The immigration laws and the INS regulations provide no guidance on how long a person may remain in the U.S. between H-1 B jobs. If you don't already have another H-1B employer lined up, you should immediately apply for H-4 status, and when you secure another offer of employment, change your status back to H-1 B.
That depends on many factors. For instance, the F-1 visa is not a dual intent visa. Therefore, if you are the beneficiary of a labor certification or of a visa petition, the INS would probably deny a change of status from H-1 B to F-1 on the grounds that you are an intending immigrant. On the other hand, some H-1 B visa holders may be eligible to change status to another dual intent category such as O-1.
Yes, you can.
That depends on where your job is located. Processing times vary from 15-30 days if you work in a state where the processing is done by the INS's Vermont Service Center. On the other hand, if your job is in California, the California Service Center typically takes up to four months to process an H-1 B petition.
Neither the law nor the regulations specify how long a person may remain in status without an employer, a cautious person will remain in job number one until the INS approves a change of employers to job number two. That said, give yourself a break and take a two- or three-week vacation between jobs.
When the employer is small, the INS may demand additional documentation (tax returns, etc.) for the employer to demonstrate its financial viability and its ability to pay the salary of the H-1 B employee. Under regulations yet to be issued by the Department of Labor, if a certain percentage of your employees are H-1 B visa holders, you will be subject to additional requirements including the requirement that you first seek a U.S. worker to fill a job opening before submitting a petition for an H-1 B employee.
Under INS regulations, once a person obtains H-1 B status, he or she has only a limited time to begin working for a petitioning employer. The employer and the employee should both have notice that the H-1 B petition, or change of status, has been approved.
If the U.S. citizen would like his/her spouse to obtain permanent residence in the U.S, they should immediately submit a combined visa petition and application for adjustment of status together with their H-1 B spouse. For more information about obtaining a green card through marriage, see this page. In the Spring of 1998, the Senate Bill (S. 1723) which would have raised the H-1 B cap for the next five years contained a section which would have effectively abolished country quotas in the employment-based preferenced categories. However, the House Bill contained no such provision. In the House-Senate Conference Committee, this provision of the Senate Bill was removed from the bill. Since the enactment of the law raising the H-1 B cap on October 21, 1998, no bill has been introduced in Congress that would eliminate per-country quotas. However, per- country quotas to be a relic of the past and favor the proposals of the Immigrant Support Network (please see http://www.isn.org) to eliminate country quotas.
No. The State Department regulations allow you to obtain an H-1B visa and enter the U.S. no more than 10 days before the beginning of the validity period on your approved petition.
There is no limit. I ear notice about one person who is working for three H-1B employers simultaneously.
An L-2 visa is not a working visa, however, if you apply for permanent residence after one year, both you, your wife and any unmarried children under 21 years of age will be able to obtain work cards.
Ideally, the largest, oldest and most well known employers are better. However, in the real world, as long as your petitioning employer can establish that is financially viable, you should have no problem. Avoid being sponsored by start-up companies operated out of your friends garage.
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