status, if you work on H1B Visa or you got H1B stamped. So, if you had H1B stamped, you technically had H1B status and you maybe eligible for cap exempt transfer…but, if you did not get stamping, then you never had status, so you do not qualify for cap exempt. This is slightly grey area and some users also shared that they were able to get H1B transfer done, without having stamping…So, you may try, if you have an employer willing to take chance…But, usually, if you have H1B stamping done, then you have better approval chances.

H1B Transfer after entering US in short time

Usually, this situation arises when the H1B holder after arriving in US, realizes that the employer is not the right fit or they have a better offer from another employer and they want to transfer immediately. Usually, if someone want to transfer within 15 days or less. Similar to above, USCIS would look at applicant’s current status and cap exempt situation.

  • Applicant Status : As the H1B transfer applicant has arrived in US, they have a status, which is H1B given to them at port of entry in a Stamp and I-94 reflects the status as well. The applicant has to prove status, but there is no additional information, except I-94 and copy of Stamp on passport that they need to submit to prove status. They do not have to submit pay stubs or other tax documents to prove that they maintained status. This is because the duration is less than 15 days and most employers do not run payroll before 15 days.
  • Cap Exempt Qualification : The applicant is cap exempt as they have both H1B stamping and entered inside US on H1B visa status.

In the above situation, as the applicant meets both of these, they can do H1B transfer to a new employer, if someone is willing to file a new H1B petition on their behalf. They do not have to exit the country, they can do H1B transfer within US.

H1B Transfer after working in US, applicant in US

This is the most common scenarios of the three as many are in US on H1B Visa working for a company and they get a better offer outside and they plan to move. Similar to above situation, USCIS looks at Status and Cap exempt situation for transfer.

  • Applicant Status : As the H1B transfer applicant is working in US for sometime, they need to submit additional documents like pay stubs, Tax returns from previous employers, including approval notice to prove that they maintained proper status all along. If an applicant does not submit most recent pay stubs or tax documents, ( if over year), USCIS may question the transfer and they may not approve the H1B Transfer with I-94. In such cases, employee has to leave US and get stamping done at consulate, re-enter US to work for the new employer.
  • Cap Exempt Qualification : The applicant is cap exempt as they worked on H1B before. So, this is implicit and applicant need to put in approval notice of previous employer.

H1B Transfer after working in US, applicant outside of US

This situation arises, when someone left US after few years of working on H1B, for whatever reason, and plan to come back to US as they haven not used all 6 years. In general, you can Recapture un-used H1B Time. Now, even in this situation, USCIS typically looks at Status and Cap exempt situation for transfer.

  • Applicant Status : As the H1B transfer applicant is not in US, the concept of status is not relevant, so applicant does not have to prove status.
  • Cap Exempt Qualification : The applicant is considered cap exempt as they worked in US on H1B before and had H1B status at least once. Usually, applicant need to put in copy of approval notice of previous employer. Optionally, applicant may even submit payslips from his previous H1B employer, Bank statements, W2 tax forms,  in order to prove that legal status was maintained while the applicant was in US. No proof is required for the period for the time spent in India. You can even submit your I-94 Travel History

So, applicant can transfer as long as they worked in the past and not used up all 6 years.

H1B Transfer with I-140 Approved

One more common situation is when someone has I-140 Approved. Usually I-140 is applied as part of Green Card process steps, where you wait for the priority date to become current. In context of H1B transfers, you can continue to work in US after 6 years on H1B, if you have I-140 approved and it also applies for H1B Transfers too. If you have I-140 approved for over 180 days and not withdrawn, you can use it to apply for H1B transfer as long as you want without any time limit of 6 years. To avail this option, USCIS looks at the below

  • Applicant Status : If the applicant is isn US, they need to submit the status related documents like I-94, Current Pay stubs, tax documents, etc.. If the applicant is not in US, then it is not relevant.
  • Cap Exempt Qualification: As the applicant of H1B transfer has used all 6 years, they need to prove that they have green card process going on and I-140 is approved. So, you need to submit a copy of the I-140 along with the H1B transfer. If your employer has not shared, you can get it using FOIA request with USCIS.

Now that we know the eligibility for H1B transfer, let’s look at the process involved.

What is H1B Visa Transfer Process ?

H1B Visa Transfer process is exactly same as filing a fresh H1B petition with a new employer. The fundamental difference is that with H1B transfer, the applicant does not have to go through H1B Registration Lottery to be counted for cap. The reason is that H1B applicant was already counted towards cap and has not used up all 6 years or either cap exempt using I-140 approval. Also, with H1B transfer, you do not have to wait until march or April of next year, when H1B season starts, to file H1B petition.  Below are the typical process steps on a high level for H1B transfer. We will look at additional details for each of these after these steps.

