H1B Denied Today, H4 starts in 5 Days, do I need to leave the country?

Here is my case:

  • Previous i-94 expiry date: may 31
  • Date applied for H1B : may 8.
  • Date H1B denied: sep 26

After I applied for H1B , I also applied for H4. I received it with a future-effective date

  • Date applied for H4 : may 31.
  • Date H4 Approved: july 24
  • Start Date on H4: oct 1

My H1B got denied on Sep 26 and my H4 starts on Oct 1 (just 5 days later). Do I need to exit the country? Will the 4 days of unlawful presence affect my future chances of H1B visa?

Hi @robby1

5 days should not affect but you will need to mention it on your all future DS160 applications as overstay time in US and explain the reason.

Thank you for following up Anil. I realized it’s actually 4 days and not 5.

And if I wanted to avoid having to say yes for overstay in DS160, I’m assuming I’ll have to exit the country. How soon do I have to leave so I can claim that I haven’t overstayed? Also will saying yes in DS160 automatically mark me for rejection?

There is no issue as the 10-15 days time is normal after getting a denial. People even stay for 60 days.

If you have to say ‘no’ to this question legally, you should have left US on same day as denial day.

Thanks a ton Anil for helping folks like us. Really appreciate it. Your reply was exactly what we had thought too. What threw us off was when I asked our lawyer , she replied:

"Although it is only a few days, we recommend traveling to avoid USCIS questioning your maintenance of status in the future. "

Any thoughts why she would say that? At this point since we’re going to technically be back “in status” on Tuesday, we’re not planning on exiting. And in future DS160s we will accept 4 days overstay as by the time we saw the denial , tried to wrap things up and get flight tickets our next status had taken effective and so we saw no need to. Do you see any problems with that?

Hi @robby1

I don’t see an issue but your attorney is probably trying to play safe. USCIS these days is very strict these days and can cite any reason for denial in future.