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L1B to H1B without living in US? Is it better to go for H1B from scratch?

Plano, TX |


Last year I got the L1B visa to be able to work in US for specific projects while I was based in Canada. At the beginning of 2012, I was transferred by the same company to France for another project where I am still living.


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The annual cap for the H-1B visa category has been reached for Federal Fiscal Year 2013 (beginning October 2012). As such, an H-1B visa will not likely be available to you until October 2013. The L-1 is most likely the most favorable visa category available to you and your company at this time. I suggest that your company consult with competent counsel to assess other options that may be available as well.



Thanks for the answers! Is there any difference in the process if the H1B visa is requested by a different company? The transition is faster from L1B to H1B or applying to H1B from the beginning (supposing that this is a valid procedure since I am not currently living in US)? Thanks!

Erik CJ Anderson

Erik CJ Anderson


There will be no difference from an H-1B cap perspective if you're dealing with another company.


I agree with my colleague.

This answer is of a general nature and should not be relied upon as final, nor is it intended as legal advice. Consult with a qualified attorney before making any legal decisions. Gen Kimura, (832) 247-6932.


The earliest your employer would be able to file for an H-1B is April 1, 2013 and the earliest that you could be on H-1B is October 1, 2013.

J Charles Ferrari Eng & Nishimura 213.622.2255 The statement above is general in nature and does not constitute legal advice, as not all the facts are known. You should retain an attorney to review all the facts specific to your case in order to receive advise specific to your case. The statement above does not create an attorney/client relationship. Answers on Avvo can only be general ones, as specific answers would require knowledge of all the facts. As such, they may or may not apply to the question.

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