How long does H1B visa Petition processing Take

How long does H1B Visa Processing take? Petition Premium vs. Regular ?

In Apply H1B Visa by KumarUpdated : 3525 Comments

We have been writing about H1B visa related stuff for a very long time and tracking H1B visa  updates with graphs and analysis. Some of the most commonly asked question on the blog are around processing times like :

  • I have applied for H1B on April 1st. Still my status is “Initial review”, How long does USCIS take ?
  • USCIS received my H1B petition three months ago, still no response. I am worried. Can you tell me how long will they take ?
  • My employer says they filed in June, still no reply from them? How long will they take?
  • What is H1B visa processing time ?
  • Can I contact USCIS and upgrade my H1B visa processing ?
  • Will upgrading to Premium get me decision quicker? I filed as regular processing.
  • Does USCIS have any turnaround time on regular processing application? Why do they take so long?

I can keep on writing various versions of the questions. Let me share few things which I have replied to over and over again on the blog comments. If you know the answers to above, do not read any further…it is just for those who do not know anything.  In case you do not know how to read your H1B case number, read article Understanding H1B Case/Petition Number . Also,  If you do not the various  H1B application  statues, read :  H1B Statuses RFE, Approval, Denial and How to check

What is Regular Processing in context of H1B Visa Filing ?

If an employer filed H1B petition with USCIS by standard process and does not include extra fee to have the petition adjudication( decision ) to be one faster, then that petition is treated to be filed under regular processing.

What is Premium Processing in context of H1B Visa Filing ?

If an employer pays extra premium processing fee to USCIS to have the H1B petition adjudication to be one ( decision ) within 15 calendar days, then that petition is treated to be filed under premium processing.  H1B premium processing is a way to expedite processing your application. It costs additional $1,410( fee increased in October 2018)  and the turnaround time is 15 calendar days.  The goal of premium processing is that USCIS will have a decision of your case within 15 days.

How long does USCIS take to process H1B visa petition Regular processing ?

There is no correct answer to this question. The answer to this question depends on the case and filed location. Every case in unique and every location has its own processing times.  The typical duration for processing any H1B visa application can take anywhere from 2 to 6 months. The best case scenario is :  H1B  visa approval decision can take less than 2 months. The worst case scenario for the decision from USCIS can be as long as 6 months or more. You can check article  Check USCIS H1B Visa Processing times

Does USCIS have any turnaround time/ SLA requirements for H1B processing?

Unfortunately, there is no defined turnaround time/ SLA ( service level agreement) requirement for USCIS to respond to H1B petitions filed with them. Remember, H1B petition is just one of the type of visa application of what USCIS handles. They have lot of activities that they handle and did not set any SLA for processing of H1B visa petitions for regular processing. The SLA applies to only petitions filed under premium processing.

Any higher approval chances in Premium processing ?

No, applying for H1B premium processing will not increase your chances for getting H1B petition approved.  It just expedites the processing time. So, do not be mislead by the fact that $1,410 will increase chances of approval. Read 5 H1B Visa Myths you need to know

Should you apply for Premium H1B Visa Processing ?

Honestly, unless there is a need, you do not need to apply for premium processing. Think of it logically, you cannot work until October 1st…why waste money ? I understand the decision part for preparation and other stuff.  Unless, there is a need there is no point. Besides, in the most recent couple of years, premium processing is suspended for cap subject petitions to decrease overall processing times of all petitions. But, unlike new cap subject petition, for H1B Transfer scenarios, employers usually apply for premium because of two reasons, first they can work right away and need not wait till October 1st and secondly they are changing between companies, you do not want to be stuck with old employer during this time. You can consider doing premium, when you are at the end of September. Also, to add USCIS suspended H1B Premium Processing for FY 2019  and then further extended suspension till Feb 2019 , so technically you cannot file H1B under premium processing for 2018 season.

Applied for H1B Petition in April , Still USCIS status says “Case Received ”, What should I do ?

Well, unfortunately, there is nothing you can do but wait for USCIS to process your application. As I said above, it can take anywhere from 2 to 6 months or more. All you can do is wait. Do NOT panic that you are not getting any response from USCIS. As long as your application was filed properly and the company is good, you should get approval.

Here are few things  you can do:

  • If you are really curious, you may apply for H1B visa premium processing anytime for general petitions by paying  $1,410and upgrade your case. Your employer has to do the premium processing through the attorney. You cannot do it on your own. But, you may not be able to do this for cap subject petitions for FY 2019, as it is not available till Feb 19, 2019. Update : Premium Processing Resumed for FY 2019 Cap subject petitions from Jan 28, 2019.
  • You can ask your attorney to call USCIS and ask the status. In the past, one of our blog readers said, they had success and their application decision was done in a week after calling. Although, there is no guarantee. Worth a shot.
  • You can check the particular service center where your petition was filed and get approximate processing times to get an idea. You can do this on USCIS website it is under bottom where you check your case status.
  • Just wait. I understand the anxiety…but there is no shortcut.

How long does H1B transfer take ? Any difference in processing time ?

In fact, there is no difference between a regular H1B petition and transfer except the transfers are not considered towards cap. So, the processing times are same. Anywhere from 2 to 6 months or more. For current processing times,  read this article : How to check H1B visa processing times at USCIS Service centers

Why H1B Processing Take much longer for FY 2019 ? Any reasons ?

USCIS is taking much longer than previous years for processing H1B visa 2019 petitions. Many are still waiting for their update as it is past October, they are all worried. The main reason for the delays are the changes in some of the rules that Trump Administration has taken in the last one year. You may read Trump Administration H1B Changes in past 1 year. Also, one of the rule that has significant impact is Third Party worksite rule changes for H1B, USCIS is taking more time to review and then issue RFEs. Because of premium processing, many of the H1B transfers, extensions were filed in premium and USCIS had to prioritise to meet the 15 day deadline. USCIS addressed this issue by extending H1B premium processing suspension for majority of the cases until Feb 19, 2019.  ( Update : USCIS Resumed premium Processing for FY 2019 Cap Subject petitions. on Jan 28th, 2019 )This would help them clear the backlogs. It can be very frustrating and may seem like you have no hope, but that’s how it works, you just need to wait !

Is there any H1B tracker where users added their case and I can get an idea of times ?

You can check out the average H1B Visa processing times using our H1B Visa Tracker ( below link).  All the data on our tracker page is contributed by users like you. Please add your H1B  case by registering and continue to update with your status. It will help others get an idea.

H1B Visa Case Tracker

Check out H1B Visa Processing Times with anonymous data from everyone.

Hopefully, this clarifies most of the commonly asked questions about H1B processing. If you see anyone ask a question on the blog, please point them to this article.

How much was your H1B Visa filing processing time ? Any thoughts to share on the processing time waiting ?