  • Step 1 : Find Job at H1B Sponsoring Employer : You need to get a job at a H1B sponsoring employer. Once you have the job offer, you need to work with their attorney and indicate that you already went through the H1B cap process and eligible for cap exempt petition filing as H1B transfer.
  • Step 2 : Submit all H1B transfer Documents :  You need to provide all the required H1B transfer documents to your new employer to start the H1B transfer process. The complete list of documents is listed below in separate section.
  • Step 3 :  H1B Sponsoring Employer / Attorney Files LCA with DOL : Once you send all documents, your new employer or their designated attorney will file Labor Condition Application(LCA) with US Department of Labor (DOL).  LCA has the job offered, salary offered, prevailing wage and other info. For more info, read What is H1B LCA, why file it, info in it. 
  • Step 4 : File H1B Transfer Petition with USCIS : After the LCA is approved by US DOL, your new employer will file H1B transfer petition with USCIS. Basically, they will file form I-129 with USCIS with all the relevant fee, supporting documents regarding the offered job, etc.
  • Step 5 : USCIS gives Receipt Notice and Adjudicates : Once the H1B transfer Petition is received by USCIS, they will issue receipt notice to employer/ attorney indicating that they have received the H1B petition and for tracking purposes. Depending on the load of the Service Center and filing type either regular or premium processing, the H1B transfer petition is adjudicated by USCIS in few days to few months.
  • Step 6 : USCIS Approval, RFE   : USCIS either gives approval decision or requests for additional information as RFE, depending on the case and makes a decision of either approval or denial based on the overall petition. 
  • Step 7 : Employee or Applicant Decision : Once the H1B transfer approval is through, now it is up to the employee or applicant to make the decision to join the company. Unless, it is a Change of Status petition, the applicant has choice to either join or continue with previous employer…

Let’s look at the documents check list now.

H1B Transfer Documents, Checklist

The H1B transfer documents are pretty much same as regular H1B petition, but additional details like current status in US and previous H1B details has to be submitted. Below is the complete list. Some of these are optional or may not be relevant for the applicant, if they are in their home country and have never traveled to US.

  • Copy of Job offer letter from New employer, with details of the Job title, Salary offered and signed by both applicant and employer.
  • Resume of applicant.
  • Copy of Passport
  • Copy of I-94 ( if already in US)
  • Copy of H1B Stamp on passport ( if already in US or have done stamping)
  • Copy of Previous approved H1B petition ( I-797 approval notice)
  • Copy of SSN ( if already in US and worked before)
  • Copy of 3 or more most recent Pay stubs/ pay slips ( if already in US )
  • Copy of W2 Tax forms from employer ( if already in US and filed taxes)
  • Copy of Bachelors/ Masters Degrees or any higher education.
  • Education related University Transcripts in sealed cover.
  • I-140 Approval copy ( if applicable)
  • Academic Evaluation (depending on country, degree and university awarded it, there may be need for education evaluation and submit that as well, check with your attorney )
  • Copies of experience letters, if any from your previous employers
  • Any other letters of recommendation ( if any – optional)

H1B Visa Transfer Fees, Cost

The H1B transfer cost for employer includes application fees that are paid to USCIS and other fee such as attorney fee. Depending on the size of the company, the H1B filing fee can vary anywhere from $1,700 USD to $7,900 USD + the attorney fee( if any).

H1B Transfer Fee ComponentFee in USDAdditional Details
 Base filing fee for I-129$460 Standard fee for every H1B petition
(American Competitiveness and Workforce Improvement Act of 1998)



 $750 – for employers with 1 to 25 full time employees )


$1500 – for employers with 26 or    more full time equivalent employee )

Fraud prevent & detection fee$500Needed as there is change of employers
Fee based on Public Law 114-113$4000Applicable, if 50 or more employees and more than 50% of employees are on H1B or L1 Visa status, required for new H1B filing and change of employers.
Read H1B fee increase $4000 rule to check if it applies to your case
Premium processing fee (Optional)$1,440 Applicable only if H1B Transfer petition is filed under premium processing.
Immigration Attorney FeeVaries from $500 to $3000 Varies by attorney and can be anywhere from $500 to $3000. If the employer has in-house immigration team, this may not be an expense

H1B Visa Transfer Process Time

H1B transfer includes many steps from filing LCA, to working with attorney and processing by USCIS. Each of these have their own processing time, so you need to factor in time for all of these below.

  • LCA Processing time : As part of the H1B transfer, employer has to get a New Labor Condition Application (LCA) for the job role at the location of employment. Getting LCA with US Dept of Labor can take anywhere from few days to 7 business days, it is online and is quite fast.
  • Attorney or Employe Processing time to Submit Petition :Depending on the complexity of the petition, both employer and applicant require time to gather documents needed for H1B transfer petition. It can vary from few days to couple of weeks or more depending on speed to get documents like transcripts, education evaluation, etc. You need to factor in at least couple of weeks or more for this step.
  • USCIS Processing time for H1B petition : After the petition is ready and submitted to USCIS, the processing time with USCIS for H1B transfer petition can range from few weeks to few months or sometimes many months. There is no required SLA for H1B transfer petitions filed under regular processing and USCIS can take their own time based on load. It is recommended to file it under Premium processing, if you plan to work soon for new employer after H1B transfer. If you file in premium processing, you will get response in 15 calendar days. Check USCIS Premium Processing

Overall, you can expect anywhere from few weeks to few months, depending on if you choose premium or regular processing.

H1B Transfer FAQs

When can you start working for New Employer with H1B Transfer ?

You can work for New H1B Employer after USCIS receives the H1B transfer petition and issues Receipt Notice ( I797C Notice of Receipt). This working provision with USCIS receipt notice is as per AC21 regulation.  Unless really needed, it is recommended that you get H1B approval notice, before you start working to avoid any issues with transfer.

Do you need permission from current Employer for H1B Transfer ?

No, you do not need permission of your current employer to file H1B transfer by a new employer.  Any H1B Sponsor can file H1B transfer petition, which is basically a new H1B petition based on your current approval notice, on your behalf without any permission from your current employer.

