Current H1B Processing Time 2020, 3 month – 1 yr Regular

Updated  6 Jan, 20
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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 newWAC19202***** Receipt: 22 Jul, 19
Approved in 4 month 27 days
15 Apr, 19
Slowest case approval in 8 month 5 days
H1B cosWAC19204***** Receipt: 24 Jul, 19
Approved in 4 month 25 days
15 Apr, 19
Slowest case approval in 8 month 5 days
H1B extensionWAC19204***** Receipt: 24 Jul, 19
Approved in 4 month 25 days
15 Apr, 19
Slowest case approval in 8 month 5 days
H1B amendmentWAC19204***** Receipt: 24 Jul, 19
Approved in 4 month 25 days
15 Apr, 19
Slowest case approval in 8 month 5 days
H1B transferWAC19256***** Receipt: 26 Jul, 19
Approved in 4 month 23 days
15 Apr, 19
Slowest case approval in 8 month 5 days


VERMONTFastest Approved CaseRaise USCIS SR Date
H1B newEAC19224***** Receipt: 21 Aug, 19
Approved in 3 month 27 days
26 May, 19
Slowest case approval in 6 month 24 days
H1B cosEAC19243***** Receipt: 18 Sep, 19
Approved in 2 month 29 days
26 May, 19
Slowest case approval in 6 month 24 days
H1B extensionEAC20031***** Receipt: 14 Nov, 19
Approved in 1 month 2 days
19 Aug, 19
Slowest case approval in 3 month 29 days
H1B amendmentEAC20031***** Receipt: 14 Nov, 19
Approved in 1 month 2 days
19 Aug, 19
Slowest case approval in 3 month 29 days
H1B transferEAC20031***** Receipt: 14 Nov, 19
Approved in 1 month 2 days
19 Aug, 19
Slowest case approval in 3 month 29 days


NEBRASKAFastest Approved CaseRaise USCIS SR Date
H1B extensionLIN20031***** Receipt: 14 Nov, 19
Approved in 1 month 2 days
18 Aug, 19
Slowest case approval in 4 month
H1B amendmentLIN20031***** Receipt: 14 Nov, 19
Approved in 1 month 2 days
18 Aug, 19
Slowest case approval in 4 month
H1B transferLIN20031***** Receipt: 14 Nov, 19
Approved in 1 month 2 days
18 Aug, 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. Sandeep_Karne
    Sandeep_Karne

    Hi Anil,
    My employer applied for my first time H1-b visa last year. In November they sent RFE and my employer said they have replied to it and they have done through premium processing on January 6th, 2020. But if I open the case number on USCIS website it still says the RFE was sent on Nov,13th 2019.( it doesn’t show RFE was received)
    When I ask my employer they say the premium processing payment has not yet deducted.
    Can you please share your experience of what is happening ? If they have put in premium processing it should come up in 15 days correct ?


  2. Anil.Gupta
    Anil.Gupta

    Hi @Sandeep_Karne

    Most probably, your employer has not filed for premium upgrade at all. We have not heard of any case where premium stays pending for more than 15 days.


  3. asit_dash
    asit_dash

    Hi Anil

    For my H1B,I got RFE in October and got RFE response submission receipt on September 24th from California centre.

    It’s almost 130 days over and I didn’t got any response from USCIS. Any idea by when I can expect a response.

    Thanks in advance for your help

    Asit


  4. Anil.Gupta
    Anil.Gupta

    Hi @asit_dash

    RFE response from California is taking 100+ days these days. You should be able to get result soon.


  5. antique
    antique

    HI Anil,

    Can u please let me know when can we get the approval for an Amendment raised at Vermont center . As I can see in USCIS site… the processing times for I 129 form is 6.5 to 8.5 months for the visa to be issued abroad…I’m currently in India …and have no stamping …can u please shed some light on it … ur suggestion is greatly appreciated


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3 more replies

  1,068 Useful Questions & Answers

  1. Mraj
    Mraj 13 Feb, 19 at 4:23 pm

    Hi Anil,

    My extension + Amendment filed at California on May 2018 and Responded RFE on December 2018.When can i expect the results?.


    • Anil Gupta
      Anil Gupta 13 Feb, 19 at 5:10 pm

      You can expect your H1B application result by end of March 2019.


  2. Raja
    Raja 13 Feb, 19 at 9:33 am

    Hi Anil, I have my filed H1b extension at Nebraska on 23rd OCT 2018, when can i expect the result.


    • Anil Gupta
      Anil Gupta 13 Feb, 19 at 11:05 am

      You can expect result on or before March 3rd week end.


  3. thinker
    thinker 12 Feb, 19 at 3:49 pm

    Hi,

    What is RFE approval rate in Vermont center? Can you please share if you have a data?


