Current H1B Processing Time 2019-20, 3 month – 1 yr Regular

 19 Sep, 19
  1.4k    

How long does H1B regular processing take?

H1B regular application processing time is 3 months to 1 year for approvals.

H1B premium processing is getting approval within 1 to 15 days of filing. Applying H1B in premium does not increase your chances of H1B RFE or denial.

Average USCIS RFE response review processing time is 90 days.

How long does H1B transfer take? California Service center is slowest for H1B transfer while Vermont and Nebraska are faster in processing H1B extensions, transfers and Amendments.

The best case H1B approval data is updated daily using the official USCIS processing times and data shared by real H1B applicants in various forums and trackers online.

CALIFORNIAFastest Approved CaseRaise USCIS SR Date
H1B newWAC1919352359 Receipt: 09 May, 19
Approved in 4 month 13 days
18 Dec, 18
Slowest case approval in 9 month 5 days
H1B cosWAC19103***** Receipt: 01 Mar, 19
Approved in 6 month 22 days
18 Dec, 18
Slowest case approval in 9 month 5 days
H1B extensionWAC1918250*** Receipt: 27 Apr, 19
Approved in 4 month 25 days
18 Dec, 18
Slowest case approval in 9 month 5 days
H1B amendmentWAC19132***** Receipt: 11 Apr, 19
Approved in 5 month 11 days
18 Dec, 18
Slowest case approval in 9 month 5 days
H1B transferWAC19164***** Receipt: 05 Apr, 19
Approved in 5 month 17 days
18 Dec, 18
Slowest case approval in 9 month 5 days


VERMONTFastest Approved CaseRaise USCIS SR Date
H1B newEAC19222***** Receipt: 19 Aug, 19
Approved in 1 month 1 days
22 May, 19
Slowest case approval in 4 month
H1B cosEAC19222***** Receipt: 19 Aug, 19
Approved in 1 month 1 days
22 May, 19
Slowest case approval in 4 month
H1B extensionEAC19222***** Receipt: 19 Aug, 19
Approved in 1 month 1 days
22 May, 19
Slowest case approval in 4 month
H1B amendmentEAC19222***** Receipt: 19 Aug, 19
Approved in 1 month 1 days
22 May, 19
Slowest case approval in 4 month
H1B transferEAC19222***** Receipt: 19 Aug, 19
Approved in 1 month 1 days
22 May, 19
Slowest case approval in 4 month


NEBRASKAFastest Approved CaseRaise USCIS SR Date
H1B extensionLIN19222***** Receipt: 19 Aug, 19
Approved in 1 month 1 days
22 May, 19
Slowest case approval in 4 month
H1B amendmentLIN19222***** Receipt: 19 Aug, 19
Approved in 1 month 1 days
22 May, 19
Slowest case approval in 4 month
H1B transferLIN19222***** Receipt: 19 Aug, 19
Approved in 1 month 1 days
22 May, 19
Slowest case approval in 4 month





H1B Regular Vs Premium

H1B Premium processing costs $1410 and you can get approval within 1-15 days. USCIS will refund the premium fees if they cannot process it in 15 calendar days including weekends. Regular H1B application takes more than 3 months to get approval.

Does H1B premium increase chances of RFE or Denial?

Applying H1B in premium does not increase your chances of H1B RFE or denial. The possibility of H1B approval are same in regular vs premium application.

If your employer is scaring you by saying that upgrading pending H1B to premium will result in denial or RFE, they are just trying to save money. This is a rumor and there is no need to believe it.

 

H1B Denial Rate

Third party consulting companies like Capgemini, Cognizant, TCS, Infosys etc. have 20% higher rate of h1B rejection than direct client full time H1B jobs.

Make sure that your employer files the proofs to support your employment as H1b Specialty occupation is the number one reason for H1B RFE and then denial.

 

Steps After H1B Lottery

Check out our 7 steps for getting H1B and starting working on Oct 1 with H1B. If you have filed H1B in regular processing, we suggest to upgrade to premium processing so that you can get approval before October and can start working on Oct 1.