Do I need to inform my current employer on my H1B transfer process ?

No, you do not have to inform your current employer that you have applied for H1B transfer. Having said that you are still governed by your employer contracts for the notice period and other obligations that you need to fulfil, when you leave the employer. So, plan the start date at new employer and other things factoring in these things.

Can I do H1B Transfer from Cap Exempt Employer to Cap Subject Employer ?

No, you cannot do H1B transfer from Cap exempt employer like University or non-profit research institution to a cap subject employer like general MNC companies. You will need go through standard H1B registration and lottery process, if you wish to do so.

Any limits on number of H1B Transfer Petitions that can be applied ?

No, there are no limits. You can have multiple employers apply for H1B transfer on behalf of you at the same time. In general, many work full time for one H1B employer. But, you may work for multiple employers simultaneously, if working part time. This is called concurrent H1B and you need to apply for the same to work for more than on employer.

Any limit on number of times to apply for H1B transfer in a Year or Month ?

No, there are no such limits, you can apply for H1B transfer as many times as you want in a month or year.

H1B Visa stamp on passport is expiring, can I do H1B Transfer ?

Your H1B visa stamp dates are not fully relevant for H1B transfer. You are eligible for H1B transfer, if you were counted in cap once and have not used up all 6 years of time. Also, you are eligible for transfer, if you have an approved I-140 petition.

What has been your experience with H1B Transfer ? Share your thoughts in comments.


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  1. Hello –

    I’ve my i-140 approved but as always employer is not willing to share i797 approval notice(for i140).

    From FOIA I’ve got i-140 petition approval. USCIS is also not maintaining i-797 approval copies for i-140 approval.

    Is petition approval is enough for changing employer and transferring h1b ?

    Also , where I can find my i140 number ?

  2. Hello
    One employer from US has interviewed me and processed my H1B last year and it got picked and now i have approved petition with US stamping.

    Now, after asking my current employer for whom am working now in India , agreed to transfer me to US in current working company.

    Question is
    1. Do I need to get my passport re stamped after my petition get transferred.

    2. If by any chance my petition doesn’t get approved with my current employer then will my previous petition will still be valid?

    Thanks in advance 🙏

  3. Hi,

    I am living in India with H1B from my India Employer. I have got two direct offers from USA. One I got one month back with Employer X, Employer X went ahead and got my H1B petition transfer petition approved on 15-Mar-2022. While Employer X was filing for H1B transfer they asked me for approved I-797B and I-129 from India employer.

    Now I have got an offer from Employer Y that offers me better package and opportunity. and I am more interested in joining them, will Employer Y now need approved I-797B and I-129 from both companies i.e. India Employer and Employer X in order to have H1b transferred? Please suggest. Thanks.

    • Rohit,
      They do not need both of them. Also, did you work in US before or got Stamping before in India ? Just want to understand your situation better.

      • Hi Kumar,

        Thanks for replying. I never worked in USA. I am currently in India. and my India employer applied for my H1B in 2019 which was picked up in lottery and I then got my passport stamped with H1B visa. but I could never travel from India employer to USA.
        So I was just trying for job from India directly in USA. I got two direct offers from USA. As a result I have got H1B petition approved for USA employer A but USA employer B released my offer two days back which is better than employer A.
        So for Employer B, will I-797 and 129 from India employer be enough for getting my petition approved?


        • Hi Kumar,

          Can you please advise me on my above queries. I am awaiting your piece of advice so that I can act accordingly for my employer B.

          Thank You.

  4. Hi Kumar,

    I am currently working on H1B with current Employer A and I have I40 approved soft copy with me (180 period is done).
    My H1B VISA extension was applied and was approved two months back , but USCIS did not send the receipt, we filed I-824 for Duplicate copy.
    My previous H1B visa and I-94 are expired.
    I have an offer with Employer B which i am very interested in taking up.
    Q 1 : Can we initiate H1B transfer without the approved i-797 copy of latest extension and latest i-94 which should have come along with i-797A copy ?
    Q 2 : If yes what are the process and additional things that needs to be done ?
    Q 3 : If No , then is there a way i can obtain the I797 copy from USCIS as they do not respond to beneficiary.

    Thanks & Regards

  5. First of I would like to express my appreciation and gratitude for all the authors of this blog who are helping visa holders and immigrants like me with relevant information, answering questions, and providing clarification around the visa and immigration process making our lives easier. I can not thank you all enough.
    With that said I am here with a question –

    I had my i140 approved with my first employer. I changed that employer a year ago. My i140 process hasn’t been started with the current employer yet, however, now I am willing to join a third company. Can I still use my approved i140 from my first employer for the subsequent H1B transfers? Please help.

  6. I am currently working in US with Employer A on L1B that is valid and stamped till Feb,2023.
    I got H1B approved from another Employer B under Counselor Processing.
    I am planning to visit India for vacation while I am still working on L1B with Employer A in US.
    During my vacation to India planning to get H1B stamped for employer B.
    I am curious to know if the Counselor can/will cancel my L1B with employer A, while issuing the H1B for employer B , just because of the reason I am already working on L1B.

    Any help would be highly appreciated!

  7. Hi Kumar,

    My H1B got picked this year but my passport is not stamped yet and planing to leave the current company and joining new company in India.

    Will still I can transfer my visa to my new company?

