Trump Signs Executive Order to Ban H1B H4 L1 and other visa Info

Trump H1B Travel Ban – Court Order, DOS Update [Oct 2020]

In US Immigration - Visas by KumarUpdated : 234 Comments

Initially, there were rumors stating Trump will sign Executive Order to Ban H1B, J1, L1, H4 entry to US. Eventually, on June 22, 2020, Trump officially signed the Executive Order(EO) that bans the entry of H1B, H4, L1, L2, J1 and others until end of 2020, with very few exceptions. As of October 2nd, 2020, a court order blocked it. This article covers the EO and latest news updates related to the same.

We have structured the article into sections, if you are looking for latest news, go down to the bottom or click on the News link in index.

US Dept of State Guidance on Court Order Blocking Trump EO

October 14th, 2020 : After US Dept of State guidance, US Embassy in India gave additional guidance telling that they are aware of the Court Order, but they cannot accommodate all the request due to COVID-19 situation and they request anyone with urgent need to submit Emergency US Visa Appointment Request . They say they may not approve EA for everyone. This has nothing to do with court order, but their capacity with the COVID situation. See below update on their website.

Updated Guidance US Visa Stamping - India October 2020
Updated Guidance US Visa Stamping – India October 2020

October 9, 2020 : Today US Dept of State gave additional guidance clarifying their generic guidance that they issued on Oct 2nd. Under the new clarification from today, you are exempt from the Proclamation or EO of H1B, L1, other visas travel ban, only if you are the plaintiff ( parties who put up the lawsuit) in the court case that was lost by Dept of State on Trump Travel Ban for H1B, L1, Others.

The named plaintiffs are :

  • The National Association of Manufacturers
  • The US Chamber of Commerce
  • The National Retail Federation
  • TechNet
  • Intrax, Inc.

If your company is a member of the above organizations, then you can apply for H1B, L1 or J1 visa stamping at Consulate and travel to US.

As per the guidance, your company need to get a letter from one of these organization confirming the membership. You would need to submit the letter for emergency appointment and also a copy of the same at the US visa interview to US Consulate officer. Also, if the dependents like H4 and L2 would also be able to leverage this, if the principal spouse’s company is a member of one of these plaintiff organization.

If your company is not a member, the attorney’s who won the lawsuit are advising the companies to join one of these organizations and it costs about $250. So, if you are stuck, worth asking your employer to check on this and become a member of these plaintiff organizations.

Below is the actual screenshot of the same. You can check the Official State Dept Guidance

US Dept of State - Trump Travel ban H1B - October 2020 Update
US Dept of State – Trump Travel ban H1B – October 2020 Update

October 2, 2020 : As many of you know recently Judge Blocked Trump’s H1B Entry Ban. The tricky part with the court order is that, it applied to only plaintiffs ( parties who put up the lawsuit) in the court case. We all were waiting for guidance from US Department of State.

Today, US Department of State gave guidance on the same indicating that they are not going to apply Trump Travel Ban Proclamation ( Executive Order) for scheduling Emergency Appointments at Consulates. They say that each of the consulates and embassies in the respective countries will give further guidance. We need to further wait for specific details on how they will handle.

One thing to note is that, US Dept of State Guidance does not explicitly tell in the news alert that they will only give H1B, L1 visa emergency appointments to only parties, who were part of the Lawsuit. So, we can assume that it will be applicable to everyone and there is no Restriction for Visa Stamping or Travel ban anymore for all H1B, L1 and other visa holders. One of the reason they may have made it general for everyone is that the orgainzations that were part of the lawsuit have many thousands of companies as members and it will be hard for DHS/ State Dept verify and give only to such parties.

Below is the exact guidance from them. You can read official alert at : US Dept of State News

US Dept of State - Trump Travel ban guidance Proclamation October
US Dept of State – Trump Travel ban guidance Proclamation October

Update : US State Dept Clarifies – H4, L2 Visa Stampings

August 12th, 2020 : Today USCIS announced many more changes and exceptions for H1B, L1 and other Visa holders. They have given exceptions for employees already working in US on Extensions, and given criteria to qualify for other. We have created a detail article on this. Check out. New Exceptions to get US Visa, Entry H1B, L1 – Aug 2020

Jul 17th, 2020 : Today US State Department updated their previous press release and gave more clarifications. Below are the updates for H1B, L1, H4, L2 visas.

