Risk of travel while H1B Amendment pending with valid h1B visa in passport?

Hi Anil,

Currently, I am working for Client A [Employer: E] at one location [Location 1] in USA. Now, I have a valid H1B Visa stamped till 30-July-2021. My I-94 is valid till 28-April-2020, reason being, my current passport is getting expired on the same date - for this I have applied for Passport Renewal via Cox & Kings and expecting delivery of updated passport by 1st week of November’2019.

Query is, I have to travel to India on Jan’2020 for some urgent reasons (2-3 weeks) and now current Location [Location 1] is valid till December’2019 and current Client [Client A] is expecting me to work from another Location [Location 2] ASAP and not late than January’2020 [Employer: E will be the same]

So, is it fine, if I apply for amendment as soon as I receive my passport~first week of Nov’2019 and once filed and received notice I can travel to Location 2 (Say sometime in December’2019)- then go back to India for 2-3 weeks in Jan’2020 (personal urgency) and return back to Location 2 (as I already have Stamped Visa and Client and Employer is not changing and Amendment is in Progress) ?

Please advise.

Thanks & Regards,
Bedaprakash Parija

Hi @ved1987

Travel risky while Amendment pending

You have very risk of entry denial as your amendment would be pending and you have started working for the new client.

This is because when you travel while an application is pending, USCIS automatically abandons the issuance of new i94 with approval. Your amendment would be approved with consular processing, if approved.

So, you run a high risk there. I suggest to file amendment in premium and get approval before you travel.

Thanks Anil for the quick response.

So, if I apply my amendment in premium and if I receive one RFE, it will again stall my India trip - correct ?

Thanks & Regards,
Bedaprakash Parija

One last query Anil - so If I run into the risk of Re-entering USA with Amendment receipt notice, which I would have received prior to my India travel, so, how about in India itself, I apply for Amendment (while on leave) and will come back once I receive Amendment receipt notice ?

Thanks & Regards,
Bedaprakash Parija

Not sure if you understood my earlier response. If you are out of US, your amendment will be approved with ‘consular processing’ which means that you will need to go for H1B visa stamp with US embassy before coming back to US.

You can wait in India for amendment approval, get the approval copy and then visit US embassy and get new visa stamp and then enter US. Does it make sense?

Got it now - Thanks very much.

Thanks & Regards,
Bedaprakash Parija