  8. Hi Kumar,
    Have a question regarding H1 transfer. I have joining date with Employer B in next 2 weeks and H1 transfer is in progress. I am currently with Employer A, haven’t given notice yet. I am waiting for H1 approval and then provide notice to Employer A. I may end up having a couple of days of overlap. If it happens so, being in H1 can someone work for 2 employers at the same time for a couple of days? If not, what would be the best choice here ?

  9. I am in Scenario 4 of h1b transfer. I moved to India 6 months back and left with 2yrs cap. Recently got extension approved with Company A. I am willing to join Company B with change in designation. My question is ‘Do I hv to get stamping with Company A approval notice’ or should I do H1b transfer and wait for decision then go for stamping.

  10. Hi,
    My current employer has filed for H1B extension, its valid till Aug 2021. I want to transfer my H1b to a new employer. My current employer is not sharing the extension receipt number for some BS reason. Can the new employer file for change of employer I-129 petition w/o my latest H1b extension receipt number?
    I have an approved I-140 so should they add that receipt number in the “Provide the most recent receipt number” field and in the comments section somewhere add the H1b extension details? Or will this cause a RFE in transfer ship?

  11. First of all thanks for such an informative article Kumar, Can I redact the paystub? if yes what information should it have and what should be removed this is related to H1 Transfer docment check list.

    • Kumar,
      Well, it should not be redacted. it should clearly say whos is it paid and how much and company name, etc. Modifying it can create doubts…

  12. Hello Expert,

    One employer from US has interviewed me and processed my H1B lotter this year and it got picked and now H1B employer is proceeding to file H1B petition (I don’t know what is it called I797 or something).
    Now, my current employer for whom am working now, said that they want me to transfer to US in current working company.
    NOTE that I never visited US.
    Now, is there any possibility to use the H1B which got picked this year?
    If yes, when is the right time to apply for transfer?

    • Mrudhula,
      You cannot transfer without approval or having the status. So, they cannot use that yet. But, in the future, they maybe able to do that, if you get stamping with the company that filed H1B for you now.

  13. Hi,
    I’ve recently cleared an interview with a consultant . I’ve provided him my i797 approval copy before the interview. After the interview is cleared, I’m not willing with him any more as his offer letter has lot of clauses with resignation.
    I’m now wondering/afraid, if the consultant be able initiate my transfer with approval copy I shared earlier without my consent, or misuse it?
    Thanks in advance.

    • Ravi,
      Even, if they transfer, it is your will to join. So, dont worry about that. As long as you dont leave your current company, you are fine.

  14. Hello,

    I recently changed my job and did my h1b transfer. My new employer got rfe on my transfer. I wanted to know if my older employer’s h1b is still valid and I can go work with them again if something goes wrong with my new employer?

    Thank you

  15. Hello,
    I am working for employer A and the visa expires in 6 months, without extension, I am sponsored by employer B and want to start working for employer b once it’s approved. Employer A doesn’t want to terminate my h-1b and want to wait to keep it valid till it gets expired and put me on non paid leave, will it be a problem if I move to employer B and start working if the employer a keeps my h-1b valid till it expires.
    Please help

  16. Hello,

    My situation is the following:

    I came to U.S. on L1 via Employer A, and now I have received my H1-B approval via same employer. After receiving my approval, I have not yet travelled outside the US and has not got H1-B Stamped on my passport.

    So, If I change my employer to EmployerB before getting my passport stamped, Can Employer B still file for H1-B transfer using cap-exempt ? As Employer A would be filing for withdrawal upon my departure.

    Can I transfer employer on approved but non-stamped H1-B without going through the lottery again?


    • Dgil,
      If you are curretly on H1B status, you are fine to file the transfer. The trick is you currenlty being on H1B status. Yes, it is possible. The trick is you haveing H1B status at least once.

      • Hello Kumar,

        Thanks a lot for your comments.

        So, If I understand you correctly, once I am working on H1-B status (without H1-B stamped on my passport), I can change my employers without being cap-subject (without have to re-enter the lottery) even after my original employer revoked the original H1-B petition.

        Is that correct?


    • Hello Kumar,

      I have come to US few months back and have one clause in employment agreement that if I leave my employer before a year, I have to pay a certain amount to them as they call it hiring and training cost.

      1) I know, I had signed and accepted the employment agreement before moving to US, but still I want to know the possibility, if I chose to leave my employer before one year completion, do I have to payback that amount legally? Is it legal in US for an employer to claim such amount as bond for one year in name of hiring and training cost?

      2) if I choose not to pay the amount for leaving before completion of a year as per agreement, can they cause a legal issue or an issue in H1 transfer to next employer in any way?

      Please suggest on this as this is a factor to accept or reject the offer from new employer.

  17. Hello. Thanks for sharing the information.
    I am currently on an H1B and in the US with my existing employer. I recently interviewed for a job with a different company and have cleared all of them. The new company is unable to make me an offer because they are still waiting for a ‘prevailing wage level determination’. It has been 1.5 months and they still have not got the determination from their Visa consultants. IThe FLAG websites says that wage determinations from July are being processed right now in december – and at this pace itll be another 3 months before this gets done
    Why do they need a prevailing wage determination at all?
    If they do, why can they not just go the the FLCD datacenter and get the prevailing wage information themselves?
    Are there other ways that they could get prevailing wage information to get the LCA process kicked off?