    • Anil Gupta
      Anil Gupta 12 Feb, 19 at 4:04 pm

      Sorry, we do not have RFE approval rate data.


  4. P_K
    P_K 12 Feb, 19 at 3:49 pm

    Hi Anil

    My extension was filed in nov 2018 in calufornia center and moved to vermont in jan 2019 and in process..my curret i797 and i94 expired in dec2018..is it safe to transfer to new employer when my current extrnsion is in process?pls advice


    • Anil Gupta
      Anil Gupta 12 Feb, 19 at 4:04 pm

      I do not recommend to file a transfer at this stage after your i94 expiry.
      It is better to first get your H1B result and then file H1B transfer.


  5. Prakash
    Prakash 12 Feb, 19 at 12:28 pm

    Hi Anil,

    Currently i have an I94 expiring August 2019 but i have a valid Visa and approved petition till Marc 2020. I had short I94 because My passport expired before Petition but anyhow i renewed my passport recently.I tried reaching a CBP office in Indiana but they told me to apply for Extension with USCIS. Please guide me is there is a way I get my I94 extended without leaving US.


  6. RM
    RM 12 Feb, 19 at 5:08 pm

    Hi Anil,
    I just got the H1b cap 2019 case approved after getting RFE – the lawyers filed premium processing and got the approval within a week. The concern is that the visa duration is 2.5 years instead of the usual 3 years. Does it affect chances of extension etc. – does it mean that USCIS think my role is temporary? (it is not, it is a permanent position for a reputed product software company with HQ in Bay Area). Is there a likelihood of getting issues when needing extension? Thank you.


    • RM
      RM 12 Feb, 19 at 5:08 pm

      Just for your data point, my RFE was about missing – it was about this “requested evidence that the petition is supported by a Labor Condition Application. “. Even though the LCA was filed with the application.RFE on 31st Jan, RFE response with premium processing filed on 4th Feb and got answer on 12th Feb – at California service center.


      • Anil Gupta
        Anil Gupta 12 Feb, 19 at 6:00 pm

        You can’t really guess if there will be an RFE at the time of extention.
        As per my opinion, if this is a direct hire product company position, the chances of RFE at extension are 1%.

        So, no need to worry.


        • RM
          RM 20 Feb, 19 at 1:43 pm

          Thank you Anil.
          This is very valuable information in the comments. Wonder if it can be made easier to search through the comments themselves, right now you have to keep “loading” and then using browser search. Just something to consider for improving the website.


          • Anil Gupta
            Anil Gupta 20 Feb, 19 at 3:29 pm

            Thanks for the feedback. We are working on creating separate post/page for each meaningful question and answer. That way, you can directly search (using custom Google search on our website or on google.com directly) and you will be taken directly to the page with relevant question and its answer.

            We ourselves felt the need to do it too to share the past answers and have started work on it.

            We appreciate your feedback.


  7. Nikhil
    Nikhil 10 Feb, 19 at 12:25 pm

    Hello Anil,

    Currently I am in USA in H1B status (as a consultant) but with expired I-94 ( Jan 4th 2019). My H1-B extension regular processing was filed on Dec 21st 2019 in Nebraska Center. My client provided contract extension till May 30th 2019. which was submitted as supporting doc along with the extension package. Assuming my visa extension gets approved for 6 months, by the time I get my approval notice it will be almost time for expiry.

    I am actively looking for a new employer but incase I couldn’t find any within time fame, I am planning to fly back to India around April 30th ( while the petition is still pending) and get H4 stamping. Then I will return to US in H4.

    Do you think this might cause some issues with my H4 stamping ? What will happen if my H1B extension gets approved after I get my H4 stamping?

    Thanks
    Nik


    • Anil Gupta
      Anil Gupta 11 Feb, 19 at 8:04 am

      ## H1B extention will be approved with consular processing
      If you leave USA while your H1B extention is pending, then your extension, if approved, will be approved with consular processing.

      It means that you will have to go out of USA, get H1B stamp and re-enter using H1b visa.

      ## H4 to H1B in USA
      If you’re in USA on H4 visa and then your H-1B extension gets approved, then, you will have to file H-1B change of status application to convert your status from H4 to H-1B change of status.

      You cannot start working unless the H4 to H-1B change of status application gets approved this is a big mess.

      Or you will have to go outside USA, get H1B stamp and re-enter USA using H1B visa.
      This is much faster than waiting for H4 to H1B COS in USA.


      • Nikhil
        Nikhil 11 Feb, 19 at 8:11 am

        Thank you so much for the info.

