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L1a To Out-of-cap H1b

Discussion in 'Nonimmigrant Visa Validity' started by VSK, Sep 16, 2014.

  1. VSK

    VSK New Member

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    Hi,
    I was in US for 4 years from 2005 to 2009 on H1B.
    I went back to my home country and stayed there till 2012.
    I came back to US on L1A (i have a total of 17 years of experience) and have been here from July 2012 onwards. My current employer may not process my GC.
    Questions:
    - Can I shift from L1A to H1B - does my current employer need to know when the change of status is applied for by my prospective employer?
    - Can I reclaim my 2 years of unused H1B visa as out-of-cap now? Or does a fresh out-of-cap 6 years start since I was away for > 1 year outside of US?
    - Can I also get a fresh H1B application going while I am on the old H1B?
    - How long can I stay on H1-B in US now? What will it take to help me continue to stay and work here - a GC process to be started by my new employer? At what point am I 'safe' and how long does that take?

    Thanks a ton for your help!
     
  2. Ron Gotcher

    Ron Gotcher Attorney at Law

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    You are subject to the cap. Your L time will count against your six years of H1B.
     
  3. VSK

    VSK New Member

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    Ron,
    I was told that since I spent 1 year outside of the US, I will be able to get back the previous 'unused' time on H1B. Isnt that true?
     
  4. Ron Gotcher

    Ron Gotcher Attorney at Law

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    Yes it is. When you returned, you were entitled to a new six year H interval. The law provides that all time spent in L status, however, must be counted against the maximum period of H stay.
     
  5. VSK

    VSK New Member

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    Thanks Ron - I am still a little confused, so let me ask this differently.
    1. Can I now get a simple change of status from L1A to H1B with a new employer and start working immediately on H1B OR do I need to wait for a new H1B and can hence work only from Oct, 2015?
    2. From your previous email, it looks like I will then have 4 years on the H1B. Is that right?
     
  6. Ron Gotcher

    Ron Gotcher Attorney at Law

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    You have to wait for the new quota since you are subject to the cap. When you go on it, all of your years of time in L status will be subtracted from the six year maximum.
     
    Swetha_p2009 likes this.
  7. VSK

    VSK New Member

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    Ron,
    Why am I not cap exempt?
    I was in H1 status till Feb, 2009, so 6 years have not elapsed since I held H1 status.
    Is it because I have been holding L1A status for the last 2 years?
     
  8. Ron Gotcher

    Ron Gotcher Attorney at Law

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    The USCIS has been allowing people to apply as cap exempt if they held H status within the last six years under certain circumstances. In your case (a) you were outside the U.S. for more than a year, and (b) your approval had expired while you were outside.
     
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  9. Swetha_p2009

    Swetha_p2009 New Member

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    Hi Ron - Can you please help me with further explanation on your above post?
    I worked on H1 from Oct 1st 2008 - Mar 1st 2010.
    I went to my home country and came back to US after couple of months on H4 visa. I have been on H4 visa since then.
    Would I be able to apply for cap-exempt H Visa, if I found a sponsoring company/Job right now??
    What are my options to be able to start working.
    My spouse's green card is in process and have been waiting for dates to become current to be able to file for i-485.

    Thank you so much for your time and effort for helping people like me.
     
  10. Ron Gotcher

    Ron Gotcher Attorney at Law

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    You get one or the other (cap exemption or a new six year interval) but not both.
     
  11. Eric Rowan

    Eric Rowan New Member

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    Yes, you can shift from L1A to H1B. The changing status from L1 to H1B visa is very simple.
     

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