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Comments ( 3,525 )

  1. kuzhali

    Hi,

    My husband is in US in L1 Visa, My company is processing H1B-Regular for me. They collected all the documents and planning to file the petition before Jan-2011 end in 2011 quota. Do you know how long it will take to approve that petition in regular H1B Processing. You mentioned 2-6 months normally it will take.Do you have any idea that all 2011 filed petitions will be complete before Mar31 or it will extend more.

    Please reply.

    1. administrator
      Saurabh

      It is not required for USCIS to adjudicate all the petitions by 31st March. They are not bound by that deadline, but they would like to wrap these petition ASAP to avoid combining this year’s fiscal load w/ next year’s.

      Unless we see progress in their processing times, one should be prepared for the worst case scenario (i.e. delays of up to 4-5 months).

  2. Karthik

    Hi,
    My case is one of a kind.. details are as in below, any advice on my case is really appreciated..

    Case filed on May 26th 2010
    RFE received on Aug 18th
    Response received by USCIS on sep 9th
    Current status as on 01/13/2011 – RFE Response review…

    I will be completing my 240 days minimum stay in the USA by Feb 12th and my company is in the process of upgrading my case to premium processing. My case is not going through any background or security checks, but still i am not sure why this delay. I am really frustated because of delay, since i am unable to make a proper decision…. I am sure you might not have a concrete reason, but appreciate any advice.

    This is also an fyi for most of you guys who get panicked and are reacting prematurely, you need to realize that there is nothing much you can do but to remain serene.

    1. administrator
      Saurabh

      It shouldn’t have taken that much time for them to review the RFE response. The unfortunate part is that the current system leaves us w/ very little option – either one can wait or can upgrade the petition to premium processing.

      IMO, it’s the right thing to upgrade it to premium processing now, even though it costs 1,225 USD.

  3. roney

    Hi Guys,
    My H1B(Regular) has been filed with USCIS on Nov 5th on california, still it is on “initial review” does any one get approvel for same.

    1. administrator
      Saurabh

      You should expect 3-4 months delay w/ the petitions filed. As it has been 2 months since your petition was filed, you may have to wait for another 1-2 months before seeing any activity on your petition.

      USCIS processing has really slowed down this year.

        1. administrator
          Saurabh

          You can go for interview once you have the necessary documents required for stamping and dates are available at a consulate closest to your residence state.

          1. roney

            I got approval for my H1.
            I have a question. My L1B was rejected and B1 was canceld in Aug. Will there be any problem during stamping.

          2. administrator
            Saurabh

            You need to remain truthful on the DS form (I think there is a question related to past rejections) and the officer may also ask you about the rejection. If you know about the rejection reason you can let him/her know, otherwise you can say that you weren’t told the specifics.

            It won’t impact the final outcome of the stamping as long as you remain truthful and the rejection reason wasn’t false material representation on your part.

  4. Saurabh Jain

    Hi Saurabh,

    My H1 VISA was filed in the month of April, 2010. I got an RFE to which I replied in the month of October 19, 2010. Its more then 2 months since I have replied. Still my case status is’ RFE response review’. What should I do now? Should I apply for premium processing?

    1. AK

      My case too ‘RFE response review’ since Nov 24.Thereafter no change.I have applied in Vermont centre under Regular quota.Please update me when there is any change in your status.
      Thanks&Regards,
      AK

    2. AK

      My case too RFE response review since Nov 24.I have applied in Vermont centre under regular quota.Please update when there is any change in your status.

    3. administrator
      Saurabh

      IMO, one should apply for premium processing only when there is an urgent travel requirement or any other requirement that needs you to have the approved petition ASAP. Otherwise I don’t see why you or company would want to spend those extra 1000 odd bucks.

  5. Siddharth

    Hi Saurabh,

    If there are delays in the updates on the USCIS website, how can one can know that what is the status of the visa petition? Now that you have mentioned this, I will like to ask you about my case. My petition was received by USCIS on 13th October. The status for the same is showing as “Initial Review” till date. Is there a probability that the petition may have got approved and for some unforeseen reasons, the USCIS website is still showing the petition status as “Initial Review”?

    1. administrator
      Saurabh

      The mismatch is more of an exception than a rule. In most of the cases, the online status is updated, while there are only handful of cases where they will miss it. If you want to see if you fall into that handful of cases, you can ask your employer to call up USCIS and get the latest information.

      Besides if your petition would have been approved, your employer should have received the approved 797.

      1. Siddharth

        Thanks Saurabh. I followed up with the immigration department of my employer. They have told me that they have not received the approved 797 for my case as of yet. Will keep you posted once I get an intimation of the same.

  6. Malathi

    Hi Saurabh/Kumar,

    I was just going through your answers and felt like you are amazing. I did not come across such an excellent website for all our visa queries. I have a question to you.
    My husband is on L1 visa and planning to change to H1B. We are looking for companies who will sponsor H1B visa. One of my friends said that there are no companies offering H1. Is that true? If it is not then please send some reference companies who sponsor H1. My husband has 11yrs of IT experience.
    What is the procedure to file H1B visa of our own and then search for a job.
    Looking forward for a reply. Thanks in advance.

    1. administrator
      Saurabh

      Malathi,

      Your husband needs to find a company that is ready to sponsor his H1. The company needs to do the paperwork, and file the H1. If your husband wants to start working on H1, w/o going out of the country, then the employer needs to file it along w/ COS (change of status). Otherwise, he can file the H1 w/o COS.

      Once the H1 is approved (and assuming COS is also approved), he can start working on H1. If the employer is a consulting company, then they/your husband need to find a project/client. If it’s a non-consulting company, then he can start working on the product etc.

      Remember, legally:
      – Your employer needs to pay for the H1 fees
      – Your employer needs to pay you all the while on H1 w/ or w/o project

      I would encourage you to go through rest of the articles Kumar has written. You should be able to find answers to most of your questions in them; if not, you can post those specific questions.

      Good luck!

  7. Sailesh

    Hi,
    Please let me know whether there are any delays in updating the case status in USCIS web site?
    I am asking this because; I could find the status change (Request for Evidence Response Review from RFE) for my H1B petition in USCIS web site only on 1st December 2010. But in the petition description it is mentioned as the USCIS received the response to the RFE on 18th November 2010.
    It means whether the USCIS got the response for RFE on 18th November 2010 and they started the review on 1st December 2010? Please clarify me on this.

    Thank You.

    1. administrator
      Saurabh

      Yes, USCIS website is not always in sync w/ current updates on one’s petition. In the past, I have read about cases where a person’s petition got approved, but the online status continued to say “Initial Review”. The website is your only window to look into USCIS, but sometimes, it’s not current.

      1. Siddharth

        Hi Saurabh,

        If there are delays in the updates on the USCIS website, how can one can know that what is the status of the visa petition? Now that you have mentioned this, I will like to ask you about my case. My petition was received by USCIS on 13th October. The status for the same is showing as “Initial Review” till date. Is there a probability that the petition may have got approved and for some unforeseen reasons, the USCIS website is still showing the petition status as “Initial Review”?

