Immigration Issues/H1b Transfer

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Question
QUESTION: Hello Ajay,

My H1B visa got approved this year and will come into effect on Oct 1, 2011. Can I transfer to a new company before Oct 1 and if yes, what should I do to get it transfered to a new company? Or do I have to wait after Oct 1? In order to transfer H1B what is the procedure and what is the wait time to get it transferred.

Thanks,
J.

ANSWER: Hi,

The new company (Company B) will file an H1B petition requesting start date of Oct. 01. You will not be subject to the visa cap as you already have H1B approval through Company A. Co. B does not require the permission of Co. A in order to file the H1B petition. You  can have multiple H1B approval notices: www.h1b1.com/concurrent.htm

Co. B can file the H1B petition now. It does not have to wait until Oct. 01. It will take about 3 months for approval, but Co. B can file through premium processing, whereby the USCIS will make a decision within 15 days of filing. As H1B status is employer specific, you cannot work for Co. B in H1B status until approval. If the petition is approved prior to Oct. 01, but start date on H1B approval is Oct. 01, you cannot work in H1B status until Oct. 01.

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: Thank you Ajay for your quick reply. Can I hire an immigration lawyer to file my H1b transfer paperwork and pay for my premium processing etc. Offcourse this includes having company B sign on the paperwork too, but does the company need its own lawyers to do this or I can get my own lawyers. Which means is it mandatory for the company B to file for transfer paperwork via their own lawyers and pay for the visa transfer cost including premium processing?

Lastly will Co. A find out once Co.B or my lawyers file for my H1b transfer? This is because I am looking for a new job confidentially but if the H1b transfer doesn't work out or is denied, I want to remain in my current company.

Thanks a lot in advance.

J

Answer
Hi,

Any law firm can prepare the H1B petition. After the new employer signs it, the law firm will file the H1B petition with the USCIS. Our law firm provides a general idea of the required documents here: http://h1b1.com/files/faq.htm#Checklist but please send an email directly to info@h1b1.com so that we can send you a proposal for representation without obligation.

Your current company will not be aware of the filing of new H1B petition through another company. The USCIS will not contact your current company, and the H1B approval notice through the new company will be sent only to the new employer as well as the attorney retained for new H1B petition. If for some reason the new H1B petition is denied, you will continue to maintain H1B status through employment by the current company.  

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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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