  18. I have recently applied for Change of Employer and I have the following question.
    -On Nov 19 2020 I was laid off at my current employer.
    – I already had a job on hand so I have informed the new employer to file for H1B transfer.
    – For submitting the pay stubs part , I have 1 month old pay stubs , Filing date – Nov 20 , 2020
    Last pay stub I have Oct 15, I have submitted 3 pay stubs [Oct 15 and before that], Will this have an effect on y transfer ?

  19. Hi ,

    I have recently applied for Change of Employer and I have the following question.
    -On Nov 19 2020 I was laid off at my current employer.
    – I already had a job on hand so I have informed the new employer to file for H1B transfer.
    – For submitting the pay stubs part , I have 1 month old pay stubs , Filing date – Nov 20 , 2020
    Last pay stub I have Oct 15, I have submitted 3 pay stubs [Oct 15 and before that], Will this have an effect on y transfer ?

  20. Hi ,

    Thanks for the information, this is really helpful.
    I have recently applied for Change of Employer and I have the following question.
    -On Nov 19 2020 I was laid off at my current employer.
    – I already had a job on hand so I have informed the new employer to file for H1B transfer.
    – For submitting the pay stubs part , I have 1 month old pay stubs , Filing date – Nov 20 , 2020
    Last pay stub I have Oct 15, I have submitted 3 pay stubs [Oct 15 and before that], Will this have an effect on y transfer ?

  21. Hi Kumar,

    I recently arrived to USA on H1 visa last month, and having difficulties to get the appointment with SSA office for getting my SSN (The appointment is must in pandemic to apply for SSN and without it in person visit is not allowed).

    Due to delays the SSN has been generated on 4th November but still has not been delivered to mailing address and SSA office is not allowing in person visit due to pandemic to let me know the number and also is not sending any confirmation letter. They say I have to wait for the mail to be delivered and that is only when I can get my SSN.

    Meanwhile Employer is not onboarding me without SSN .

    1) will I get out of status if I don’t receive the SSN mailed to me untill it completes 2 months since I entred to US?

    2) what alternative are there when my SSN has been issued but I can not know the number till the mail is delivered.

    3) I understand there could be many cases like my situation but what if I lose my job due to SSN delay, Who is responsible for such administration delays?

    Please suggest what alternatives do I am left with?

    • Piyush,
      1. well, this is slightly tricky. they need to on-board you and give you status. You can technically be on-boarded without SSN and start working. Read Official SSN Office Guide
      See, if there are any other alternatives…Talk to your attorney.
      2. Frankly, not seen such situation, do not know. Try to reach out to SSA office again and see, if any choices.
      3. Well, you should not lose your job because of this. You can technically start working, just will need to update it later. Check with your employer or a qualified attorney. There must be some option.

      Also, read article Can you start working without SSN in US on H1B

      Do update after you speak to attorney for community benefit.

  22. Hi,

    I have initiated a transfer to employer B and C. Both the transfers are approved. Now employer B is saying it will be illegal if you are working for employer A or else they have to reinitiate a transfer in this case. Please provide me your valuable suggestions

    • Swati,
      No, it is false information. You are free to apply for transfer, while you are working for any company. That’s how everyone does it.

  23. Thank you for the wonderful info you’ve posted here. it’s really helpful for many. I have few questions regarding my situation.

    I have i140 approved, but I came back to India in 2019 and my H1B was expired in Dec 2019. I applied for extension with same employer A & it was approved but stamping was cancelled because of Covid-19 situation in India (consulates cancelled the dates). Now I will be moving to new employer B who agreed to transfer my H1B.

    a) Do I need to collect the I797A from employer A & give it to employer B for transfer process?
    b) Can employer B start the perm & GC process from India for me?
    c) What if employer A doesn’t want to share the recent H1B approved I797 copy.

    Please advise.

  24. Hi
    Currently I am in India working for employer A (in India payroll). I was in US in H1B (sponsored by employer A ) and completed 6 years (including the time recaptured that I spent outside USA) working for employer A , returned to India on Nov 2018 (bcoz my PERM was just filed at that time)and have been in India payroll of employer A till now. PERM was filed by employer A when I was in US (in Oct 2018). So I could not extend my H1B visa at that time. Being in India, with employer A (India payroll) my PERM got approved in Feb 2019 and I-140 was filed with Premium processing by employer A. I-140 got approved in April 2019. After that employer A is not showing me interest to extend my H1B visa based on the approved I-140. I waited for 6 months and then COVID pandemic started. So its been 1 year and 5 months since my I-140 got approved. what are my options? Being in India, without status (used all 6 years with H1B), Can I change the employer now with approved I-140 with employer A or I need to first get my H1B extn filed by employer A, get it approved and then change the employer? If its possible for the new employer to file H1B transfer, will it be CAP exempt?

  25. Hi Kumar,

    My current scenario is I have a H1B extension done recently by my previous employer and received approval notice (September 2020 to Sept 2023). This extension is after 6 year maxout under AC21 with additional 3 years. I have approved I140 but I485 process was not filed by my previous company. I got laid off on September 15 2020. I was able to get a job and new company decided to file H1B transfer for me.
    1. Can I start working in the new company as soon as H1B transfer is filed? or should I have to wait until I receive the receipt or notice? I believe I have 60 days from Sep 15, 2020.
    2. How long does it take for H1B transfer to be approved? should I mention to my new company to do premium processing?
    3. What are my alternatives if I have issues with transfer to remain in US and not be under violation?
    4. What will happen to my GC processing, will the new company have to file all over again? since the company policy is they can initiate GC processing only after one year of completion. Will I be having any issues with H1B extensions later on, with approved I140 as the wait time for India is longer? and gc processing is it an ideal situation doing it after one year of working with the company?