  8. JK

    Dear Saurabh / Kumar,

    My H1 B extension was filed on Sep 5 where my I94 expires on Sep 20. I am still getting ‘Initial Review’ status. I have asked my employer to upgrade it to premium processing for bringing my family. But they are not willing to do that. I am not sure they will do that. My friend is offering me a job. Is it possible to switch to new job when my H1B extension is in process? Will it create any problems? All I want is to travel to India and bring my family asap. I dont know how much frustrated I am.

    Thanks In Advance
    JK

    1. administrator
      Saurabh

      You should be able to apply for H1 transfer at this point, and submit the copy of extension document as proof that you have been maintaining legal status (even though your I-94 is expired). Once the new petition arrives, you can go to India, get H1/H4 stamped and re-enter and work for the sponsoring employer.

  9. Amit Kumar

    Hi,

    My employer is going to file H1B petition, under PP for me, sometimes next week.

    Regarding my experience letter from the past employers, I was able to give only for my last employers where I had worked for 3.6 years for the remaining past employer, I could give only my employment/offer letter. will this create an RFE for me to necessarily provide the experience letters from all the past employers..

    Regarding my degree certificate, is it mandatory to provide the degree copy, I was able to provide my provisional for Degree and Mark sheets for PG, is that not sufficient or I will receive RFE for this instant.

    1. administrator
      Kumar

      Amit,
      About experience, it depends…few years of experience should do. But, as far as education degree certificate is concerned, USCIS says you have to submit either proof of degree, if your degree is awarded or final transcript(marksheet) and letter from registrar stating you have met the degree requirement. Read the question “Does USCIS require Education degree” question in USCIS FAQs

      It is very relative, they may or may not be keen on it. Provisional usually says you have completed requirements and will get degree…but, we dont know how they adjudicate. The attorney would be the best person…

    2. administrator
      Saurabh

      Experience letters and degree certificates are recommended documents to prove that the resume is not fake, and that the alien has the necessary education and skill set to satisfy the job requirements.

      It is not necessary that RFE will be issued for the missing documents. What USCIS will do is evaluate your profile, and see how risky it is. If they feel it’s risky or smell fish, they will issue the RFE and ask for the documents. If not, they will approve the petition w/o any questions.

      Recent payslips can also help in proving that you have been continuously employed by the last employer. As for the degree certificate, if the original was never issued, then you can tell the same to USCIS and submit the provisional copy.

  10. Ram

    Hi Saurabh/ Kumar,

    My H1 is under extension since Jun 2010 and got an RFE in Nov 2010 which was replied to by the employer last week. Is it true that one cannot move a work location , client(but same employer) while under extension process ? if so, why ? also, if I get premium processing now , can the LCA slots be applied in parallel for the new location or does it have to wait till I get teh approved petition ?

    Thanks

    Ram

    1. administrator
      Saurabh

      New work location or change in duties requires new LCA to be filed. And when you have a petition pending, filing a new LCA is not recommended, as you will be amending the underlying LCA for your H1-B.

      A safer option would be to get H1 approved, and then have LCA amended. I guess it is ok to paperwork while H1 is still getting approved.

      1. Ram

        Thanks, but my current assignment is due to end by this month end. As you can see, my extension is going on and on for more than 6 months and I need to shift to another assignment (same employer) – hence I cannot indefinitely wait for H1 to be approved.But even this changing of client seems not possible – what is the way out ? these rules dont make sense

        1. administrator
          Saurabh

          What you can try to do is have your employer file a new LCA for you. Once that is filed and approved, your employer can file an amendment to the H1 petition. Tedious and a bit expensive.

          Is there an attorney working on your case?

          1. Ram

            Thanks. I guess attorneys are always there 🙂 but we dont get to interact with them directly

            A few related sub -queries :

            1. Approx. how long do you think the new LCA would take ? since I dont have much time left – strictly speaking the current assignment is done by dec end.

            2. I am told that the new LCA(for transfer between clients) would be initiated only if there is an approved H1 petition – so it seems a chicken and egg story ?

            3. I have actually seen a similar case where transfer between clients(within the same employer) was done extn was processed – not sure why the double standards ?

            4. My RFE has been replied to last week – will premium intiation now be in any way detrimental ?also, how long would the transfer take in case its approved via premium within 2 weeks?

          2. administrator
            Saurabh

            1. Up to 2 weeks

            2. I don’t think you need to have an approved H1 petition for that. That would come into picture at the time of H1 filing (I-129), when you would have to prove that you have already been counted in quota once, and you have been maintaining status in US.

            3. Lot of these situations are subjective. USCIS usually issues guidelines and it is left up to the officer to use his best judgment. So the outcome of similar scenario may or may not provide accurate indication about your case.

            4. PP will take 15 calendar days. If you file now, it may still drag into 1st week of Jan.

            I asked about attorney because your case involves complexity. I can only provide limited inputs, but an attorney will be able to provide you a legal advise.

          3. Ram

            Thanks again.

            In case I return to India now, will the extension process be affected in any way ? can I get a stamping done in India if I get the approved petition when I am in India?

          4. ram

            I have not got any decision as on date.
            Can i change employers in this period ? I dont have the physical copies of the documents submitted for extension(as the present employer handled them) to show proof of maintaining visa status – can the Case / Petition number suffice for this purpose ?

          5. administrator
            Saurabh

            If you leave US now, your extension will still be processed, but you will have to get H1 stamping done (in case the old stamping has expired).

          6. administrator
            Saurabh

            Yes, you can still change the employers. Even having the receipt number should be sufficient.

          7. ram

            Thanks again.

            Just to be clear – I don’t have any receipt number since the documents were sent by my employer – all I have is the case number (which I use to check the status on the website) – is this the one you are referring to/ would it suffice ?

          8. administrator
            Saurabh

            Yes, that’s the receipt number (starting w/ EAC or WAC). Once you find the new employer, provide their attorney this information as proof of you maintaining valid status.

          9. administrator
            Saurabh

            Congrats Ram. For my information sake, can you let me know what happened to your LCA – was it modified after/before the extension?

          10. ram

            well, there was no LCA change initiated by the company until the petition was approved – that was the whole issue for myself in moving locations – even now, the approved pet. has to physically reach the office and i can initiate transfer request only when they change in the company’s IT systems

  11. Rob

    I am a Ghanaian Nurse with 19 years experience. I have ATT for the nclex but it has expired. I want to come on H1-B visa but do not know much about it. Can someone tell me more about it, who qualifies and how much it costs to get it.
    Thank you.

    1. administrator
      Saurabh

      You can get more information in one or more of these links:
      http://redbus2us.com/category/h1b-visa-consulting/apply-h1b-visa-h1b-visa-consulting/

      The job must require at least 4 years of college degree (equivalent to US Bachelors) and must be specialized job.

      Cost is b/w 2000-2500 USD (you may find the exact number in one of the above articles) excluding attorney costs. However, legally the employer is supposed to incur most of these expenses.