  • There were confusions in the past that said, if H1B or L1 holder was in US and their H1B or L1 visa has expired, then H4 or L2 may or may not go for stamping. Also, another confusion was, if the H1B or L1 holder had visa and in home country, can their spouse may or may not visa stamping. Today’s update clarifies both.
  • As per new clarification, if you are H4 or L2 spouse, you can go for Visa stamping in two situations.
    • As long as your spouse is in US (even with expired US, but with valid status like valid I-797, I-94)
    • If they have valid H1B Visa in their passport ( they do not have to be in US). See below screenshot. from press release.
  • They also clarified saying that H1B holders and L1 holders, who work on public health related areas or research on the same, they can get stamping and travel to US. Also, if H1B holder work for Govt agency’s IT support/services, they can get exceptions for stamping too. See below screenshot.
  • See below screenshot from State Depart website. Check Official Press Release – State.Gov
H1B - L1 - H4 L2 J2 Visa Stamping Clarification Jul 17

July 16th, 2020 : US State Department issued a clarification today on the H4, L2 and J2 visas and others. Below are the details

  • Dept of State will continue to issue Visas for H4, L2 and J2 visa holders, if they are not part of the Executive Order / Proclamation or if the principal Applicant is in the US. Which means, if H1B or L1 visa holder in US and their spouse is outside of US, then they will be issued visas. This clarification comes just couple of days after the Lawsuit was filed Challenging H1B, H4 entry Ban
  • Also exceptions for H, J visa holder who support US interests like COVID response, or traveling as per US Govt.
  • Lastly, if the applicants are subject to aging out of their current immigrant visa before their passport expires or within 2 weeks after it expires.
US State Depart Clarification of H L and J Visas Entry
US Dept of State Clarification on H4, L2 and J2 visa stampings

You may watch below YouTube Video that covers the same

Update : Clarification on Non-immigrant Visa Clause

June 29th, 2020 : Today, WhiteHouse gave an amendment to their Proclamation that Trump Signed to ban entry of H1B, H4 and others, clarifying that it applies only to visa holders such as H1B, H4, H2B, L and certain J visas that are part of the proclamation. Below is what it used to look before and after.

There have been confusions with some saying it is banned for F2, K1 and other visa and mis-information. In light of all confusions, to make it clear, they issued an amendment clarifying the same. It does not change any of the entry ban list of Visa types or categories that were part of the original proclamation. Still all the restrictions on Travel entry and Stampings apply. Read US Entry Ban, Visa Stamping – Official Guidance by USCIS, Consulates, State Dept.

Trump H1B Entry Ban Amendment

You may watch below video as well on the update

Why Trump Executive Order to ban Entry of H1B, L1, other visas ?

The executive order states that US unemployment is at one of the highest levels of 13.3% and with the slow economic recovery, allowing entry of foreign workers and their spouses will create additional competition to US citizens to find a job.

Trump EO – Entry Ban for H1B, H4, L1, L2, J1, others.  

As we discussed in our Fact Check on Executive Order Power of President, most of the things in the Executive order apply to people currently outside of United States and without a valid Visa.  The non-immigrant visa holders impacted are H1B, H4, H2B, L1, L2, J1 and also Immigrant Visa holders entering US. Let’s look each of these categories in detail.

EO Impact for H1B Visa Holders

The Executive Order (EO) will impact all H1B Visa holders outside of US and who do not have valid H1B Visa stamping in their passport ( Sample US Visa Stamp ). It does not matter, if you are New H1B seeker, who filed in H1B 2021 Season or an someone who already had H1B and worked in US. If you do not have valid visa on your passport as of today June 22, 2020, you will not able to enter US until Dec 31, 2020.

It will NOT impact any H1B holder within US. They can continue to file H1B Transfers, Extensions or Amendments. It does not impact anyone picked in H1B registration lottery this year and filing H1B petition with USCIS for FY 2021 season, it is just that they cannot enter US until this travel ban is lifted. If you leave US and do not have valid US visa, then you cannot re-enter. This even applies to anyone in US trying to extend I-94 by exiting the country.

EO Impact for H4 Visa Holders.

Updated July 16th, 2020 : Based on clarification from US state Department

As per the executive order text, it says “any alien accompanying or following to join such alien”. So, it says H4 and Dependents as blanket. Initially, there were confusions created as the State Dept Twitter account and consulates started telling they cannot stamp any H4 Visa holder. It was clarified on July 16th press release.

