J-1 waiver pending and potential H1B case

Asked 10 months ago - San Jose, CA

I am under the process of a J1-visa waiver. Without J1-waiver, am I not able to apply for an H1B visa for this years cap? I actually learned I needed the waiver pretty late (only a few months ago so late noevemer was when the application for the wavier was submitted and it takes 3-5 months).

If the waiver process is complete by APril 1, I know it's ok to then apply for H1B, but what if it isn't? Will USCIS accept the petition if the waiver process is still pending? SHould I just hope that the waiver is approved before the first week of April?

Attorney answers (5)

  1. Carl Michael Shusterman


    Contributor Level 20


    Lawyers agree

    Answered . A good option would be to have your potential employer file an H-1B petition without requesting a change of status on April 1. Therefore, assuming your J waiver is approved between April and October, you could leave the U.S. and obtain your H-1B visa abroad.

    Mr. Shusterman's (former INS Trial Attorney, 1976-82) response to your question is general in nature, as not all... more
  2. Alexander Joseph Segal

    Contributor Level 20


    Lawyers agree

    Answered . Yep. No waiver - no change of status. This is absolutely correct.

    The information contained in this answer is provided for informational purposes only, and should not be construed... more
  3. Guerline Ladouceur-Laurore

    Contributor Level 17


    Lawyers agree

    Answered . In order to change status from that of a J-1 visa holder, without going home for 2 years, one must apply and receive a waiver.

    This answer is not intended to replace a consultation with an attorney and does not create an attorney-client... more
  4. Alexander M. Ivakhnenko

    Contributor Level 20


    Lawyers agree

    Answered . I concur with my esteemed colleagues that the J-1 successful grant of the Waiver is an absolute necessity to proceed with any stated options above.

    DISCLAIMER The answer given above by the lawyer serves for educational purposes only and provides general... more
  5. Akhilesh Krishna

    Contributor Level 12


    Lawyer agrees

    Answered . Yes you definitely need a waiver. You can apply for the H1B, however, it would be speculative to give you an answer on chances of H1B approval while pending J-1 waiver, without knowing the prospects of your waiver approval

    If you don't have an immigration attorney, you should immediately contact one.


Related Topics


If you want to visit or move permanently to the US, you'll want to learn about your different immigration options.

US visas

There are many types of immigrant and non-immigrant visas, including work visas, student visas, and marriage visas.

Can't find what you're looking for? Ask a Lawyer

Get free answers from experienced attorneys.


Ask now

24,576 answers this week

2,984 attorneys answering

Ask a Lawyer

Get answers from top-rated lawyers.

  • It's FREE
  • It's easy
  • It's anonymous

24,576 answers this week

2,984 attorneys answering