  12. Sailesh

    Hello,

    My H1B petition got filed on 30th July 2010. The petition was moved to RFE on 7th October 2010. I submitted all the required evidence through my employer on November 15th 2010. In USCIS web site i could find that my petition status is moved to ‘Request for Response Review’ state on November 18th 2010.

    Please let me know approximately when I can know whether my petition is approved or not.

    Thank You.

    1. administrator
      Saurabh

      Same answer what I quoted to a similar question –

      There were few holidays in b/w; I think you should hear something within next few weeks. Because an RFE was issued, it means USCIS officer has already had 1st pass at your petition, and so there should be less delay now.

  13. Amit Mishra

    Hi
    This is Amit. My employer applied for me H1B on 08-Sep-2010. I got the my petition receipt on 9th September. But till now I didn’t get my approval. So my employer converted my petition in premium process on 10th Dec 2010. After in how many days I can get my H1B status. is there any deadline for the same.

    Thanks
    Amit

    1. administrator
      Saurabh

      As replied in the above article, it will take 15 days.

      Kumar is taking a lot of effort in writing these articles in a an easy readable format. It would serve best, if people could actually read those articles before asking questions that are already answered in the article.

      Not saying, I mind replying, but it will speed up the process, as now one doesn’t need to wait for me (or someone else) to response.

  14. Balu

    Hi,

    My H1B petition filed on July27th and went to RFE on October 25th. I submiited all the relevant documents on Novemebr 15th. But after that no updates. Can you please help me what the expected time for the process to complete.

    1. administrator
      Saurabh

      There were few holidays in b/w; I think you should hear something within next few weeks. Because an RFE was issued, it means USCIS officer has already had 1st pass at your petition, and so there should be less delay now.

    2. Sailesh Manoharan

      Hi Balu,

      Can you pease let me know whether you got any update on your petition?

      My case is very much similar to your case. I am waiting for the decision.

  15. Bita

    Dear sir, thanks for your website

    I have read that it takes 2-6 months to get the approval also somewhere else that you must apply for VISA after approval at least 3 months before your entry , my employer is going to apply for my case these days, assume he set the start date on 1st April then what would happen if I get the approval lets say on 1st of March or even after 1st of April , can this be a problem?

    Thanks for your time

    1. administrator
      Saurabh

      There is no requirement that stamping needs to be done at least 3 months prior to entry in US. In your example, you can still go for stamping after 1st March and enter US on 1st April.

  16. Lakshmi

    Hi

    Currently im on H4 trying to apply for h1. untill what time i can apply for 2010 h1 visa.. can i apply it in jan 2011 also if the applications are still open?

  17. Wondering

    Hi, is it okay to travel to India for my wedding while my I-129 petition is being processed. The status is in ‘initial review’ for more than 2 and a half months now.
    What are the chances?

    1. administrator
      Saurabh

      If the petition was filed along w/ COS, then your COS will be considered abandoned if you travel outside of US. If it was filed w/o COS, then you can travel to India w/o any issues. Do remember you need a valid unexpired visa in order to re-enter US. If you don’t have one, then you need to get it stamped while in India.

  18. Rajesh

    Guys,
    Can anyone share their experiences of H1B stamping in india, I heard there very less probability of getting stamped these days.

    1. administrator
      Saurabh

      Chances of approval varies from case to case, and there is no ‘one size fit all’ for your question. If you have all the necessary documents, chances of rejection are close to none.

  19. Anupam

    I received a RFE 2nd in response to my RFE. how should my organization go about it?
    They are asking me to file the same information as before in terms of an endorsement letter from my manager in the US.

    Please advise.

    Thanks.
    Anupam

    1. administrator
      Saurabh

      Did you submit letter from the client manager in response to 1st RFE? If not, then that’s what they really want to establish that you are working on a project.

      1. Anupam

        Yes Saurabh,

        I have the letter endorsed by my organization manager in the US and it was filed as RFE1.

        My immigration team wants to modify my role in the same letter but this may create discrepancy in the application. I am trying to check with higher authorities in my organization but everyone says that this is a very rare case.

        However, one of the senior immigration staff members encouraged me to respond to the RFE2 without modifying the letter (in terms of the role and project details). He is of the thought that the USCIS may just want you to re-check and re-file it.

        Please advise….
        Thanks.

        Please advise.

        1. administrator
          Saurabh

          If your employer’s immigration team is looking at the RFE, then I would say they are the best experts to comment on your case, as they are aware of the entire case history.

  20. Peter

    I am from the UK and work in publishing. I have a job offer from a US publishing company who are willing to pay me $30k / year. The prevailing wage for an ‘editor’ is over $42k, so unfortunately I cannot use this job title / SOC code for my Labor Condition Application. Is it possible to use a different code (e.g. for ‘Proofreader/Copy Marker’ or ‘Media and Communication Workers, All Other’) which is less close to the job I will be doing but whose prevailing wage is lower than the $30k I have been offered? Or are these lower-level SOC codes deemed unsuitable for H1B applications? I have a 4 year UK BA degree in Modern Languages (Russian and German).

    1. administrator
      Saurabh

      Legally, an alien is expected to perform duties similar to what is quoted in the LCA. Also, do you know if the job requires 4 year college degree? H1-B is applicable only for jobs that require 4 year college education.

      1. Peter

        Thanks for this response. The job is as an ‘Editorial Assistant’ (although the job title is open to change for the purposes of the LCA) and a 4-year BA is the industry standard for this position. Part of my remit will be reading foreign language books for potential acquisition by this US publisher – a task which requires fluency in several languages. But is it possible to tie a this relatively senior sounding job description to the SOC code for a similar but less-well-paid position? Or are there some SOC codes that are simply understood to be incompatible with an H1B application as they refer to jobs that don’t usually require a degree – even though proofreading manuscripts in Russian, for example, would require a degree-level fluency for a non-native speaker…

        1. administrator
          Saurabh

          I am not aware if there are job codes that are eliminated right away, but the petitioner may present job requirement in a way that mandates 4-year degree.

          On your other question, legally one should file the LCA for the actual underlying job. I would strongly recommend to hire an immigration attorney to prepare the LCA document for you. The attorney may be able to guide you what and how much can be tailored.

          Good luck!

          1. Peter

            Hi Saurabh,

            Just wanted to say thanks for your encouragement and advice – a lawyer is on the case so hopefully we’ll be able to find some kind of solution that suits both me and the employer.

            Thank you again and all best,

            Peter

  21. SS

    I filed for an H1B through PP (Premium Processing) and the USCIS received my documents on November 26. I have yet to receive a receipt date from them and i know that my checks have still not been cashed. Is this normal? What should i be expecting?

    Thanks,
    S

    1. administrator
      Saurabh

      Taking postal delays into consideration it may take up to 8-10 days for 797C to be received. However, USCIS should still honor that 15 calendar day limit.

  22. Divya

    On Nov 11 my petition was made as Premium processing. Till then my status was Initial Review. On Nov 18th my status went back to Acceptance and till now it is in the same status. Could anyone let me know the reason behind this. Am very much worried as teh status has gone back.

