H1B Work for 2 Employers – Transfer Receipt & Old i797?

You may not work for multiple H1B employer using current approved H1B & new one on transfer receipt. New company reports I-9 form to USCIS. Payroll uses SSN.

Anil Gupta
  By Anil Gupta    Updated  2 Mar, 21


Coronavirus recession has created a new type of uncomfortable situation for legal visa workers. Those looking to change H1B employers are scared to join a new company based on USCIS receipt.

They are afraid of their future job loss or the possible transfer denial by USCIS. It is certainly not an easy decision.

Can H1B work for 2 employers simultaneously one on receipt and other on approved H1B petition?

You cannot work for two H1B employers at the same time unless you have a concurrent H1B approval.

  • Employer B’s H1B secondary application should mention Employer A’s H1B as a primary employer.
  • Employer B has to specifically mention in the H1B application that it is a ‘CONCURRENT‘ H1B.

Most H1B worker’s intention is to move to a new employer after the new petition is approved and have a cushion of job safety.

There is no simple solution to this complex problem. USCIS has not given any relief and your only option is to either delay joining the new employer until H1B transfer is approved or join by leaving the current company.

My Suggestion

My suggestion is to wait for transfer approval during the current economic turmoil. I advise preferring job stability over an increased salary.

If your current employer has no new project for you and you fear lay off, then you will be eligible for 60 days of legal stay to find a new H1B sponsor.

Choose the new company in a more stable business area like healthcare, medical insurance, e-commerce, e-education, and similar.

Many people have already been laid off in April immediately after they got the news of lottery selection. This trend will increase as long as the forced stay-at-home orders are active. A weak quarter until June end will certainly result in multiple new projects to be shelved.

Problems

Working for two H1B employers is not allowed until you have concurrent H1B approval.

Do note that your H1B is approved based on a certain number of hours per week of work.

As soon as you join a new employer, they report your employment to USCIS by filling form I-9. Do not remain under the illusion that USCIS will not get to know your new employment start date.

Your payroll will leave traces of information too as taxes are reported to IRS using your SSN.

Is it worth taking the risk?

I don’t suggest to take the risk. It is better to stay on right side of law.

It is possible that many people would have already tried this overlap of H1B jobs especially the contractors.

We have not heard of any specific problem if you do multiple jobs for a short period of 1-4 weeks.

Over and above a month could ring a bell in USCIS ears and you may or may not face issues in future H1B extensions. It’s your luck.

USCIS is not the only agency that you need to be aware of. US embassy is also very strict and may hand you over form 221g if they suspect any foul play with the Immigration laws.




Author

Anil Gupta
  By Anil Gupta           

Recent discussion on forum

  1. anonymous
    anonymous

    You cannot work for two companies at same time. i.e. for a given same time period two companies cannot pay you salary. You can have multiple employers at any time though.


  2. Anonymous09
    Anonymous09

    I don’t think so. You can have concurrent H1b and works for 2 diff employers, however the number of hours per weeks cannot exceed some x of realistic hours.

    Eg: 2 jobs cannot be full time, meant one can be 8 hrs full time per day and the other can be part time 2-3 hours per day. Again these hours are for just example.

    If you try to show 2 full time and try to apply for concurrent H1b, uscis will decline the petition.


  3. anonymous
    anonymous

    Do you know anyone who has a a concurrent H1B approved?


  4. anil_am22
    anil_am22

    Just 1 person that i know was trying to apply. She is a nurse and other clinic wanted her to work on weekends for them.


  5. anonymous
    anonymous

    Yea, chances of approval are close to none, it has to be a very strong application.


  6. anonymous39
    anonymous39

    Then you need to apply for partime H1B. There is no such thing like concurrent H1B. You cannot work two 40 hrs.
    If you apply for partime H1B, then I dont have to tell any one here what will be the consequences.
    I will leave to one’s wiseness.


  7. anonymous47
    anonymous47

    what is part time H1b?


  8. anonymous25
    anonymous25

    I don’t want to say ignorance is a bliss.

    But these are special cases and not common for everyone and will end up in law suit against you by companies if finer prints of NDA is blindly signed.

    All these very special cases and need an experienced attorney to support.


  9. anil_am22
    anil_am22

    Part time H1B is nothing but a secondary H1B approval to work for two employers at same time.

    USCIS calls it concurrent H1B.


  10. test12
    test12

    Dear Anill,

    I have been reading your answers for last 3 months. You are helping people a lot really. This is very kind helping nature.

    Here i have one important question, could you please clarify my if its problem for my green card process?

    I was working employer ‘A’ in March. And i have got H1B Job offer in employer ‘B’. ‘B’ started the H1B transfer process on March 15 in normal process.

    I got receipt on March 30. I did not resign for employer ‘A’ due to job security reason and join on April 1 in employer ‘B’ due to pressure. I got petition approved after 3 months on June 30.

    I have resigned for the employer ‘A’ on that day Jun 30. During April, May and June i have got the payslips in ‘A’ and ‘B’ as well. Experience overlapped.

    ‘B’ doesn’t know about my resignation at ‘A’. ‘B’ thought that i resigned when i joined with them. Now ‘B’ processing GC. They are asking experience letters from ‘A’.

    ‘A’ has issued the experience letter upto June 30. But 3 month before means on Apr 1, i have already joined in ,B.

    Those 3 months are consisting the employment in A and ‘B’. But legally i did not attend the ‘A’ the day when i joined in ‘B’. I applied leaves for ‘A’ during 3 months.

    But i have been paid from both ‘A’ and ‘B’ during 3 months simultaneously.

    1. Could you please let me know what can i do now for submitting experience letters from ‘A’ to ‘B’ for processing GC. Will i face any legal issues in the GC process. could you please give me better answer for the same.

    2. Shall tell the fact to ‘B’ and can i adjust the dates with ‘B’ experience letter? But i cant do any changes with ‘A’.

    3. Attorney is asking now to submit previous employer letter to process PERM/Labor Certification.

    I think you are the right person to answer the same.

    Thanks
    Anonymous


  11. anil_am22
    anil_am22

    Hi Anonymous,
    Your case demands a professional advice from an attorney and I am not one. But, I would suggest as per my knowledge:

    1. You have essentially violated the H1B rules by working for 2 employers at same time. Your SSN already has this information since payroll was run on your name from two companies.
    2. You can;t hide it from either company since it is already in official records. Not sure if company B can hide it somehow or may be there is a rule which can exempt this kind of situation.
    3. You should disclose this to your attorney from company B and ask them to suggest a way out. This can certainly pose an issue with GC if you do not fix it.

    Another piece of advice that may or may not help:

    1. If you leave the country and re-enter, you would get a new i-94 and a fresh ADMISSION to USA.
      As per the H1B rules, the violation caused before this re-entry are NOT considered for future. This means that if you go out and re-enter to USA, this violation would be out of scope for your GC process.
      But, please do consult an attorney (talk to an independent one, if not your company’s attorney), before taking any steps based on above advice.

    Remember, I am not an expert and all of the above is just an advice based on what I have heard from reliable sources including internet.


  12. chakriare
    chakriare

    Anonymous, my wife is same exact situation. Working full time for company A, now has offer from Company B. Thinking of joining B on receipt and continuing with both till my H1 trasfer is approved ( for same reasons you stated in your case). Did you speak to independent lawyer, what did they say? it will greatly help if you can share your findings.


  13. anil_am22
    anil_am22

    Hi @chakriare

    As far as i know, you cannot work for 2 employers at same time.

    Normally, couple of weeks overlap is acceptable (that too depends on USCIS officer) but not more than a month.


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