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What is the total number of years that I can stay on H1B visa?

Jersey City, NJ |

I was on L1B visa till Nov. 5th, 2012. The visa expiry date was Nov 8th, 2012. I came back to my home country and applied for fresh L1B on Jan. 30th 2013. The fresh L1B visa was denied due to not meeting specialized skills. I then applied for H1B visa for the year 2014. I have been selected in the lottery and the petition is in progress. Generally, if we stay outside of US for 1 year then the prior stay will not be counted towards our total no. of years that we could stay in US. Based on the above dates and the visa category, Can you please suggest which time would be the best to travel back to US once I get my H1B visa?

Attorney Answers 4


  1. Best answer

    six years including the time you have already spent on L1B unless you stay in your home country for a full calendar year before applying for the H1B.

    NYC EXPERIENCED IMMIGRATION ATTORNEYS www.myattorneyusa.com; email: info@myattorneyusa.com; Phone: (866) 456-­8654; Fax: 212-964-0440; Cell: 212-202-0325. The information contained in this answer is provided for informational purposes only, and should not be construed as legal advice on any subject matter.


  2. Somewhere in that scenario you said you won the lottery. Why not pursue that? Through the lottery you become an LPR and no longer need a visa.


  3. H1+ L1 combined should be 6 years. This period excludes any time spent outside the US while the visas were valid.

    Business Immigration Attorney. For H, L, J, EB5s, PERM and EB1/2/3 Petitions. Call 800-688-7892 or visit www.ImmigrationDesk.com. Law Office of Anu Gupta. The advice suggested here is for general information only and not to be construed as legal advice.


  4. The quick and dirty answer would be six years. However, immigration law is fraught with exceptions. Speak with a lawyer for information specific to your situation.

    IMPORTANT: Mr. Murray's response is NOT legal advice and does NOT create an attorney-client relationship. You should NOT rely on this response. Mr. Murray's response was generated without conducting a full inquiry as would occur during an attorney-client consultation. It is likely that the response above may be made less accurate, or become entirely inaccurate, as you, i.e. the questioner, disclose additional facts that should only be discussed during a private attorney-client consultation. I strongly recommend that you consult an attorney who is licensed to practice law in your state (or, in the case of immigration law, an attorney in ANY state), whereupon all relevant facts will be discussed. All responses posted by Mr. Murray on Avvo.com are intended as general information for the education of the public, and not for any specific individual. For persons located in New Jersey: To the extent that Mr. Murray's profile can be considered an advertisement in New Jersey, which is denied, be advised that NO ASPECT OF THIS ADVERTISEMENT HAS BEEN APPROVED BY THE SUPREME COURT OF NEW JERSEY. Furthermore, the selection methodology for the SuperLawyers' "Rising Stars" awards is set forth at length at this website: http://www.superlawyers.com/about/selection_process.html.

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