  23. Siddharth

    Guys,

    My employer has initiated the H1B processing for me. For me the case status is showing as “Initial Review” which moreover says that the application was recieved by USCIS on 13th October 2010. Can you please let me know approximately how much time will my case take to move to the approval stage?

    Siddharth

    1. administrator
      Saurabh

      Current timeframe is 3-4 months, if not filed w/ premium processing option. You can get the exact timeframes on USCIS website for your processing center.

      1. Ramesh Sudhir

        Hi Saurabh,

        I am in US with Company A on L1 visa which is getting expired on 1st Feb. Company B has filed my H1B (COS) on Dec 7th. I have already given 1 months Notice to my current employer. My Current employer want me to come back to India as per there policy.

        So if go back to India how much tedious would be the stamping process. What can i do to make this process faster as new employer would not wait that much.

        Thanks

        Thanks,
        Nema

        1. administrator
          Saurabh

          Was your H1 filed w/ Premium Processing? If yes, then you should hear the response within 15 days. Once you have the petition w/ you, you can schedule an appointment at one consulates. If everything goes fine, then you should receive the stamped passport within 1 week of stamping. Thereafter, you can enter US on H1 visa stamp.

          However, if H1 was filed w/o Premium Processing, then it may take up to 2-3 months to receive the approved petition. Rest of the process remains the same.

          1. Ramesh Sudhir

            Hi Surabh,

            Thanks for the response.

            Yes it is filed with PP. When it says 15 Calendar Days does that excludes Sat and Sun.

            I have not received the receipt yet . Attorney for the new company says that once i have the receipt i can scheduled the appointment and once have the H1 Approval the process could be faster. Whats your thoughts on this?

            Other thing is my company A will give relieving me in India only and Company B want me to Join as soon as I get h1B Approval.

            Can I join the company B before getting the relieving from Company A. there would be 7 days overlap in that. Could it be illegal.

            Third thing is as this is L1 to h1 transfer so while giving H1 Approval, does USCIS contact my current company(A) also.

            If some how I manage to get release from current company in few days here only would that cancel my L1 and If yes could it create issue in H1 Approal.

            Sorry for lots of questions.
            Thanks

          2. Rajesh

            Ramesh,

            Yes, The moment H1 is approved, L1 is Invalid. 7 days working on L1 should not be an issue as with USCIS we can tell about the notice period. Companies with the kind of policies they are making Employees bonded labor by other means like Experience certificates etc.1 thing it comes to my mind is that you can tell them ok, u will return back to india, but stay in US and tell them that u will be meeting after 1 or 2 weeks.
            Also the stamping depends on how ur company applied visa, Is it based on Client’s project or client letter or its internal project?

          3. Ramesh

            It a big company with 44K employee and they are having there own internal projects so for that they recruited me and filed my H1B COS(L1 to H1).

            The other problem I have is in my current employeer there is 1 months notice period which I can buy in one month Indian salary but with that they have the India return back policy. I dont know how to handle that. If i dont go to India now can they take some legal action against me or they would only not give reliveing (exp letter etc) ?

            Do you have Idea in L1 to H1 transefr do USCIS contact my current company (with whom I am with L).

          4. administrator
            Saurabh

            USCIS will not contact the current L1 employer. They need documents that show that you were maintaining your L1 status, which can be done through your payslips.

            However, the H1 employer may want to contact L1 employer/colleague for background check.

            Legally, one is not required to go back when resigning on L1. You will have to check if the company has an internal process where they would sue someone who leaves them in US. But then I doubt what’s the business justification for that? One may sue another, but whether that stands in court is a completely different ball game.

          1. Siddharth

            Thanks Kumar. I have checked the EAC number and it seems like mine is filed with the Vermont Service Center. It says that for a I-129 (Petition for A Nonimmigrant Worker), the processing timeframe is 2 months. It has been 2 months already for my case as it was received on 13th October by USCIS 🙁

      2. Ramesh Sudhir

        Hi Saurabh,

        I am on L1 Visa with company A and my H1B is filed by company B with premium processing. I have given my resignation to my current employer and serving the notice period of 1 month. They have one more condition of me going back to India for relieving which i want to avoid.

        They said If I don’t go back to India they will not give me relieving letter and exp certificate which i don’t need with new employer.

        The only thing I am concern about is my W2 form of 2010.

        So only the employer can provide me the W2 form for 2010 or I can get it form some govt site as well.

        If my current employer deny to give me W2 form what action I can take to get it.

        Thanks,
        Ramesh

        1. Ram

          Ramesh,

          W2 form can be accessed in the ADP site – https://ipay.adp.com/iPay/login.jsf

          same as where you can view/ download your paystubs

  24. al

    Guys,

    I got my receipt number for H1B on 23rd nov 2010. Do any one have idea how much time does it takes to get approvel. it processed at CALIFORNIA SERVICE CENTER location.

        1. administrator
          Saurabh

          Yes, the company/attorney can upgrade it to Premium processing. The cost is 1000 USD. USCIS will then adjudicate your petition within 15 calendar days, unless an RFE is issued, at which point you will have to respond to it. Once USCIS receives the response to the RFE, they will resume the process.

          You can go for visa stamping anytime after the petition has been approved.

          1. al

            is there any posibilty to delay after visa interview for H1 premium?
            one more thing, i went for L1 visa interview on 11th Aug and they did not give me L1 as well they cancelled my B1 without prejudic. So will it impect to my H1?

          2. administrator
            Saurabh

            I didn’t get 1st part of your question. Do you want to delay visa interview after H1 approval has arrived? If yes, then you can delay the stamping, and can go for it at a later stage (during the validity of the petition).

            L1 denial may impact your H1 depending upon the reason for denial. Was it because of your profile, background? Also is your L1 employer same as H1? Because your stamping has been denied, you need to make sure to mention that when you go for future stampings (there is a clause where they ask about past denials).

          3. administrator
            Saurabh

            It may or may not create problem depending upon the actual reason for rejection. Do you know why it was rejected?

          4. al

            They did not tell any reason but at the same time they canclled my B1 Visa because of frequent visit without prejudic and ask to apply for some other Visa.

          5. administrator
            Saurabh

            IMO, it will impact H1 visa only if the reasons haven’t changed since then. But if your visa was denied because of reasons specific to L1 (for e.g. job doesn’t qualify for L1 job etc), then you should be fine.

  25. Ibrahim

    Hi Kumar,

    I am working in a travel agency here in Pakistan and we have a branch in Texas as well, my employer is appying for H1B….are travel agancy visa in good books?
    I have 10 years exp and i have done masters..

    awaiting for a reply!

    1. administrator
      Saurabh

      As per law, H1B visa should be filed only for specialty job, which requires at least college degree. I am not sure if handling travel agency qualifies for H1. And over here college degree refers to job requirement, and not a person’s qualification.

      Your employer should contact an immigration attorney to find out if H1 can be applied or not.

