Use H1B 60 day geace if employer wants me to sign a resignation letter to confirm

Hi Anil:

I am a postdoc from one university. My non cap H1B is going to valid until 08/27/2020 and I94 is valid until 09/04/2020, but my current contract is going to end at 02/16/2019.

When I first started my postdoc job here at 08/2017, the first contract was going to end at 06/31/2018, but they applied the H1B with three years until 08/27/2020 for me.

Since the first contract, the contract has been extended three times until 02/16/2019. I have found another university who would like to sponsor my H1B and they should complete the H1B transfer before 02/16/2019.

The current job asked me to sign a resignation letter to confirm that my current job is going to end after 02/16/2019. Should I do it if I want to use the 2 month grace period just in case that the new university cannot make it before the deadline?

If no, what is your advice here? If yes, what should I do? Should I contact the international office from the new university to ask them to send the petition letter on my behalf if they cannot make the deadline?

Thanks very much in advance.

The 60 days grace period is for lay off circumstances beyond employee’s control. In this case, if you sign the letter that you are leaving the job, you appear to be perfectly in control of the situation.

My opinion is that USCIS can deny 60 day grace period in your scenario.

You can join the new university as soon as you receive the USCIS receipt number. My suggestion is to file in Premium processing and get receipt number before Feb 16 and then you are safe.

Thanks for your prompt response. Then can I talk to my current employer to lay me off because of the lack of funding (that is indeed the real reason) rather than asking me to resign the job. Thanks.

Yes, that would be a better option.

Thanks Anil. Really appreciate your suggestions!

Hi Anil: Do you think it would be a good idea to ask the current job not revoke my current H1B? Does that really matter? Thanks.

USCIS requires each employer to withdraw H1B if the employer is no longer working for them. I do not think employer has a choice.

I see. Thanks very much!