H1B Renewal While Adjustment of Status is Pending

I am now in an H1B status and it will expire in a month. I already filed an I-485 adjustment of status and my I-140 after the I-140 was approved. I also have an EAD card which is valid for another 9 months and I know I can extend it. Do I still need to extend my H1B visa?

It is likely in your best interest to extend your H1B unless you have already used your EAD to work for a different employer. If, for some reason, your I485 is denied, it is good to have your H1B as a backup. Otherwise you would be out of status if the I485 were denied.

Notice of Intent to Revoke H1B Visa

Hi, I was previously your client. You got my first H1B approved and then I had another firm apply for my current H1B. I recently got a notice of intent to revoke my H1B and I’m started to freak out! I last entered on an H1B that expires in a month and my I94 is now expired. Can you fix this for me?

Yes, we can absolutely help you. We can respond to the NOID with USCIS and take you to CBP and have them issue a new I94 for you. While there will be risks involved, I feel we have a very good chance of getting you through this.

H1B Visa Application while I-140 NIW is Pending

I’m currently on OPT and I just got a job offer. The company is willing to sponsor me for an H1B visa. I have a pending I-140 through NIW. Can I apply for an H1B visa while my I-140 is pending.

Certainly. An H1B Visa allows the applicant to have both immigrant and nonimmigrant intent so you may apply and obtain an H1B visa while you have a green card application pending.

O1 Visa Self Sponsorship

I would like to know if it is possible to incorporate my own company to sponsor me for a O1 visa? I spoke to one lawyer and was told I can sponsor myself as long as I have strong reference/creential letters. Another lawyer I spoke with told me that I cannot incorporate on my own and self-sponsor. So who’s right?

While it is true that O1 visa beneficiaries cannot self-sponsor, if the position is one that traditionally involves self-employment, you may be sponsored by a US agent rather than an employer. Moreover, USCIS has recently taken a tough stance against self sponsorship in the H1B visa area and is likely taking a strong stance against other visa types. It would be risky to self sponsor in this environment but a case could be made and even approved. They certainly have been in the past.

Change of Status From J1 Visa to H1B Visa in the US

Hi, I have a J1 visa and am a trainee with a Hotel. I want to change to a work visa like H1B but my J1 sponsor told me that I can’t change to H1B. Why is that? Do I need a J1 waiver? My paperwork says that I am not subject to the home residency requirement.

Regardless of what your paperwork reads (the J1 visa or the DS-2019), you may still be subject to the two year home residency requirement. However, if you are not subject then there is no restriction on applying to change your status to H1B or other visa type regardless of what your program sponsor tells you. Most program sponsors do not want people to change their status in the US because they believe, incorrectly, that they may lose their ability to sponsor J1s if too many J1 visa holders do not return to their home country.

Employment During a Change of Status From H1B Visa to O1 Visa

I am a physician from India. I currently have an H1B with my current employer and I have a pending O1 visa application with another employer. My lawyer told me that when my H1B expires that I can continue to work as long as my O1 application is pending. Is that right?

No, that is not right. Once your H1B expires, you will have to wait for the O1 to be approved. You may remain in the US pending the adjudication of the O1 but you are not authorized to work. I recommend filing an application for premium processing as soon as possible.

H1B Visa Extension Beyond the Six Year Limitation

I’m currently working with a H1B and it will expire soon so I can get a extension? I already have 6 years as H1B and I have labor certificate and my company filed I-140. Can I get a extension?

Yes, you will be able to extend beyond the 6-year limitation. A Section 106(a) extension allows extensions in one year increments where you have a labor certification/PERM, I-140 or employment based adjustment application filed at least 365 days prior to the expiration of your current H1B visa status. In you case though, it would probably be in your best interest to premium process your I140 and get that approved. Then you qualify for a Section 104(c) extension which would allow you to obtain a three year H1B extension, provided that an immigrant visa is unavailable due to per country limitations.

H1B Visa Status Application While in the US on the Visa Waiver Program

I’m from Italy on visa waiver right now. My stay will expire at the end of September. I got an offer from a US company.  Can I stay here while my H1B is been processed?

Yes, you can remain in the US while your H1B visa is processed. However, persons who enter the US using the visa waiver program are not allowed to change their status in the US. So, while we can get USCIS to approve the H1B, you will need to go outside the US for H1B visa stamping. Then after you have obtained the H1B visa stamp, you will be able to return to the US and begin work.

H1B Visa for a Pastor

My Church applied my H1B for me as a Pastor. The Nebraska center just denied because they say that a Bachelor’s degree is not required for a Pastor. Is that true?

USCIS believes that there is a significant amount of fraud in religious worker visas and immigration has taken a hard line on these types of applications. That being said, it is quite common for a pastor position to require a BA or even an MDiv. Your denomination should have regulations for the requirements for pastor type positions and it shouldn’t be too difficult to evidence the requirements. Additionally, you likely qualify for an R1 visa and I recommend you contact my office to see if we can help you with an R1 or an appeal of you H1B denial.

How to Expedite a Form I-140 Appeal

My I-140 was denied for the skilled category. We filed an appeal but we don’t have a decision and I’m worried I’m going to lose my H1B because business is getting slow. Is it possible to expedite the appeal so I can get my green card?

In many cases where the Service Center misinterpreted the law or mistakenly construed the facts, we have been able to get the Service Center itself to reverse their opinion in only a couple months. In cases where the appeal goes to the AAO, we’re seeing processing times in the 12 -18 months range. We have had success in getting appeals expedited where there are extraordinary circumstances so we can help in getting a decision expedited for you.