  26. Rohini

    My employer applied for my H1b on 26th Oct 2010 under premium processing .

    Today the lawyer said there is a RFE on my application . They are asking for my marriage certificate and husband’s paystubs.

    What does this mean ? what is the new time frame now ? can anyone please explain me .

    thanks

    1. administrator
      Kumar

      Rohini, I do not know exactly how this works. My guess is the 15 day time limit for USCIS to respond stops after they give RFE and it re-starts after they receive RFE. I am just guessing here. Please check with your attorney.

    2. administrator
      Saurabh

      You probably filed from H4 to H1. USCIS needs to validate whether you maintained status while on H4, and for that they need your husband’s payslips (H4 status validity depends upon status maintenance by H1).

      1. rohini

        One more query :

        What exactly do you mean by “whether you maintained status while on H4 “. What exactly they are going to chk .

        I have already sent them the 2 documents , question is will it be done in the 15 day time window (PP) or no ETA ??

        thanks

        1. administrator
          Saurabh

          In case of COS, USCIS confirms whether the alien maintained status on the previous visa or not (in this case H4). So they want to check whether you maintained status on H4 which in turn means whether your husband maintained his status on H1 (H4 status is derived from H1).

          15 day window still holds good. I think it is reset when RFE is issued. So USCIS may take up to 15 more days once they receive your response.

          1. Rohini

            Still have not recieved anything

            H1b premium filed : 26th oct
            RFE: 11th Nov
            RFE filed : 12th Nov

            I am not sure what is happening .. its been more than 15 days since rfe is filed..

            can you guys throw some light..

            any help is appreciated.

            thanks

          2. administrator
            Saurabh

            If it has been more than 15 calendar days since RFE response was received by USCIS, ask your employer to contact USCIS and follow-up.

            BTW, did the employer post the response on 11/12 or was it received by USCIS on that date?

  27. Rob

    Hello,
    My H1-b visa experied Sept 30, 2010. My employer had filed the extension and USCIS received my documentation on Aug 23, 2010.
    I have the receipt number and I am checking everyday, but my case is still under initial review.
    I don’t have any rush at this moment of geting my Visa approved as I don’t need to travel oustide the US, so I was just planning on waiting until I get the approval.
    However; I am now wondering if I will be in trouble because my visa expired on Sept, 30, 2010 and we are in November already.
    I am still working with the same company and have no plans on moving.
    Will it be OK to wait as based on the website it could take up to 4 months at the Vermont office or should I change it to premium?

    1. administrator
      Saurabh

      You should be ok based on a pending H1 petition that was filed while you were still in status. You can continue to wait, or you can opt for premium processing if the need arises to receive the approval early (for example to extend driver license).

  28. VVR

    Hi
    My employer said he would apply a H1b for me and this is my first time.
    What kind of back ground check they do ? is it educational or professional and do i need to provide any info for that BC check?

    I have close to 8 yrs exp of which i worked in Europe pay rolls for 3.5 yrs.

    So pls let me know.

    regards

    1. administrator
      Saurabh

      They don’t initiate b/g check unless they find something fishy with your resume or your petition is just flagged in random process. If they do b/g check, they can query if the companies really existed or not, and/or if your degrees are real or fake.

      As long as you are not lying in your resume, you should be fine.

      1. Patricia

        No I am applying for the visa in the US, I already have the J-1(aupair – expires in dec 29) visa, now I am starting the process for get the H-1B(Working), but I want to apply for the F-1(student) visa just in case if the government say no for the H-1B, so can I apply for both at the same time, even If I am in the US?

        1. administrator
          Saurabh

          Technically, you can initiate process for both H1 and F1. However, your status will be determined by the visa i.e. is approved later (I am assuming you will be applying for both visa along w/ COS).

          When you apply for F1, there are lot of steps that need to happen before actual filing of visa (finding university, filing I-20, submitting SEVIS fees). So you can do all those things, and hopefully by that time you would have a clearer picture about your H1.

  29. mohan

    Hi,

    my employer applied for H1B on Aug till now there is no status shown .I called uscis but i dint get any answere from them,please let me know on this how can i trace this

    1. administrator
      Kumar

      Mohan, your employer should have given you a receipt number..you should check using that number online on USICIS website for status. Get that number from employer and check with it on their website.

  30. Radhika Sriram

    My H1B with my previous employer got expired on 16th of September,2010. I joined a new employer and they had filed for transfer and extension on 23rd of August. My case status is still “Initial Review”. Can I now bump my case of premium processing? Are there any risks in this? The reason why need it to be bumped to PP is that am planning to get married on Dec 9th and planning to start to India on 30th of November.

    In case if I get any RFE can I travel during that period?

    Any help on this is appreciated.

    Thanks in advance!

    1. administrator
      Kumar

      Radhika, Yes your employer can convert to premium processing….It can be tricky, check with lawyer on traveling on RFE.

    2. administrator
      Saurabh

      I am assuming your visa stamp expired along w/ previous 797 (as they typically have same expiry dates). If so, then you need to give some thoughts about your return plans. In order to return to US, you need to get visa stamped, and for that you need an unexpired 797. So you should still be able to travel in case RFE is issued, but you may have troubles getting H1 stamped and re-entering on that visa if it is not approved by then.

      1. Radhika

        Kumar/Saurabh,

        I applied for Premium processing on Nov 10th and got an RFE status today. 🙁 . Is there any chance of getting my Visa approved by 4th or 5th of Dec.. (:-( I know it is a long weekend and USCIS will not work). My marriage is on Dec 9th..

        1. administrator
          Saurabh

          Have you already responded to the RFE? Once USCIS receives the response, they may require another week or so to give their final decision. In case you haven’t replied until now, then you may not receive the final verdict by Dec 4th/5th.

          Here is another possibility. You leave US by Dec 4th, and let’s say petition gets approved on Dec 10th. The employer/attorney can post you the approved 797 to your India address, and you can take that for your interview.

          The only problem I can foresee is that if your transfer gets denied, then you may not be able to go for visa stamping, and hence return to US. How severe is the RFE?

          1. Radhika

            Hi,

            We still dint get any details on the RFE.. The status shows that the document was sent on Nov 23rd.. When is the details for the RFE usually sent..

          2. administrator
            Saurabh

            RFE details should be received by the employer within 2 weeks. Because there was Thanksgiving vacation in between, there might be an additional delay of few days.

  31. deepthi

    Hi,

    My employer had applied H1b visa for me but i have a small problem with my name it was miss spelled in all my certificates in my passport it is written as Deepthi Gadikota in certificates it is written as Deepthi Gadi Kota(space in-between the surname) and sometimes Deepthi G( surname is not elaborated) is that going to be a problem for H1B visa processing????

    I am very much worried. If anybody knows what to do in this case please reply me.
    Thank You.