    • One additional question as well

      My I94 expired on September 6, 2020. once I get the H1B transfer approval. Can I visit India and get a visa stamping done without issues. Or travel to India is not advised?

      Please guide me with my queries.

      Thanks in advance!

  26. Hi,

    I have moved to India on Aug2017 from USA and My visa and I797 expired Sep2017, I have approved I140 with same employer, Now I am with another employer ,Now Can I transfer my H1B Visa from previous employer to my current employer.
    Is it Valid to transfer?
    I Was in USA 2.6 years only.
    I have moved to India 3 years completed .

    Could you please advise.

    Thank You,

  27. Hi ,
    I got laid off by A company on April 2020 first week, and have applied for H1-B transfer through a staffing company on June 2020. I am working through the staffing company on a project but it isn’t going to last for a while. My H1-B transfer is still pending, can I start interviewing for full time employment or wait for the transfer to come through?
    It’s been 3 months since the receipt notice. Also, can I apply for new transfer just based on this receipt notice?

    • Darshan,
      You should apply for premium processing and get the decision soon. Yes, you would need the approval to move, especially, if your I-94 has expired.
      Yes, you can, but it all depends on I-94 validity and your status. Best thing is to upgrade to premium and get approval, then file for transfer.. Talk to your attorney.

  28. My Employer filed H1 B petition this year and my Form I-129 has been approved. I am serving notice period, so how I can get it transferred to new employer.

  29. I am in the US. My H1B visa stamp has expired. My i94 and i797 are valid till Dec-2021. Can a new employer file an H1B COE for me without me? Can I change status without having to leave country/get a new visa stamp.

  30. Hi Kumar,

    I currently work at company A and company B filed H1b transfer and it got approved. I decided not to join company B, do I still need that paper I-797 approval notice (they don’t want to send it to me)? Or are there any scenarios that I might use it in the future?


  31. I have H1b approval until 2023. Already approved for i-140. I got a job from a new company and they are going to apply for transfer(premium) in few days. Here are my questions

    1. My wife’s H4/H4 EAD is in progress. Due to lockdown biometrics not taken and waiting for an update. Now if I apply for H1 transfer, What will happen to the H4/H4 EAD processing? Will I get RFE and ask for a new i797?

    2. My company has 2 weeks’ notice. Can I inform my current employer and server 2 weeks notice period after I got i797 approval from a new company? Does that mean I will have to work for my current company for 2 weeks and then move to a new company? is that okay? or we need to join a new company immediately after approval? Any specific time period restrictions here?

    3. Do I need to also transfer H4? What will happen to existing pending process? Will that get canceled once the new transfer applied

    4. Do i need to inform my current employer to not withdraw my current h1b? What is the advantage here?

    Thanks in Advance…

    • Kris,
      1. it should be processed without any issues. They may issue an RFE at the worst case and you can submit h1b approval.
      2. Yes, that is fine. No need to join immediately, unless it is a COS
      3. You can do it again, if you want to keep the dates in sync for yours and your spouse documents. But, not need, if they are valid.
      4. If you have approval from the company you are planning to transfer, there is no need to ask them to wait. No advantage as such.

  32. Hi Kumar,

    I hope you are doing well and safe.

    I got my first time H1B stamped on Feb 2020 and it is valid till Sept 2022. Because of this pandemic situation, my client stopped the project. And I know my company doesn’t have any potential project to put me in the USA.

    What are the options I have here?

    1. Can I look for another employee who have job opening in the USA?
    2. I already have my H1B stamped in my passport, is there any chance that my current employer can do anything against my stamped H1B if they smell that I am looking for other opportunities?
    3. What if USCIS rejected my transfer request? In that case, my current H1B status that I have with my current employer will get void or it will be still active till Sept 2022?

    Thanks in advance,

    • Joseph,
      1. Yes, you can do. Look for options when you are in job.
      2. No, they cannot revoke anything.
      3. If they do not withdraw, it may be in dormant state and you maybe able to activate it. But, very tricky though….Talk to attorney on this.

  33. Hi Kumar,
    My situation is… I am on h1 and have approved i140 and stamping valid till 2022.
    I came to India in Feb 2020 for some family emergency and stayed here for 2/3 month and in the meantime, my projected ended and my employer moved me to Indian payroll and they told they will get back to the USA once have project say (6 months to one year).
    Can I find an employer in India/From USA, who can apply for transfer of my visa, and in case they agree, will I get i797A with valid i94 or do I need to go again stamping with a new employer? and if am outside USA, then visa transfer is always consular processing?
    is it legal to enter with my old visa stamped and with new employer i797 and show new i797 in Port of entry to get into USA, please suggest?

  34. Hi Kumar,

    I currently work on H1B with Company A (profit).
    Company B, which is a non-profit, filed for my transfer which was received on 06/11 but I terminate my offer on 06/26 after they require me to go to work with only receipt (consider current situation, I want to wait to approval). So I’m still in Company A til now with Paycheck to today, and reject the offer from Company B already, more than one week ago.