The signed executive order only applies to certain H4 Visa holders, who are outside of US and do not have a valid H4 Visa stamp in their passport and if their spouse is not in the US. As per the new guidance on July 16th, H4 Visa holder, who have their spouse in the US on H1B can apply for H4 visa stamping at consulate and get stamping done. They can return to US using the stamping.

Also, it will NOT impact any H4 holder currently in the US with their spouse. It does not impact them from applying H4 EAD and working in the US, if they are eligible.  H4 holders are free to apply for extensions or Change of status as needed, including EADs( if eligible).

You can join Telegram Group H1B, H4, L1, Travel Ban Help to discuss and help each other as community.

EO Impact for L1A, L1B, L2 Visa Holders

The Trump executive order signed today impacts all L1A, L1B and certain L2 dependents (spouse and children), who are outside of US and do not have a valid US visa stamp in their passport.  If you do not have the valid L1 or L2 visa stamp in your passport, you cannot enter US until Dec 31st, 2020.

Update July 16, 2020 : US state department clarified on July 16th, 2020 saying that L2 visa holders without a stamp in passport and if primary L1 visa holder in US, then they can apply for L2 stamping. Previously, it was told by them on Twitter that all L2s cannot get stamping, but this was clarified in press release.

It will not have any impact on the L1A, L1B or L2 visa holders, who are already in the US. They are free to file Extensions or Change of status as needed.  If you are on L2 and have EAD, you can continue to work and extend your EAD and L2 as well.

EO Impact for H2B and Dependent H4 Holders

The executive order applies to H2B visa holders and their Dependent spouses and children on H4 visa, who are outside of US and do NOT have valid visa stamp to enter US. This will last until Dec 31, 2020. It will not apply to anyone on H2B, H4 visa status and already in US. They are free to work, continue to extend as eligible or file COS as applicable.

EO Impact for J1, J2 Visa Holders

The executive order bans entry of J1 visa holders who outside of US and do not have valid J1 visa stamp as of today and planning to participate as an intern, trainee, teacher, camp counselor, Au Pair or Summer work travel program. It also includes their accompanying spouses and children of J1 visa holders.   Also, it was clarified on July 16th by State Department that J2 visa holders are eligible to get stamping and fly to US, if their principal applicant on J1 is in US.

You may watch the below YouTube Video, it has the summary of entire article.

EO for new Immigrants / new GC holders

The Executive order extends the previous 60 days Executive order banning entry of Immigrant Visa (new GC) holders and it will be extended until end of the year, which is December 31st, 2020. All the exceptions for health care workers and others that are outlined in that previous order will continue to apply.

EO Ban Impact for F1 Visa, OPT, STEM OPT Holders

The executive order signed today does not have any impact on the F1 Student Visa holders. If you are an F1 student trying to enter US for Fall 2020, you are fine to enter US. If you are an OPT or STEM OPT holder in US, you can continue to work on OPT and STEM OPT, there is no impact.  You can apply for OPT, CPT and STEM OPT as normal and this executive order does not have any impact on such visa holders. Also, if you are planning to apply for F1 visa to enter US for Fall 2020, you are free to apply as well, this does not impact you.

EO Ban Impact on TN, B1/B2, E3, O1, other Visas

The EO singed today does not have any impact on other visas like TN, B1/B2, E2, O1 or other visa types. You are free to apply for such visas or enter US on such visas. There are no restrictions as well to apply for petitions related to these visas with USCIS.

EO impact on Adjustment of Status, I-140, PERM

The executive order does not have any impact on the filing of any form or petition with USCIS like I-140 or Adjustment of Status using I-485. Also, you can go through PERM process as well, just that there will be more scrutiny with higher unemployment rate.

Those are the key parts of the executive order, see summary table below.

