Immigration Issues/L1 Extension and H1B

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Question
QUESTION: Hi,

I am working with company A with L1B. As my visa got expired, extension got filed and approved as well.

Meantime, with company B, my H1B initiated under 2012 cap. Currently, the visa in RFE response review status.

On coming January, I am going to India for my marriage vacation.
Now, I am not preferring to go with Company B. Is it possible to ignore the H1B visa completely.

Also advise, regardless of H1 status, shall I go with my L1B extension? And is there a way to check whether the H1 is filed as COS or CP.

Please help.

ANSWER: Hi,

You would need to see the Form I-129 (ask your employer or attorney who prepared the H1B petition for a copy) to see if change of status or consular processing was requested. If you departed the U.S. while H1B petition requesting change of status was still pending with the USCIS, it is approvable, but it will be issued as consular processing rather than change of status. Even if the USCIS in error grants change of status while you are outside the U.S., it is not applicable and you can safely ignore it.

You should enter the U.S. on unexpired L1B visa stamp since your plan is employment with the L1B employer.

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

QUESTION: Thanks for the info Ajay.

H1B got approved today with company-B. Does it meant that my L1B with company-A  is no more valid?

Shall I have the flexibility not to go with H1B?
If so, can you please provide the directions on the same.

ANSWER: Hi,

Assuming that the H1B petition approval notice states that you were granted change of status, you are automatically in H1B status and no longer in L1B status as the "latest action" by the USCIS is grant of change of status to H1B and you can hold only one status at a time in the U.S. This means that you must be removed from the payroll of the L1B employer immediately.

You can be reinstated in L1B status if you depart the U.S. and enter the U.S. on unexpired L1B visa stamp. Alternatively, your L1B employer should immediately file another L1B petition for you with the USCIS requesting change of status from H1B to L1B.

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

QUESTION: Hi Ajay,

thanks a lot.

I just moved out of the country and came back with new I-94.
Meant my current I-94 is different from the one H1B COS.

Does it meant COS will be invalid now?

Please let me know.

Answer
Hi,

I am assuming that you showed L1B visa stamp and the immigration inspector admitted you in L1B visa status, you are no longer in H1B status and should be ready to be placed on the payroll of the L1B employer. You can disregard the H1B approval notice with COS.  

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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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