    Then I received an offer from Company C (profit) . Now I’m preparing documents for Company C . I have A’s approved I-797A. My case with Company B is still “received” status and I have request Company B’s lawyer to withdraw my H1B transfer with them, I think they should have done it after I terminate my offer. However, for Company C, what kinda of documents should I prepare to them? Do I need give them my receipt (I-797C) from Company B, do I need to tell them I have a pending H1B transfer, which should be invalid if Company B lawyer has withdrawn it? Will my Company C’s h1b transfer case’s decision be influenced by Company B’s h1b transfer case? Thanks a lot for your help!


    • Alice,
      As long as you are still working with A and in status with proper I-94, other things you do with B does not matter.
      For C, you just need to give current A company documents and your proofs of status. You do not have to tell about B. It will not have any influence.

  35. Hi Kumar,
    I currently work on H1B with Company A. Company B filed for my transfer which was approved on 05/27 and in that my I-94 got extended to 2023(previously it was valid till 2022). But I decided to not join Company B since I received better offer from Company C .Now Company C filed for H1B transfer today 07/02 and I didn’t inform them about my approved H1B transfer from company B so the I-94 expiry date was filed as 2022 since that is what will come up when I get my I-94 record online. Should I have informed them about the I-94 extension I received due to transfer petition from Company B or does that not matter?

  36. Hi Kumar,

    I am working on H-1B. Due to covid-19, I was laid off from company A on 3/20 and due to 60 day limit, I started with a staffing company B on 5/15 just to save myself from getting kicked out of US. It’s H-1B visa transfer is still in process (not approved yet).

    Today, I got a full-time offer from Company C. For H-1B visa transfer, should I give them the receipt number of company B’s case or do I need to provide them with receipt number of my last approved case with company A or do I need to provide both the receipts? Anything else other than the regular documents I should provide to company C?

    • Arjun,
      You should give both B’s receipt and A’s previous approval as well. You should provide your offer letter, pay slips, etc to make sure you are maintaining status. You need to indicate your layoff as well so that attorney plans for the same with C. Be clear in the beginning than hiding and getting into issues later.

    • Hi Kumar,

      I was working with company A in OPT for. an F-1 visa. In October I got my H1B approved and I then travel in February to get my stamp. This all got delay for the coronavirus and couple of months later my visa got approved but I have not been able to return to the USA because of the travel bans due to coronavirus. During all this time I am still employed by company A but I am not receiving income, since I am not allow to work remotely. Now I have a job offer from a company B that is willing to sponsor me and allow remote working. My question is, can I still do a H1B transfer if:
      1) I am currently abroad
      2) I got my h1b stamp but I haven’t reenter the usa after that
      3) I am employee but don’t have paystubs

      • Elena,
        Assuming you worked on H1B for few weeks, you are fine to transfer.
        You do not need any pay stubs as you are not in US and on H1B, all they need is your h1B for cap exempt filing.

  37. Hi, My passport is about to expire in Nov,2020 i.e, in another 4 months. I am switching to new employer and initiating H1 transfer. Is it required to have my passport renewed for my h1 transfer ? Due to covid19 lockdown ckgs is closed, and not sure when I will have my passport renewed. Please tell me if I have to wait or go ahead with transfer?

  38. Hi Kumar,
    My H1b transfer was initiated from A to B.
    My I140 was approved 6 months back but I was not aware of it ( as USCIS showing as RFE received) and have receipt number with me.
    My new employer B initiated H1B transfer with 140 receipt number and recently i got to know that my I 140 was approved 6months from employer A after we file H1B transfer to employer B.
    What will happen in this case of H1B transfer?

    • Swe2020,
      It will not have any positive or negative impact. All it tells is that you are eligible for transfer. if your application for transfer is good, you are going to get approval.

  39. Hello,

    I am currently working for Employer A and will be joining Employer B next week (H1B transfer approved). Today, I got an offer from Employer C, which I can’t easily let it go. My plan is to join Employer B for now (as I already gave notice to Employer A) and join Employer C once my transfer with Employer C is approved. My question is, do we need pay stubs with Employer B for my new H1B transfer? I have paystubs with Employer A till date, but it will not be my employer anymore from next week. I have a clean record in US and no previous immigration issues. All employers are reputed companies and full time opportunities. Please suggest me few options.

    Best Regards,

  40. Hi,

    I’m working at a ABC university and I have my cap-exempt H1B approved. I’ve never been counted against the lottery. Once i start my green card and get my i-140 approved from the university, will i be able to transfer to a for profit company?


    • Hemanth, I am in a similar situation and from what I heard when I spoke to an attorney, it looks like nobody actually knows exactly how this works. Only option is to file and see what happens! If you have had any success please do let me know.

      • Rashmi,
        Thanks for your reply. Sure will let you know.
        What if i try to transfer to a for profit company from a non profit organization? Will my H1B transfer be denied?

  41. Hi Kumar,

    I got my H1b stamped on April 2018 but unfortunately I couldnt travel to US because lack of projects with my emplyer

    What are my options ?

    1. Sadly my visa got expired on Sept 2019.
    2. Can I file for amendment from India with an help of an employer ?
    3. Am I eligible for visa transfer (normal or premium visa transfer) process?
    4. Any other valuable inputs from your side ?


  42. Hello,

    I am currently in the process of getting my H1B transferred to a new employer.
    The new employer has asked me to submit all documents including my current H1B visa stamps in the passport.

    My H1B visa stamp expired last year, however my i-94 and i-797 petitions are still valid till end of 2020. I didn’t get a new stamp as i didn’t got an opportunity to travel out of the states.

    Do you think, not having a valid Visa stamp on passport could be a problem for filing the H1 transfer petition?