Summary of the Trump Executive order entry Ban in Table

Below table is updated as of October 14, 2020

Visa TypeLocationUS Visa Stamp, StatusImpact – Dec 31, 2020
H1B VisaOutside USNo H1B StampCannot enter US
Exception – part of Lawsuit tied to court order
H1B VisaOutside USHas Valid H1B StampNo impact
H1B VisaInside USValid I-797, I-94No impact
H4 VisaOutside US
( H1B spouse outside US)
No H4 StampCannot enter US
Exception – part of Lawsuit tied to court order
H4 Visa
(Jul 16 update)
Outside US
(H1B holder in US)
No H4 StampCan get H4 Stamping, enter US
H4 VisaOutside USHas Valid H4 StampNo impact
H4 VisaInside USValid I-797, I-94No impact
H4 EADInside USValid EADNo impact
L1, L2 VisaOutside USNo L1, L2 StampCannot enter US
Exception – part of Lawsuit tied to court order
L1, L2 VisaOutside USHas Valid L1, L2 StampNo impact
L1, L2 VisaInside USValid I-797, I-94No impact
L2 EADInside USValid EADNo impact
H2B VisaOutside USNo H2B StampCannot enter US
Exception – part of Lawsuit tied to court order
H2B VisaOutside USHas Valid H2B StampNo impact
H2B VisaInside USValid approval, I-94No impact
F1, F2 VisaAnywhereDoes not matterNo impact
OPT, STEM OPTAnywhereDoes not matterNo impact
J1 VisaOutside USNo J1 StampCannot enter US
Exception – part of Lawsuit tied to court order
J1 VisaOutside USValid J1 StampNo impact
J1 VisaInside USValid status documentsNo impact
B1, B2AnywhereDoes not matterNo impact
TN,O1, E3AnywhereDoes not matterNo Impact
Filing USCIS Forms, DOL ProcessImpact
I-140, I-485 (AOS)No Impact
I-129 (H1B or L1 Transfers, COS, Extensions )No Impact
I-765 (EAD Applications)No impact
All other forms with USCIS, Biometrics, InterviewsNo impact

Exceptions for Travel Entry Ban for Non-immigrants

Below categories of Individuals are exempted from the Travel ban

  • Green Card Holders ( Lawful Permanent Residents )
  • Spouse or child of US citizens
  • Any foreigner seeking to enter US for temporary labor or services for US food supply chain.
  • Anyone whose entry is of national interest as determined by Consulate or State Dept.
  • It does not apply to asylum seekers or refugees and others who fall under similar circumstances.

In addition to the above executive order, president Trump also announced the below for further action by USCIS, Dept of Labor. Some of these have been there on their agenda, now they will push hard for these changes due to the economy.

Merit Based US Immigration System – H1B Program Changes

Update from Jul 11, 2020 : Trump indicated in press releases that he plans to sing a Merit Based Immigration Bill / Executive Order

In the past Trump announced high level info on Point Based US Immigration System that is Merit driven, but it never went anywhere. Now, today they announced that they will plan to move to a Merit-Based Immigration System.  It will prioritize highest skilled workers and protect American jobs with below changes to H1B system

  • Reform H1B Visa program
  • Prioritize H1B workers with Highest wage to make sure highest skilled applicants are admitted
  • Fix the loopholes in the immigration and work visa programs to replace American workers

The changes to the program are not part of the Executive Order, it will be carried out by the respective agency such as USCIS and Department of Labor for the respective Changes. We need to wait and see, how it will impact. These are already part of Trump’s Unified Agenda from Fall 2019.

Latest News Updates on Trump Travel Ban for H1B, H4

Common FAQs

When does the Executive order start entry Ban for H1B ?

It will be effective from 12:01 EST, June 24th, 2020. The previous executive order for immigrants visas will continue to be in effect as before.

Does it apply for Dropbox US Visa Stamping ?

It was applicable for Dropbox in the beginning. Later in the year, they relaxed some rules and now allow H1B, H4 and other visa renewals and extended the dropbox to 24 months for eligibility.

Are the H1B, L1 program changes immediate ?

No, they will take time. It is just indicated by Trump that they will be reformed to protect American workers.

Is H4 EAD still valid ?Can I apply, extend ?

Yes, there is nothing that is stopping you from applying for H4 EAD as per the Executive Order. We have H4 EAD lawsuit going on at the moment and we are waiting for court and OMB.  

Use H1B Stamp from previous Employer to enter US ?

Yes, you can use your previous employer stamping to enter, as long as it is valid on the day of your entry. Check do I need new H1B stamp after transfer ?

Is H1B Entry ban going to last after Dec 31st, 2020 ?

We do know at this point. It may get extended as per situation. Too early to predict.