    1. administrator
      Kumar

      Deepthi,
      Mistakes do happen…unfortunately, we cannot really guess how USCIS would react to it…The best advice would be to talk to your H1B lawyer and get things sorted out…

  32. Bala

    Hi,
    My H1B expired on sep 16 2010. My employer applied extension on Sep 2 in regular processing in Vermont centre. Still it is in Initial Review status. How long may it take to get the decision?
    My family (wife and son) is in India. I planned to get H4 after I get my extension. But as it is delaying so much, I was told that I can bring my family in Tourist visa. Is it feasible and possible? Please guide me in this.

    1. administrator
      Kumar

      Bala, I do NOT know the right answer if you can get them on Tourist visa when you have your H1B under process. Please check with a lawyer.

      1. administrator
        Saurabh

        They can file for tourist visa, however that might be more of nuisance. On tourist visa one has to show the intent of returning back to India. But as you are in US, there is no such intent and that goes against the purpose of tourist visa. Visa officer can take a note of this, and reject the tourist visa.

        The other thing is that even if tourist visa is approved, they will have to file COS to H4 once your H1 is approved to continue to stay in US as primary dependents of you.

        A better option would to be upgrade your H1 petition to premium processing. Yes, it will cost 1000 bucks more but filing tourist visa now and COS makes the other option no cheaper.

  33. Jatin Verma

    My Employer applied my new H1 on April 2010 and its still in Initial Review.he told me to look for JOb and then we will apply for Premium .I got a job last week and i am supposed to join it on 8 Nov .And my employer filed my premium Processing on Friday.
    My question is do you think it will be down in 2 weeks as my joining date is in 15 days.
    If it doesnt get approved by then can i join my new Job. Is it Legal ?
    Please guide me on this .

  34. Jyoti

    I have applied for H1 extension in May. I receive a RFE which was responded by my employer. Since August 31st my status online is the same that the query has been responded. My current visa has already expired on july. I have already booked my ticket to go to india for 2nd december for some ceremony. I am geting worried as still there is no respond for approval. How long does it take once the query has been responded ?

    1. administrator
      Kumar

      Jyothi it totally depends on the case, it is no different from a regular case. Ideally, you should get back something in 2 months. Wait for some time and if you think it is critical for travel, expedite to premium processing…you will have a decision.

      1. NeverEndingWait

        I am in the same boat. My RFE was responded on 4th Aug and since then the status is the same that the query has been responded.
        Its been more than 2 months (2 months 21 days) and I am very worried.

  35. Abhi

    Hi,
    My H1B extension (Normal processing) was applied on 28th April (current H1B expiring 14th Jul). But an RFE was issued which was replied on 4th Oct (USCIS Received on 4th). Now its been more than 60 months but I have not heard any response. How much longer I will have to wait.
    The noral processing time on the website states 2.3 months for H1B processing but not sure what is it after a response to RFE has been received.
    Also if for some reason, the extension is denied how much time I will have to leave the country considering I will be immdeiately out of status.

    1. administrator
      Saurabh

      60 months?
      .
      From your post it seems, USCIS received the response on 4th Oct 2010. So it’s just 10 days since USCIS received it.
      .
      On your other question, if the extension is denied, then the alien is supposed to leave US ASAP.

  36. deepak

    hi,
    My name is deepak.s.p my father surname is reddy and i dont have surname as reddy so will i have any problem in any process of admission or after admission in getting ssn,license etc.. plz reply

    1. administrator
      Kumar

      Deepak, I do not think it will be a problem. As long as you have your last name same on all your material consistently you must be fine. In all reality, in US you do not fill out your father’s name because you are an adult and not dependent on anyone.

  37. Sriraj

    Saurabh,

    My H1B applicatio, which is still under review, fulfilled all of these conditions:

    H1 was applied while you were still on OPT and you maintained legal OPT status all the while
    – H1 was applied along with COS
    – H1 start date was mentioned as 1st Oct 2010

    Can I work from Oct 1, 2010 until I hear about my H1B decision or only stay in legal status?

    1. administrator
      Kumar

      Sriraj, Is your OPT still valid or expired ? If your OPT is expired, then you cannot work…if not, you can continue to work. Read the question 6 from top on the USCIS OPT FAQ for more info.

  38. Krishna

    Hi .

    I have applied for for fresh h1b for FY2010 and got approved. I will be going to visa interview some time in october. I have a question, Right now i am holding a passport which expires on Nov 2010. I have applied for the new passport and I will be getting that in a week. But in I129 form I have the old passport number mentioned. Will there any problem when i carry two passports to visa office.

  39. Karan

    Hi Kumar

    I really appreciate you providing this forum, educating individuals like myself about the US immigration processes. I have a question pertaining to my case which I wanted to ask you.

    I am working for a company on an OPT which expired the 26th of July. On 3rd of May my company applied for an H1 visa for which the result is awaited. Currently I am on the cap-gap arrangement which will expire on the 30th of September when H1 kicks in. On the 22nd of September, my company applied for premium processing since I haven’t heard back and I am a little scared of going out of status. Now my question is, can I stay in America until I hear back on the H1 or do I have leave before 30th September since my H1 is still under review, Secondly if I get an RFE can I stay in the country till things are sorted out one way or the other? and finally if your answer to my first two questions is “no” is there any way of maintaining legal status in US while my H1 is being processed, thank you very much, I really appreciate your help.

    Karan

    1. administrator
      Kumar

      Karan, Technically you can stay in US until you hear back…but there is a catch here, if you get H1B approval you stay is fine….but, if you get a denial then your stay from Oct 1st will be out of status….Just check out the OPT Cap gap rules on USCIS website, it should clear some of your doubts. Read this USCIS Cap Gap OPT rules and also search on USCIS website for OPT, you will get plenty of info.

  40. Deep

    Hi,

    I am currently deputed in USA on H1B by an indian MNC. I have filed for my H1B transfer to another US employer through premium processing on 16-Sept-2010 and have received the file number. The application is under Acceptance state. Can I start working with the new employer without the approval? What can be the expected date for the case decision?

    Thanks you–

    1. administrator
      Saurabh

      One can start working for the new employer on the basis of receipt notice. However, if H1 transfer is denied, then you need to go back to your old employer or apply H1 transfer to another employer.

      If it’s filed under premium processing, then USCIS would adjudicate your petition within 15 calendar days (unless RFE is issued).

      1. Deep Mathur

        Thanks Saurabh,

        My H1B transfer has got an RFE which is specific for the company i.e. to show the number of H1B employees in company. I did talk to them and they told that it’s a minor query which will be responded in a day or 2. What can be the expected number of days to get the RFE resolved after the response is sent? Well I have already joined the new employer and waiting for the process to complete.

        1. administrator
          Saurabh

          I am not sure, but my best guess is that they will have to adjudicate it within balance of 15 calendar days. For example, if they took 7 days to issue RFE, then they will have 8 calendar days to approve/deny it now.

    2. Badri

      Deep,

      Is your case still in ‘Acceptance’?

      My employer filed H1B (PP) on 17-sep-2010, Receipt receieved (Email) on 22-sep-2010, My online status is still in ‘Acceptance’.