    Thank you


      • I have a approved i140 from employer A ( approved for more than 180 days). My i94 from the employer A is valid until dec 2021. The company was getting shutdown so I got a notice of two months to serve employer A. I started looking for job to maintain my status and I got an offer from employer B ( more or less same job position and salary)
        I accepted the offer and they filled my H1b transfer, due to the current situation I joined the company B after their LCA got approved. I am still waiting for the receipt number to come( 15 days over now), But already started working in company B, which they said is allowed. My transfer is still pending ( regular processing).
        In the meantime ( like within a week of joining company B) I got a very good offer from a different company C with a promotion and much better pay hike. They are willing to apply my H1b in premium processing.
        Now my questions is;
        1. Whether the H1b transfer filled by company C be considered as a bridge/ dependent on company B petition ? I have a valid i94 which I got during the H1b extension from employer A. But I have now quit my first job and joined company B. So I am not sure if my previous i94 will be still considered as valid or not? Please help. Thank you so much.

        • Nupur,
          Well, it is technically a bridge petition. As you were not in proper status when you filed for B. Having I-94 is one part, maintaining status is second part. Ideally, you should be in proper status ( i-94 and working too) and then apply for the transfer. Also, in general, you should not work before the receipt notice. The reason is, let’s say something is wrong and they do not accept your petition, then your work becomes illegal..so, need to be careful. Some are grey areas and it is subjective. Discuss with Attorney at company C and then make a decision.

          • Thank you Kumar!

            Few Updates in my case: I have received my receipt number and also my current company has agreed to upgrade my visa extension case to premium processing. So as for my understanding goes, now I have to wait for the visa extension through my current company to get approved first and then I can request the new company to start my visa extension afresh. That’s possible right?

  43. Hi,
    My H1 extension got denied in mid-April and I94 also expired. I have I-140 approved. Due to Covid, I am not able to travel back. Attorney is doing paperwork for COS to B2.
    (a) Will there be an issue with COS to B2.
    (b) Can I look for other employer to do a H1 and transfer over. I cannot show pay-stub starting mid-april.
    (c) Any other risks moving to new employer
    (d) If the H1 goes thru with new employer, will it wipe-out the illegal stay days that I have accrued

    • LostS,
      a. Should not be. COVID-19 is classified as a special situation and USCIS will consider that for COS.
      b. If it is denial, then you cannot. You may try to do COS after B2 is approved by filing COS from B2 to H1. But, that is really timing thing and many do not recommend it.
      c. same as b
      d. same as b.
      Discuss with your attorney and plan. Your situation is very different as you got denial, so your options are limited.

      • Thanks Kumar. Just confirming… In the point 2) finding a new employer to do H1 might not work. Can my current employer do a H1 with my current status.
        Also, after b2 application is put in and pending, can I do H1?

        Thanks in advance.

          • Thanks Kumar. Will check.
            Do you see any other alternatives. I am trying to see how I can reduce the impact to my kid’s studies.


  44. Hi Kumar – is H1B Transfer also deemed a ‘sponsorship?’ What is the difference in terms of cost for filing a H1B Petition (lottery process) vs. filing a H1B Transfer?

  45. Any idea on how many days it takes to get receipt number for a h1 transfer case after uscis receives the transfer petition? Since premium processing is suspended , I have filed under regular processing on April 29.

    • HI,

      My 60days grace period ends today

      I found the new job and employer who is willing to transfer my h1b on 15th march and documents to Uscis on April 9th.

      I havent recieved reciept yet.

      Should i go back to the home country and come back after approval( however i cant travel now due to covid,)
      Is there any other way that i can able to maintain my status?

      • sabat,
        Is it already filed or NOT ? We are in May, you should have heard something by now, if they applied in April.
        You should apply for COS to B2, if you have not applied for H1B.

        • I have already applied kumar. They told it has been received by uscis on 22nd of April. Will be out of status even in the processing stage?

  46. Hi,
    I have joined to new employer with H1B transfer receipt number and payroll has started with new employer.
    Question : If something goes wrong H1B transfer or not approved , Can I still come back to old employer and start working in old employers payroll since my current H1B valid till Oct-2021 and I-140 approved with current employer 6 years before.

    Please advise.

    • Karthik,
      This maybe possible, if your I-94 is not expired and the old employer has not withdrawn the H1B petition. Always discuss with your attorney on these kind of situations and then only plan.

  47. Now correctly I am working on L1 B in company A but I got selected in H1B company B , we want to stay back with company A . My question is
    1. If I want to stay back with company A do i have to work in company B to get pay stubs before transferring back to company A or before joining company B can i port the H1 B to company A without Resigning from company A.

    2. When will be my L1 B status get changed ?

    3. What happens if there is a RFE on my transfer? Can i maintain my status in L1B?

    • Mani,
      1. Just getting registration does not do anything. You need to submit the actual petition. When they submit the petition, you can ask to choose as Consular processing to avoid Change of Status. Read H1B COS vs Consular processing.
      2. If they file as COS, then it will change on October 1st, if h1B approved with COS.
      3. You need to maintain L1B status until you get H1B approved and until October 1st, if approved earlier..

      • Thanks for your information

        My question is once I get H1B approval for Company B , can I transfer my approved petition to Company A before joining company B.

        • Mani,
          Well, this is grey area…usually USCIS expects that you get H1B status by working or getting stamped…if you try to do before that, USCIS may question status…hard to say.


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