It is a huge blow to many stuck in their home countries with pending stamping and many with dreams to work in US from Oct 2020.

What do you think of the Executive Order ? Share your thoughts in comments ?

Reference : Official WhiteHouse EO – Ban H1B, L, J, Entry  and  H1B Immigration Changes


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Comments ( 234 )

  1. Adil Sahab

    Thanks so much for the information in this post. Hoping you can help me with the below question?

    I have stamped visa of employer(A) in my passport valid till sep 2021.I changed my employer(A) to (B) on February and my I797 and I94 for (B) was approved in march 2020. Because of project issues i had to move to employer(C), my I797 and I94 for (C) was approved in sep 2020. I was in US the whole year and still is.

    Can I apply for dropbox in India and travel there next month and get my visa stamped for employer(C) and travel back to US?

    Thanks in advance.

    1. Nick Josh

      If you were in US on June 22, 2020, you will not be subject to PP10052 visa ban. As long as you meet eligibility criteria for dropbox, you will not have any issues with getting a dropbox appointment and new visa. Dropbox criteria is below, and is indepedent of employer or change in employer/sponsorer. Be sure to get the dropbox appointment first, before you book travel as appointments are limited and scarce. All international travelers inbound to India are subject to 7-day mandatory institutional quarantine at government facilities or hotels at traveler’s expense. Please plan accordingly. I would definitely recommend avoiding any non-essential, non-emergency travel.
      Eligibility for dropbox (Interview waiver):

  2. Irfan

    I received my Petition last year valid for3 years ( till Sept 2022).

    Interview Date: January End Days, 2020
    Embassy: Islamabad, Pakistan
    Application Status: Administrative Processing (AP) – No RFE asked till today
    Case Last Update Date: Same as Interview Date

    Can you please confirm if the applications like mine are still valid?
    What happens after December 31, 2020? Will my case be in the AP queue to be worked upon or any else?

  3. Prasadakumar

    Hi Kumar,
    Thanks for the information in this post.

    I changed my employer(A) to (B) in April 2020 and my I797 and I94 was approved in May 2020(before EO). My employer A visa has expired in September 2020.

    Can I go to India or Canada and get new h1b stamped?
    Am I eligible for dropbox?

    Thanks in advance.

    1. administrator

      if you were in US on the day of proclamation, you should be eligible as it is same visa type. Before you make your travel plans, you try out online and book dropbox. If the system allows, then good. If not, you can stay back. Also, write to consulate, they will confirm too.

      1. Prasadakumar

        Thank You for the quick response.

        I thought all h1b visa stamping were blocked till 31 dec. Was this rule updated on 12 Aug proclamation?

  4. Ismail Vandeliwala


    My current H1b expired on Aug 31, 2020. H1b extension was approved on May 22, 2020 before the EO.

    Will I able to travel to India before 31st Dec 2020 and get visa stamped?

      1. Sumit


        Does it mean any petition approved before June 24 2020 (EO) can travel to India and get Visa stamped even before 31st Dec 2020?


        1. administrator

          If you were in US on the day of proclamation, you are technically exempted. You can write to the consulates to be clear.

  5. swap

    My h1b petition ( counselor) filed in 2019 has been approved after almost 1.5 year. The approval is valid til 9/5/22. Looking at the present corona situation and executive order I can not go for the stamping till 31 dec 2020 and may be beyond that of it is extended further. My opt is valid till 11 Dec 2020. So what are my options apart from applying for COS amendment ?. Can I file for the cos extension before getting the h1b stamped if I find a new job. Or do I need a stamp before I apply for extension or transfer.

      1. swap

        Hi Kumar,

        My employer is not ready to amend it as the project is getting over in next month. They are looking for a new project but can I just look for a new employer and transfer the H1b if it is the first H1b and not stamped. Thanks in advance.

  6. Vinay

    I am working in USA with valid J1 visa and documents. I recently married in Feb and wife wife is stuck in India, Can she get ta fresh J2 visa as per latest amendments on visa ban ?
    Thank you.

  7. Ashwini Aditya Ram

    My husband has a valid L1 visa ( 15- Jan -2021) and is in US. Currently his company is applying for premium extension. Once he gets his approval. Can i apply for an L2 visa before 31- Dec-2020. I’m currently based in India

      1. Ashwini Aditya Ram

        Thanks kumar .Just to reconfirm i dont have an existing L2 visa it would be a new visa .Would i still be elgible to apply before dec 31st

  8. E


    I am an Irish citizen with a H1b visa and I am working for a US company in New York (in the IT field) . On March 17th I fled the city back to Ireland. I am still workign for the US company from Ireland.

