Immigration Issues/F1 to H1

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Question
Hi Robert,

Here are my questions :

1)I am on F1 visa right now and i am on my OPT. I will be applying for H1B for this year april 2008. I will be going for premium processing for my visa application. I would be hoping to get the approval and papers at the most by July. Then i have plans to go to Mexico for stamping. How soon can i go to Mexico for stamping?  Can i go as soon as i get my visa papers? or I need to wait until Sep 1 to go for stamping ? I am planning to go to India in the month of August and come back to US in september/october.I should have the stamped visa thro mexico's US consulate by that time. I dont want to get stamping in India. I need to get stamping only in Mexico.

2) Will they cancel my F1 as soon as i get my H1 stamping?Can i continue with F1 till october 1 ? When will the H1 be effective from ?

Let me know if i am not clear with the above questions.

Thanks
Shiva

Answer
First of all, there is no guarantee your application will be selected. There are only 65000 H-1 available per year and Immigration receives more than 65000 applications on 4/1. They do a lottery and if you are not chosen your application will be rejected.

Mexico may not agree to process your case or may interview you and tell you to go to your home country for stamping. They will not allow you to enter on H-1 until at least September, no matter how soon you go for stamping. The embassy may cancel your F-1 when they issue the H-1.

You are allowed to stay here in F-1 for up to 60 days past the expiration of your OPT.

Regards,

Robert

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