What should I do regarding the H1/H4/B1 Visa? 3 Answers as of March 14, 2011

My family went to USA in a B1/B2 visa. While in USA, I found an employer and they applied for a change of status for myself from B1/B2 to H1. After receiving my I797 notice of approval for class H1 and a new I-94 which permits me to work in USA for 3 years, I applied for H4 for my family (still pending). Until now, the H1 visa has not been stamped in my passport.

1. Can I have the visa stamped in my passport while inside USA?
2. If "NO", can I apply for a social security using I-797 and the 3 years extended i-94?
3. Will i receive a visa while in USA?
4. If I leave USA, can I enter USA using B1/B2 visa or has it been cancelled already?
5. If I find a new job/employer, can I transfer the I797 NOA-H1 sponsorship? How?
6. If "YES" should I apply for a new H4 for my family?


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Pacifica Legal Services
Pacifica Legal Services | Floyd Fernandez
I'll answer in order:
1) No, you have to have your visa stamped when in an appointment with the U.S. embassy or consulate when traveling outside;
2) Yes, you can apply for the social security card with the I-797 and 3-year extension on the I-94;
3) While your notice is not an entry visa, it is a recognized visa for work authorization purposes;
4) Your B-1/B-2 visa has been canceled;
5) You must begin the H-1B application through an I-539 Change of Status application, once done, you may begin working for the new employer with the former H-1B document; 6) You do not need to apply for a new H-4 for your family. If you need additional help, call or e-mail me.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 3/14/2011
Nicastro Piscopo, APLC
Nicastro Piscopo, APLC | Louis M. Piscopo
1. No. Visas can only be issued by a consulate outside the U.S. In your case, it would have to be the consulate in your home country. You have to personally appear at the consulate interview and pick up your visa.

2. Yes, you can apply for a SSN using the approval notice and new I-94 indicating you have H1B status.

3. No. See No. 1.

4. No. You must obtain an H1B visa to re-enter the U.S. If you did enter using your B1/B2 visa you would be committing fraud. Also, it would invalidate your H1B status since you would have entered as a visitor and not an H1B.

5. Your new employer has to file an I-129F petition requesting a change of employers. Under H1B Portability, you are legally able to start working for the new employer once the petition is filed with USCIS, you do not have to wait for it to approved.

6. If you change employers before your family receives their H4 visas, you will have to provide new supporting documents to the consulate.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 3/8/2011
Law Offices of Caro Kinsella
Law Offices of Caro Kinsella | Caro Kinsella, Esq.
The H-1b will only be stamped in your passport the first time you travel outside the U.S. At the consulate where you reside.
Answer Applies to: Florida
Replied: 3/7/2011
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