    Am I allowed to fly back in ? I was told that its only allowable for certain sectors

    1. administrator

      No, you can fly back, as long as you have valid H1B visa stamp on your passport. There is no restriction based on sector now.

      1. Sharon Cunningham

        Yes there is …. if your in Ireland you cannot fly to the US you will need to travel to a country where there are no restrictions IE …. Mexico and stay there for 15 days then fly to the US …

        They will not allow you to travel … don’t waste your money …

        See the travel ban restrictions …

  9. Ellen


    I am currently in the United States on a H1B visa working for a company and want to go back to my home country to visit my family but I’m scared they won’t let me come back into the US again. I would be out of the country for 1,5 week and I would have a job to get back to. I already have the visa in my passport and it’s valid for another year.

    1. administrator

      As long as you have valid H1B Visa on your passport and have all the documents and everything in place, you are fine to exit and re-enter. There is no reason to worry, unless there is something wrong with the company you work for…

  10. Mariana

    I have H4 valid stamp, my husband is H1B, and we are in USA right now. my daughter is US citizen. Can I travel to my home country for a family emergency and re-entry USA after that?

  11. HariKrishna

    Hi Kumar,

    I am currently in USA and have valid H1B Visa stamped in my passport (Validity until 2022). I have plans to travel to india in Oct/Nov for my marriage.

    1) After the marriage can my spouse apply for H4 visa immediately ? (Provided US Consulates open at least by Oct/Nov time-frame).
    2) Since i have valid H1b visa stamped does it matter where i am physically present (USA/India) while my spouse applies for her H4 Visa during Oct/Nov?

    1. administrator

      1. Yes.
      2. No, it does not matter. They clarified it recently that if you have stamp, your spouse can get stamping done.

  12. Pranita

    Hello Kumar and All,
    I will really appreciate if you guys can share your experiences on below questions-

    1- Did anybody travel from Canada to US on expired h1b visa using Auto visa revalidation after travel ban?

    2- Did anybody try h1b stamping in Canada after travel ban?

    Thanks in advance.

    1. administrator

      1. I have not seen anyone update in the forum or groups.
      2. No, it seems the essential travel is not open, so no option to go or schedule.
      Do update from your side, if any new updates for community benefit.

  13. JB

    Hello Kumar/Everyone,

    I got my first H1B visa stamped in Feb, 2020. But I couldn’t travel due to covid restrictions. Visa is valid upto Sept, 2022.

    Can I enter US first time on H1B status before Dec, 2020?

    Thanks in advance.

  14. Rohit

    I have I-797 which is valid till 31-Dec-2020, and was not able to stamp visa due to ongoing pandemic situation. After us entry ban what will the impact. Can I apply for extention of I-797 validity or need to go through lottery again in next year when this ban is revoked.

        1. administrator

          You do not need to be in US for that. The only thing is that, it will be applied in Consular processing as you are NOT in US.


    Hi Kumar,

    Was working in tech on a H1B and was recently laid off by the firm

    Couldn’t find new employer so I applied for COS (before end of grace period) from H1B to F1 as I’m taking studies
    The COS will take about 6-10 months, and I’m waiting for an answer from USCIS
    I haven’t exited the USA since last year.

    If I find a new employer, can I reapply to H1B?
    Can I then do a Change of status from F1 to H1B without exiting the US?
    Please take note that I’m a Canadian citizen (Toronto)

    1. administrator
      No, you may not be able to do it until your F1 is approved. The reason is, technically you do not have status now and you need valid status to move to another status.


        Hi, thanks for your reply and help, I understand your point.

        I should be able to speed up to transfer to F1 by driving to Canada and get my F1 at the border, and then reenter the US.

        Once I have a valid F1 status in the US, can I then apply to jump back on my H1B with a new employer?
        Can it be done with premium processing and then COS F1 to H1B?

        Thanks so much for your help!


          TO ALL CANADIANS!!: very important, canadians are exempt from the new Trump Ban.

          Hi Kumar, really appreciate your help, would you mind helping me with the last 5 questions below:

          1) I only used 2 years on my H1B with previous employer, can I still use this H1B with a new employer for another 4 years?