You will make more money by starting work earlier than saving Premium processing fees of $1410.

7 steps to H1B lottery process, Approval, RFE and Denials

Case Outside Normal Processing Time

If your ‘case receipt date’ is before the USCIS service request date mentioned above, you should ask your employer or attorney raise a service request with USCIS to check why your case has been delayed. Only your employer can raise the service request for H1B application.

It is possible that your case is taking longer than other similar cases and may be stuck in administrative processing.

 

H1B Lay off Grace Period

If you lose your H1B job or have left it by choice, you have 60 days grace to find another H1B sponsor. You can start working immediately based on receipt on or before 60th day.

USCIS H1B 240 Day Rule

You can keep working after 240 days of i94 expiry if your H1B has been filed as Amendment + Extension or as transfer.

If your case is pending for approval with USCIS and your 240 days after i94 expiry are fast approaching, we strongly recommend to upgrade your application to ‘Premium Processing’ at 200 day mark. This will help you get a result before your 240 day limit and avoid stopping work.

Consular Proc = Visa (Stamp or visa foil) to be issued outside USA in a US Embassy.

How long does H1B regular processing take?

H1B regular application processing time is 3 months to 1 year for approvals.

H1B Regular Vs Premium

H1B Premium processing costs $1410 and you can get approval within 1-15 days. USCIS will refund the premium fees if they cannot process it in 15 calendar days including weekends. Regular H1B application takes more than 3 months to get approval.

Does H1B premium increase chances of RFE or Denial?

Applying H1B in premium does not increase your chances of H1B RFE or denial. The possibility of H1B approval are same in regular vs premium application.


USA USCIS Processing Time
 



Recent discussion on forum

  1. vg100
    vg100

    Got it! Thanks @Anil.Gupta!


  2. Anil.Gupta
    Anil.Gupta

    Hi @Agilan

    H1B processing times vary by each service center. Please check the time table as given on our processing time page.


  3. Arunava_Datta
    Arunava_Datta

    Hi Anil, your prediction was pin accurate and I receive my approval on May 30th.Thanks for being so kind to help in queries.


  4. pink2012
    pink2012

    Keeping my fingers crossed… Thanks for your prompt reply.


  5. Akki24
    Akki24

    Hi @Anil.Gupta
    Received my approval on August 1st via Email & text message.
    All websites shows updated status as below:

    On August 1, 2019, we approved your Form I-129, Petition for a Nonimmigrant Worker, Receipt Number LIN191575**14. We will mail your approval notice. Please follow the instructions in the notice. If you move, go to [www.uscis.gov/addresschange]…

    Now waiting to get hard-copy of the approval.

    Akshay


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270 more replies

  1,490 Useful Questions & Answers

  1. Shiv
    Shiv 14 Jan, 19 at 9:47 am

    My I94 got expired by July and I switched to a new employer by June and I am working for the new employer now using the h1 b transfer receipt notice. Will I be able to switch to a different employer/company now for h1 transfer?


  2. Amit Garg
    Amit Garg 14 Jan, 19 at 9:47 am

    Hi Anil,

    HAPPY NEW YEAR..

    My H1b extension/Amendment pending since Feb’18 from California and now my 240 days grace period going to expire soon. I have approved i797B till July’19 my question is can I go to India for visa stamping base on approved i797B.

    Please suggest..


    • Anil Gupta
      Anil Gupta 14 Jan, 19 at 10:04 am

      It is very risky to travel and going for stamping since your H1B Amendment is pending.


      • Amit Garg
        Amit Garg 9 Feb, 19 at 10:03 am

        Hi Anil,

        Thanks for your quick reply.. but any how i need to travel back to India if i will not get result from USCIS until 240 days grace period (i-94 already expired on June’18).
        do you know It will impact my existing application if i will travel to India and go for stamping.


        • Anil Gupta
          Anil Gupta 9 Feb, 19 at 10:13 am

          You are legally allowed to stay in US after 240 days have passed after i94 expiry but cannot work.

