Change of status to F1 after H1B lay off

Hello Anil

I have lost my job due company lay off. My H1B is filed under SOC code:17-2141 under Mechanical Engineers with I-94 valid from Oct 1st, 2017, to Sept 12th, 2020.

The company revoked my H1B on Oct 11, 2019. It’s already past 30 days, and I couldn’t find a job so far. I have applied for a second masters at a university.

Hopefully, I’ll receive an I-20 within this week, and I’m planning to apply for a change of status (COS).

I have following questions. Could you please answer them

  1. If USCIS receive my COS application packet on the 60th day, Can I still stay back in the USA, or do I have to wait for the acknowledgment receipt? Usually, how long would it take to receive this acknowledge notice.

  2. What are the Chances of approval to change of status in my scenario ( provided not approved what are the next steps)

  3. Under what status can I stay back after 60 days, once USCIS receive my COS request?

  4. When COS is still pending, can I enroll into school and start attending classes ?

  5. If yes on question 3, Can I still wait for the approval change without attending classes during COS processing time and look for jobs?

  6. During COS processing time, if I get a job offer from a company and H1B cap exempt petition was

a. Approval, what are the steps needed further? (Can I work right away, or do I need to get a stamping?)

b. Denied, what are the next steps? ( Can I still stay back on COS request?)

  1. Can the company apply for H1B cap-exempt petition without withdrawing my COS request?

  2. How do I activate my SEVIS if COS gets approved? Do I have to leave country and return or cross a border?

  3. If I change my area of work from Mechanical to IT industry. Can I expect an RFE during H1B transfer?

  4. Can a Y company apply for transfer for H1B, while another application is already pending for transfer of H1B from X company?

  5. Let’s say, I got a job offer, and my transfer for the H1B application packet was received by USICS on the 60th day. Can I still stay back and start working, or Do I have to wait for acknowledgment notice before the 60th day?

I suggest to read this article about 60 day grace period which explains many scenarios.

My suggestion is to go out of US and then get F1 Visa. Then, you can enter US.

If you file F1 COS now, then you will add complexity to your case as you will also file H1B sooner or later.

1 Like

Hi @kumar_Jalal

Can you share some details on how you further addressed the issue and share your experience.
In a similar situation and looking for options. Thank you in advance.

Hi @Anil_Gupta, is it possible that

  1. If I change to F1 Visa study for some time and later continue with the same old H1B to transfer?
  2. If I don’t get any job in the grace period, I can still search for jobs from India and use the same H1 transferred to the new employer?

Thank you in advance.

Hi @RS2019

You can file F1 to H1B change of status anytime in future.

Hi @Anil_Gupta, thank you. And just to clarify, it will be CAP exempt, is this correct.

Thank you in advance.

Yes, it will be cap exempt until you exhaust 6 years.

Thank you @Anil_Gupta.
To add to it, I had crossed six years as I had an I140 …so in this case … Will it CAP exempt as well?

Hi @RS2019

I suggest to clearly mention all points in one go. It takes too much time to respond if you keep adding information in bits and pieces and keep asking same question again.

I got my PhD admit came to India. Got approved for F1 visa.