          2)If yes, with the ban, is it still possible to file an application to jump back on H1B(without lottery)?

          3) Can I file the application even if I have a COS (H1B to F1) pending?

          4)Would this new application be considered a H1B transfer or a H1B new application ( I’m no longer in grace period)?

          5) Can the application be done using premium processing, and how soon can I start working?

          Thank you so much for your help

          1. administrator

            1. Yes, you can. Check Recapture H1B unused Rules
            2. Yes, you can file it with USCIS. Only thing is you cannot enter US on H1B, if you do not have stamping.
            3. Well, discuss with attorney. If your I-94 is valid, you maybe able to withdraw one, file other in premium. But, if expired, then cannot do it…You need valid status for transfer.
            4. Transfer.
            5. Yes. If you are not in legal status now, you cannot work right away…

  16. MadeMyMark

    Thanks for this helpful article.
    If I currently do not have a valid J1 visa stamp AND am outside the US,
    can I get into the US through B-2 (tourist) visa and then apply for a J1 visa stamp once within the US?

    I have an internship offer from a university but currently unsure of how to get myself into the US. Could you provide some suggestions? It would be greatly appreciated.


    1. administrator

      Well, this is tricky and can be risky…They look at the intent of your entry as well, so entering a country with an intent to do COS to J1 is not allowed.

  17. SSnav

    I currently work for university/ medical center as research scientist under H1B. Can my wife, currently outside US without H4 stamp on her passport, get H4 approved at US consulate after resuming services, under ‘national interest’ exception?

  18. Rajani bhaskar

    Hi Kumar,

    First of all I would like to thank you & your team for all the good work you guys are doing by helping people like me. God bless you all.

    Coming to my query, I quit my full time job at company A during Jan 2019 and travelled back to India due to some family commitment. I have a valid stamped visa from company A till March 2021.
    I would like start working in USA again. I’m currently not working in India, can I transfer my visa to any new company in USA and travel to USA on my old stamping before dec 2020?
    One option would be to rejoin my old company if at all they take me back.
    Is it possible to get new stamping at Mexico or Canada ?

    Kindly look into my above queries. Appreciate your valuable time.

    Thank you

  19. Sharon Cunningham

    My husband has a l1 visa and has been in the us since September 2018, he came back in March for a visit and has been here in the uk since then due to the pandemic . He tried to check in to return back to the us today but was denied as he didn’t have a green card ..

    He works over in the US and has a rented apartment …

    Advice would be a great help .

  20. Arya

    I have a valid H1B, am in US. My husband has I140 approved , I was planning to apply for H4 and H4 EAD.
    Will the EO impact the application? Can i go for COS from H1 to H4 in USA. Im not planing to travel outside US for this Year

  21. Vasanti Telikicharla

    My dependents have valid visa till July 31, 2020. I have applied for H1B extension here and its approved. Since the ban doesnt allow new visa stamping, can my dependents travel in July? Or can it be a problem for travel as they won’t be having minimum 1 month valid visa?

  22. J. Joseph

    I have a valid L1A visa stamped on my passport. I’m currently outside the US waiting for my visa appointment for my H1b visa extension. Is possible to use the L1A visa to enter the US? For my H1b, is it possible to change from consular stamping to COS while in the US?

  23. Krishna

    Hi during this ban will USCIS still accept h1b petitions with a start date of January 2021? I have an approved I140 for more than 6 months and am in India now.

  24. Evans Yaw

    USCIS approved my case of 28th April 2020, I have all my documents from my employer and attourney. I was only waiting for embassies to resume to apply visa stamping, can I travel this year?

  25. Moni

    I understand stamping will be done only after year end.

    But meanwhile can we expect USCIS in other places in India, will continue to work on the pending administrating(RFE) processing cases and l will they notify us on the status ? In this way we can know the status of our visa and save time.

    Or, is it that USCIS will not even start on RFEs as well unitl DEC?

    1. Kapil

      that makes sense, they should atleast continue to work on pending rfes/221g cases, but based on what I have been hearing/reading so far, they won’t.

  26. Neetu Gangwani


    I have a valid L1B visa till July 2022. I am currently in US and my partner is in India he already applied for L2 dependent visa but due to lockdown visa is on hold.

    My question is can I visit to India for few months or I won’t get entry if I leave the country.