          Impact:
          If you travel, your H1B amendment/extension will be approved only with consular processing and no i94 will be issued automatically. You will then have to go to US embassy, get the H1B stamp with approved amendment and then enter US.


  3. Fresh H1B'
    Fresh H1B' 14 Jan, 19 at 9:47 am

    Hi Anil,
    I have an H1B petition in process from last year’s filing by employer A. I still do not have the approval yet. Now a new employer B wants to file a fresh new H1B this year, 2019. If I get the first employer A H1 petition approved, and start working, and later if I get employer B petition approved as well, can I opt to start working with employer B? Will this fresh new H1 valid? And what should I do if I do not want to continue to work with employer A? What is the best way to switch to Employer B?
    Appreciate your response.


    • Anil Gupta
      Anil Gupta 14 Jan, 19 at 10:05 am

      Remember, it is probably not possible to get employer B’s application approved before employer A’s last year’s application.
      But, since you are hypothetically asking, to work with employer B, you will have to file H1B transfer application again using employer A’s H1B as a base application.

      If you do not start working for employer or enter US with employer A petition, you are free to join any one employer i.e. A or B if both of there applications are approved.


  4. h1b extension
    h1b extension 14 Jan, 19 at 9:47 am

    Hello Anil,

    Do you have rate of denials for extensions filed at Nebraska


  5. snyder
    snyder 14 Jan, 19 at 9:47 am

    Hi Anil,
    My new H1B COS is still pending, is it possible to file a H1B transfer at the same time if I want to change job?

    Thank you!


    • Anil Gupta
      Anil Gupta 14 Jan, 19 at 10:05 am

      What is your current status and what’s your i94 expiry?


      • snyder
        snyder 9 Feb, 19 at 10:03 am

        current status is L1 and i94 expire in 2 years


        • Anil Gupta
          Anil Gupta 9 Feb, 19 at 10:13 am

          Is this H1 COS application filed as Cap-subject new H1B application or you are trying to re-applying your old H1B?


          • snyder
            snyder 9 Feb, 19 at 10:43 am

            it’s new cap-subject application


            • Anil Gupta
              Anil Gupta 10 Feb, 19 at 12:27 pm

              No, you cannot apply for H1B traTrans unless the first Cap-subject H1B is approved.


              • snyder
                snyder 11 Feb, 19 at 8:13 am

                Got it. Thank you


  6. disqus_8ipsuSKncV
    disqus_8ipsuSKncV 14 Jan, 19 at 9:47 am

    Hi Anil,

    My H-1B CAP was received by the California Service Center on April 21. I haven’t received an RFE yet and the petition is still pending. Do you think, a RFE can still be sent now? When do you think the case would be approved. I am a direct employee.

    Current visa status – F-1 OPT

    Thank you!


    • Anil Gupta
      Anil Gupta 14 Jan, 19 at 10:05 am

      Yes, RFE can be sent anytime before the approval.
      I estimate your result by March end.


      • disqus_8ipsuSKncV
        disqus_8ipsuSKncV 9 Feb, 19 at 10:03 am

        Thanks , would you recommend traveling to India on F-1 OPT EAD card to India in the last week of January 2019?

        Thank you!


        • Anil Gupta
          Anil Gupta 9 Feb, 19 at 10:13 am

          It depends on how your H1B has been filed.
          Assuming you have opted for ‘change of status’ with H1B application, the COS option will be abandoned as soon as you leave US.

          This means that if your H1B is approved later, you will have to go out of US again to get H1B stamping and re-enter USA.


          • disqus_8ipsuSKncV
            disqus_8ipsuSKncV 9 Feb, 19 at 10:43 am

            Thanks for your prompt responses. Yes my H-1B was applied under COS. If I do travel on my EAD card this month, once my H-1B is approved, do I have to leave the country immediately for consular stamping?


            • Anil Gupta
              Anil Gupta 10 Feb, 19 at 12:27 pm

              If you enter US F1 status, then yes, to start using H1B (after its approved), you will have to go out, get the H1B visa stamp and re-enter using H1B visa to start working using your H1B.

              Since COS will be abandoned, your status from F1 to H1B will NOT change automatically.


