Question: I am currently on an H4 and have applied for an H1 to start October 1. If I travel outside the U.S. and return before October 1, will I be on my H4 ? What happens if I return on my H4 after October 1? Will I have H1 or H4 status?
Answer: Assoc. Director Efren Hernandez wrote a Memorandum clarifying visa options while traveling when a person has applied for a change of status. This is called the “leapfrog principle.”
- If you remain in the U.S. – your status changes to H1 on October 1.
- If your H1 is approved before you travel and you return before H1 start date – status changes to H1 on October 1.
- If you do not want to change status to a H1, you can return after October 1 on your H4.