      Do i have to worry because it says it requires only 2 days in Acceptance.

      Thanks,
      Badri

      1. Deep Mathur

        No, I have got an RFE over the same.

        The case remains in Acceptance until review is done. After then it may be in approved/denied or some RFE. But for sure status has to be changed in 15 days.

  41. Nisha

    My company filed for my LCA with Dept of Labor on 16th Sept. My H1B will be filed with premium processing. I am on student OPT until October 4th 2010 and my H1B will be filed when I am still on OPT. My question is how long premium processing takes? When will I be able to start working on H1b (on date of receipt or date of approval or 1st October?)? Is the gap between OPT expiry and H1B approval legal? Please help me with your answers.

    1. administrator
      Saurabh

      Premium processing takes 15 calendar days. And clock starts ticking from the day petition is received by USCIS. You can start working on H1B, once it is approved by USCIS irrespective of whether it happens before Oct 1 or after that.

      Meanwhile, you are eligible for cap gap if the start date mentioned on your LCA is 1st Oct 2010.

  42. Ramu

    hi my company have applied h1b visa(regular) if the recevie date is 1 october 2010 when will it get approve(approximately) because i heard that if the visa is initiated after october 1st it will processed fastly and will take only a month to get approved

    1. administrator
      Saurabh

      The actual time taken depends upon the processing time of the service center. If there is a backlog, then the processing will take time irrespective of whether it’s filed after 1st Oct or before that.

      You can check the latest processing times on USCIS website for your service center.

  43. Belle

    Hello Saurabh,

    I have posted the question before. I’m afraid that you didn’t see it, so post it again. I have F1 visa right now (my OPT is till the end of Feb 2011) and am in the process for applying H1 Visa. I was just informed by attorney that the LCA was certified and they will put my case in file soon. the problem is I have to go to a conference outside of the States in the end of October( 10/25), so I have to get the H1 visa before that. do you think I can get the H1 Visa if I apply for the premium process? or i can just use my F1 Visa?
    thanks for your kindly help.

    1. administrator
      Saurabh

      Hello Belle,

      If you apply for H1 along w/ COS and go out of US on F1 while your H1 is pending, then your COS will be considered as abandoned. Safer options are:
      – apply for H1 w/ premium processing. If RFE is not issued then you should get the decision within 15 calendar days
      – apply for H1 after you return from your visit outside US.

  44. Anupam

    hi,

    My application was received by the USCIS on May 3, 2010. It is in the ‘Initial Review’ stage since then.

    As I wait for the decision, I still want to know if the decision activity can cross the date Oct. 1, 2010 (the date from which the H1 visa is ready to be used).

    Could you pls help me get an answer to above…?

    Thanks.

    1. administrator
      Saurabh

      Yes, it is possible that USCIS makes the final decision after 1st Oct. However, your H1 clock doesn’t start until you enter US on that visa. So you won’t lose any time because of the delay.

      1. Anupam

        Saurabh,

        I received a ‘Request for Evidence’. What is the likelihood for clearing this? How long does this take once my employer responds to it? Is it a standard request or is it specific to each case?

        Thanks.

        1. administrator
          Saurabh

          The likelihood depends upon how it is responded. If USCIS is satisfied w/ the information/documents provided, then it will be approved. The reason varies from case to case – it can be an easy one like missing document, to more complex ones like explaining employer-employee relationship.

          Good luck!

  45. Belle

    I have F1 visa right now (my OPT is till the end of Feb 2011) and am in the process for applying H1 Visa.
    8/23 My employer and me had sent out all the documents to the attorney
    9/9 The attorney respond expect to get the certified LCA back in the next few days, but it is not predicable.
    the problem is I have to go to a conference outside of the States in the end of October( 10/25), so I have to get the H1 visa before that. do you think I can get the H1 Visa if I apply for the premium process? or i can just use my F1 Visa?
    thanks for your kindly help.

    1. Belle

      I am just informed by attorney that the LCA was certified and they are sending docs for employer to sign today. do you think i should still apply for premium process if i need to leave the States for the conference on Oct 25th? or do you have any other suggestion. Thanks!

  46. Ravi

    Hi,

    My visa is going to expire on September of this year. I already applied for extension. Can i keep H1 Transfer for new job?

    Thanks,
    Ravikiran.T

    1. administrator
      Saurabh

      Let me know if I get this right – you want to apply for H1 transfer while your H1 extension is pending, correct?

  47. Satya

    Hi,
    My visa is going to expire on 30th sep 2010 and now my question is can i have a chance to come to US now. I need to come from India and I am having a client letter which i worked previously and he is interested to offer me once again. Please reply

    1. administrator
      Saurabh

      You can enter US anytime before Sep 30 after discussing the travel plans with your employer. You should not enter US w/o employer’s consent as he is legally required to pay you your salary while you are in US.

      If your visa gets expired, you can go for visa stamping using new client letter and other project details. If you have genuine documents, then the 2nd stamping should not be a issue. If asked by VO why you didn’t go the first time, and why now; you can reply that you had to delay your plans because of the economy and have a project now that you need to work upon.

  48. BbBB

    I am wondering if I am in trouble or not. My OPT is expired, and my H1B case is still pending . It had been 3.5 months since I received my receipt number. Some people said that I should keep my F-1 Visa. But, one of my friend told me that if I applied for a new school to keep F-1 Visa, the H1B Visa would not work even if approved. What should I do? Just wating for the decision?
    Look forward to your resopnse!
    Thank you very much!

    1. administrator
      Saurabh

      Does your case satisfy all the below conditions:
      – H1 was applied while you were still on OPT and you maintained legal OPT status all the while
      – H1 was applied along with COS
      – H1 start date was mentioned as 1st Oct 2010

      If yes, then you are eligible for cap gap. This provision allows you to stay in US until
      – Oct 1st 2010
      – your H1 is rejected/denied/revoked
      Your status will be extended automatically until the earlier of the two events.

      So if you are eligible for cap-gap, then your presence here in US is legal (at least until either of above 2 events happen). As you get closer to 1st Oct date, you can ask your employer to expedite H1 processing through premium processing. USCIS would then have to make sure that they adjudicate your petition within 15 calendar days.

      Hope that helps.

    2. Shweta

      Hi Saurabh,
      I have a query. I was going through my H1B filing documents today and noticed that there is discrepancy in client name in my filing PDF and justification letter document.In the filing PDF,client 1’s name is mentioned and in justification letter , client 2’s name is mentioned but address of client 1’s name is mentioned. I was earlier working with client 2 and currently working with client 1 and probably that has led to the confusion and hence error made by my employer.
      I already received my petition number in sep 1st week and still havent received the approval. Will this error in discrepancy in client name in filing PDF and justification letter impact my H1B approval?? I am very tensed, pls advice. Is there any workaround to rectify this. It has already been filed…Pls help..

      1. administrator
        Saurabh

        What is mentioned in the LCA and I-129? If that is the correct information, then ask the employer to issue new documents w/ all correct information.

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