  7. Saimukunth
    Saimukunth 14 Jan, 19 at 9:47 am

    Hi Anil,

    One of my friends who has a receipt number of ‘WAC181***0964’ has got approval today for 1 year till October 2019. The service center is California. The employer has told him they’ll be doing a extension, and how does extension work? Is it safe to go to US, and apply for extension and wait for a response because of the 240 day rule? Also, his receipt number is just two behind my receipt ‘WAC181***0962’. So, whether I can expect results earlier than expected. Kindly clarify. Thanks!


    • Anil Gupta
      Anil Gupta 14 Jan, 19 at 10:04 am

      H1B extension is a normal process and everybody goes through it.

      240 day rule is also an official rule which comes into picture if i94 has expired and extension is pending with USCIS. This is perfectly safe and is legal way.

      Yes, the chances are high that your H1B would also reach result soon.


      • Saimukunth
        Saimukunth 9 Feb, 19 at 10:03 am

        Thank you so much for your quick reply, Anil! 🙂


        • Anil Gupta
          Anil Gupta 9 Feb, 19 at 10:13 am

          You are welcome and all the best for your case. Let me know if you need more information.


          • Saimukunth
            Saimukunth 9 Feb, 19 at 10:43 am

            Yes, do we have to apply for an extension 6 months prior to H1B expiry ?, because even after stamping, traveling is definitely going to take time, minimum May. So, traveling within 5 months of Visa expiry is ok? That was his primary concern because if the extension gets delayed/rejected, he’ll have to fly back again? Thanks! 🙂


            • Anil Gupta
              Anil Gupta 9 Feb, 19 at 10:49 am

              Applying extension before 6 months of expiry is recommended as the current processing times are more than 7 months at some USCIS service centers in regular processing. It is not mandatory though. Some people are brave enough to apply just before the last day of expiry too!!

              Travelling with 5 months of visa expiry is perfectly fine. I have seen people travelling with less than 1 month of visa expiry too. After entering USA, they immediately file for extension.
              So, there is no need to worry.

              All of this is part and parcel of H1B visa. You will be used to it once you are in USA.


              • Saimukunth
                Saimukunth 10 Feb, 19 at 12:33 pm

                Thanks again for answering my question, Anil! 🙂


  8. hello
    hello 14 Jan, 19 at 9:47 am

    Hi,

    Does process time vary for service company and direct ?


    • Anil Gupta
      Anil Gupta 14 Jan, 19 at 10:04 am

      No, processing times do not vary by type of company you work for.


  9. Nevergiveup
    Nevergiveup 14 Jan, 19 at 9:47 am

    Hi Anil, sorry if you have already answered this. My wife H4 status shows approved in new USCIS site but mine H1B still in “Received state”.

    I believe H4 gets approved only when H1B is approved. please let me know if my understanding is correct so that I can proceed to put donw my papers as this was a TRANSFER case.


    • Anil Gupta
      Anil Gupta 14 Jan, 19 at 10:04 am

      This is generally true. H1B should be approved.
      But, I would still recommend to WAIT for approval on H1B as well.

      I have seen cases where H1B approval is delayed or gets RFE even though H4 is approved. USCIS works in a weird way and it is better to wait.


      • Nevergiveup
        Nevergiveup 9 Feb, 19 at 10:02 am

        Thank you Anil!


  10. Shwetha sunder
    Shwetha sunder 14 Jan, 19 at 9:47 am

    Hi Anil,

    Can you please explain to me the logic behind
    the different series? Are the lower series supposed to receive approvals faster than the higher series? Does it have to do with the receipt date? My receipt date is May 8th as per the DHS website and April 2 as per USCIS sure and my series is WAC181645, I see that the lower series number receive approval sooner, having said that the series after mine are also processed.. I am using various websites such as worktheme and H1bstat ru to analyze the data.

    If you know the logic can you please explain.

    Thanks
    Shwetha


    • Anil Gupta
      Anil Gupta 14 Jan, 19 at 10:04 am

      The series does not really tell which type of application it is. So, it will never show you the real picture.




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