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Immigration Issues/travel during H1b processing

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Question
I am a Canadian citizen residing and working in the US under an F1/OPT visa. I have received an offer from a company and they have agreed to sponsor me for an H1B and they say that they will submit the application in April, and that we are not to travel.

The issue is that I must return to Canada in early May and will return to the US by the end of June. I'm concerned about getting back into the US. Will my F1 still be valid during my adjustment to H1B? If the H1B is completed before I return to the US will that be a problem? I intend to cross the border by Car. What documents will I need to show to re-enter the US?
Thanks.

Answer
Hi Sarah,

You are legally able to travel on your unexpired F-1 visa. However, travel during the OPT period is not recommended even if you have never violated your F-1 status throughout your stay in the U.S. (for example, you have been a full-time student throughout), esp. if your OPT will expire soon after your entry back to the U.S.

If you still decide to travel, you must be ready to convince the immigration officer at the port-of-entry that the purpose of your entry back into the U.S. while on OPT is to continue in training for a particular company in the field which you have studied in college, and that you intend to depart the U.S. at the end of your OPT. Take your college transcript and diploma and all I-20(s) and EAD (OPT) card and evidence that you are training with a company in your field of study. Take a letter from the international student advisor as well confirming that you have been a full-time student, and are now following OPT guidelines.

Regards,
Ajay K. Arora, Esq.
www.h1b1.com

Immigration Issues

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Ajay K. Arora

Expertise

I can answer your questions on employment and family-based U.S. Immigration Law. Expertise in various immigration categories includes the following: H-1B, L-1, O-1, PERM (labor certification), EB-1 to EB-3 I-140 employment-based immigrant petitions, family or fiance(e) or spousal sponsorship, visa extension or change of status, adjustment of status, naturalization (citizenship), etc.

Experience

Ajay K. Arora attended Pennsylvania State University and the University of Wales at Swansea (United Kingdom), and earned his law degree at Temple University School of Law, Philadelphia, in 1993. Mr. Arora has practiced Immigration Law since graduation and is a member of the American Immigration Lawyers Association since 1995.

Organizations
American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA) full member since 1995.

Education/Credentials
Ajay K. Arora attended Pennsylvania State University and the University of Wales at Swansea (United Kingdom), and earned his law degree at Temple University School of Law, Philadelphia, in 1993. Mr. Arora has practiced Immigration Law since graduation and is a member of the American Immigration Lawyers Association since 1995.

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