      1. Krish

        please ignore my previous comments, since your visa is already stamped on passport and is valid so you should be fine, but your partner may not enter since doesn’t have any valid stamped already.

  27. Anvesha

    Hi Kumar,

    I am currently on my OPT and it expires in July. I applied for a change of status to H4 and applied for H4 EAD in February (2nd week). The biometric step is also done. I am currently in the USA. My husband just got his H1B renewed in January. What does this current order mean for me? Will USCIS stop processing my visa and EAD?

    Thank you.

  28. John

    I have got my H1B stamped in January 2021. I have never been to US on the H1.

    Does this ban is applicable if a person never travel to US

    1. Krish

      As long as your employer/client/project/location are same as your visa stamped, you should be totally fine. But make sure your point of entry is local to your work location.

    1. H1B_this_year

      No. As per this Executive Order, one cannot get any new visa stamped from outside US till the ban is lifted. (Please note – I am NOT a lawyer and this is my personal opinion only).

  29. Suvi

    My Husband is in USA with stamped visa. I was planning to apply for H4 visa but will not be able to due to new announcement. I want to visit him. I have a approved H1B Petition with stamping pending which is again not possible until Dec 2020. Is it advisable to apply for visitor visa to visit my spouse as there is no restriction there.

    1. H1B_this_year

      Technically yes. However, given the current restrictions, situation and trend, getting a B2 visa might not be easy. (Please note – I am NOT a lawyer and this is my personal opinion only).

  30. Praveen

    Hi, My H1B lottery picked for FY 21 and I have two child those were born in US ( 2& 4 years kids). this order applicable for me? If its not applicable what i do further?

    1. H1B_this_year

      This order will not affect your ongoing petition application processing. However, if approved, you will not be able to get the visa stamped from outside US (based on the approved petition) until the ban is lifted. (Please note – I am NOT a lawyer and this is my personal opinion only).

  31. ajay

    I m selected in this year H1B lottery and my employer have submitted the petition also last week . What would be the impact on my visa they will reject this year petition? I am in india only

    1. H1B_this_year

      This will not have any impact in your application for this year. However, if approved, you will not be able to get your visa stamped from outside US until the ban is lifted. (Please note – I am NOT a lawyer and this is my personal opinion only).

  32. Da_freak

    What abt Canadian citizens trying to enter after june 24 on renewed H4 visa (approved this year)? Visas to Canadian citizens are only stamped at US border.

    1. H1B_this_year

      If you have a valid US visa on your passport, then this order is not applicable to you and you should be able to enter US. (Please note – I am NOT a lawyer and this is my personal opinion only).

      1. Da_freak

        Do you know how does the H1b work (or any visa) for Canadian citizens? There is no such thing as visa (or stamp) on passport.

        1. H1B_this_year

          Yes, you are correct. For Canadian citizens, it might be different. And from the Executive Order, it is not very clear whether you will be allowed to enter post June 24th. You may want to check and confirm with someone who is legally competent and authorized in this context. (Please note – I am NOT a lawyer and this is my personal opinion only).


    I have a Valid I-797, I-94 and I’m in the US , My stamp is expired and my plan is to get new one in August 2020. Now with this new release looks like If I leave there is no come back for me. However, My wife is an American citizen and she is going to travel with me. I never filed for a green card through her because my H1B is relatively new and we had plans to file later this year because we both are too busy now and we want to go through all forms and fill them out together. We did file tax jointly . Does anyone have a good advice for my case ???

    1. administrator

      well, you may or may not have challenges to get stamping. As you are exempt with your spouse being US Citizen…Sometimes, it can be tricky. Talk to Consulate before you travel and make sure they process, before you jump on a plane. Try to see, if there is a way to apply for your GC inside US and avoid travel. Also, talk to your attorney as well.

  34. PK

    Was working under OPT and got the H-1B approval this February (I-797). Obliviously my F-1 visa is expired and I don’t have the h-1b stamping yet. Since I am working in US with valid I-797 can I go back to my country and get the stamp and come back?


  35. Abc

    Hi My Marriage is scheduled in India by August and I have my h1b till May 2021. Will there be any issues if I travel to India and will I be able to return back?


  36. Ram Sharma

    I have a valid petition of H1b, and waiting for consulate to open. Can i apply for a visa stamp ? will they give visa?

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