        Since my current I94 is expired but H1B extension in pending , will it cause any issue in my H4 stamping in India ( planning on end of April)? Do I need to provide any document to prove my status in US ( from I94 expiry date till end of April)?
        Thanks


        • Anil Gupta
          Anil Gupta 12 Feb, 19 at 12:28 pm

          H4 stamping should not be an issue. It is probably the most safest visa at this time!
          You do not need to provide any extra proof for your status but it is good to carry your H1B extension pending notice of receipt, in case visa officer asks for it.

          You may want to see the H4 Visa stamping Checklist here.


          • Nikhil
            Nikhil 12 Feb, 19 at 3:49 pm

            thanks again.


  8. Venkat G
    Venkat G 10 Feb, 19 at 12:25 pm

    Thanks Anil. also filled H4 and H4 EAD along with my H1B, today H4-EAD case status updated to “New card is produced ” but H1 and H4 status not updated yet. Will they approve H4EAD before approving H1B?


    • Anil Gupta
      Anil Gupta 11 Feb, 19 at 8:04 am

      Normally, they do not approve H4 EAD before H4 and h1B extension approval.
      But, we are seeing weird decision pattern from USCIS and this is visible in many cases.

      If your H4 EAD is approved, you are lucky and the chances are very high that your H4 and H1B approvals are on their way pretty soon.
      Enjoy and congratulations!


      • Venkat G
        Venkat G 12 Feb, 19 at 12:28 pm

        Thanks Anil, I’ve received my H1b and H4 approval copies today but my H1b validity has typo in validate dates from 10/26/2018 to 1026/2018 and I-94 validate dates are correct 10/26/2018 to 11/5/2021. No date issue with H4 approval notice(3 years)
        I’ve created online service request for typo in validation dates. do you know how long will it take? is there any way to check status online?


        • Anil Gupta
          Anil Gupta 12 Feb, 19 at 12:28 pm

          It can take 30+ days to get correction. Congratulations for your approvals.


  9. Vijay Sharma
    Vijay Sharma 9 Feb, 19 at 2:09 pm

    Hi Anil,

    My employer is starting my extension ASAP as i have valid approval until Apr 2019.

    My Wife’s H4 VISA and I 94 is expired and was valid until March 2018 though. Can i raise a drop box request for her and get her visa stamping done and then she can travel back and ask for the H4 extension once she will in USA.


    • Anil Gupta
      Anil Gupta 10 Feb, 19 at 12:25 pm

      Yes, you can check if your wife is eligible for dropbox using this app.

      You are actually too close to your current approval’s expiry and may just make in time if your wife moves fast enough and file everything within Feb.
      You may want to see H4 visa stamping checklist.


      • Vijay Sharma
        Vijay Sharma 11 Feb, 19 at 8:11 am

        Yes Anil. I can expedite the process to get everything ready in Feb also i checked in the Dropbox eligibility app and answers all the questions and found the attached approval that means she is eligible for drop box facility right? and also if i can expedite and complete the DS 160 form with all the required documents (for dropbox) then she can travel back without any hurdle?


        • Anil Gupta
          Anil Gupta 12 Feb, 19 at 12:28 pm

          If she can get H4 visa stamp before your current H1B approval expires, she can travel with no issues.


          • Vijay Sharma
            Vijay Sharma 12 Feb, 19 at 3:50 pm

            @@SoanT:disqus She might not have Marriage certificate and Employment verification letter – Original in original (as she is in India and these original i have in USA with me). Is copy of marriage Certificate and EVL is good enough for stamping?


            • Anil Gupta
              Anil Gupta 12 Feb, 19 at 9:19 pm

              Normally, the visa officer may not even ask to show these documents. But, we recommend to carry them in original as a precaution.
              I suggest to mail (by post) them to your wife.


  10. Sayyed
    Sayyed 9 Feb, 19 at 10:27 am

    Hi Anil, Thank you very much for your effort in this regard. My employer filed an extension plus amendment in May 2018 @ California center and my I 94 expired on 6 Sept 2018. I got a case denial notice on 1st November and I left USA on 24 November(Stopped working on the same day I got notice). My employer filed a new petition at California center and receipt date is 21 Dec 18. I’m waiting for premium to get resumed. God willing if my petition is approved, Am I still eligible for drop box since I’m applying through the same employer and same class. I did check the app and based on it I’m eligible for drop box. Do you recommend to go for a drop box as my petition was denied earlier.
    Thanks


    • Anil Gupta
      Anil Gupta 9 Feb, 19 at 2:09 pm

      Petition denial is different than Visa denial. If you checked using am22’s Dropbox eligibility page, then you are good to go for dropbox.
      But, please note that it is not guaranteed that if you are eligible for dropbox, then they won’t call you for interview.

      We are seeing in lot of cases that they do call for interview after you drop you documents in dropbox facility if the US embassy thinks that they need more information.
      So, plan accordingly.




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