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Documents Needed for H1B Transfer & the Application Process
April 19, 2022
4 mins
Wooden blocks engraved with the English alphabet arranged as " H1B Visa " on the background of the US flag

In this blog, we have explained in detail the following topics related to H1B Transfer:

  • H1B Transfer requirements.
  • Document checklist for H1B Transfer.
  • How to apply for the process.

Why & When Will You Need an H1B Transfer?

"Is it possible to transfer my H1B visa to another company?" This is one of the most common questions asked by H1B employees who have worked for a US-based company for several years. According to the USCIS regulations, it is possible to go from one employer to another while being an H1B holder. In fact, you don't even have to seek permission from your current employer to do so.

There is, however, one contingency: To change your employer, your new employer must submit an H1B Transfer petition to the USCIS on your behalf. On your part, you need to ensure you fulfill all your contractual obligations before moving to another employer.

The H1B Visa Transfer is a solution for any H1B holder wanting to change employers for any reason. The process is very similar to the original H1B process, where you have to find an H1B sponsoring employer who will pay for your visa. The only difference is that there is no H1B Cap. Since you already have a valid H1B visa status, there is no point in running your petition through another H1B Lottery. However, the USCIS must approve Form I-129 before commencing your job with the new company. Continue reading the page, but before that we recommend you to take a look at The H1B Visa Lottery - A Quick Guide.

Eligibility Criteria for H1B Transfer

To be eligible for an H1B Transfer, you must fulfill the following criteria:

  • Ensure your new owner submits the H1B Transfer petition on your behalf.
  • Submit the petition before the current employment period expires.
  • Commence working with your new employer from the date mentioned in the H1B Transfer petition. (Although it is best to wait until you receive the written transfer approval).
  • File for Premium Processing if you have terminated your employment with your previous employer before the Transfer.

One of the main criteria is that you should not have violated any visa statuses or conducted any crimes in the US.

How Should you Apply for an H1B Transfer?

If you think you have fulfilled all the eligibility criteria, your new employer can go ahead and apply for the H1B Transfer by:

  • Preparing and filing the Labor Condition Application.
  • Collecting the required documentation.
  • Completing Form I-129 and the USCIS petition.
  • Filing the petition with the USCIS.

The H1B Transfer also requires documentation to prove your identity and H1B validity. Your new employer also has to submit some documents to get the process going. We have given a detailed document checklist to ensure you have them all in order.

Documents Required for H1B Transfer

As an H1B employee, to be eligible to apply for an H1B Transfer, you must first accept the new employment offer when your H1B visa is valid. If the validity has expired, you will have to restart the entire H1B process all over again to obtain an H1B visa. Only then can you apply for your transfer, which, by then, you would have lost a lot of time.

As the H1B beneficiary, you must submit the following documents for change of employer:

  • Copy of the offer letter from your new employer.
  • Copies of a valid passport and H1B visa.
  • Copy of social security card.
  • Copies of your diploma and degree certificates.
  • Copy of Form I-797 and Notice of Action indicating applicant H1B approval.
  • Copy of Form I-94 Arrival and Departure records.
  • Approval copy of Form I-140.
  • University transcripts (in a sealed cover).
  • Copy of W2 tax returns.
  • Academic evaluation (depending on the country, university, and degree that awarded it).
  • 2 or 3 most recent pay stubs.
  • Copies of letters of experience from previous employers (if available).
  • Letters of recommendation (if available).
  • Copy of the State license for medical professionals.

Also Read: H1B Transfer Status & How it Affects your H1B Transfer

Your Employer's H1B Transfer Documents List:

  • Your Labor Condition Application.
  • Employment Eligibility Verification, Form I-9.
  • Petition for Non-Immigrant Worker, Form I-129.
  • Letter with the following details: Remuneration, job title, job duties, signatures of both the employer and the H1B holder.
  • Company's marketing materials and brochures.
  • Detailed job description.
  • Company's annual reports, business plans, financial statements.

Employers in the US are not allowed to hire foreigners without a Labor Condition Application. Employers must file Form ETA9035E to obtain this certification.

LCA certification is to:

  • Ensure that the US employer treats foreign workers fairly by giving them a fair wage.
  • Maintain a good working environment.
  • Ensure that the employer hires lawfully-admitted foreign employees.

Processing Time for H1B Transfer

Generally, the H1B Transfer takes about 1 to 4 months under regular processing. Under Premium Processing, the procedure takes about 15 to 30 days.

Important points to remember:

Never resign from your current employment until your H1B Transfer is approved. You need to wait for four to eight weeks after submitting your H1B Transfer application to the USCIS to process your petition. If your petition is denied, you must stop working immediately because you will be considered "out of status". To avoid being labeled out of status, we suggest waiting until you obtain your approval.

Also, please keep in mind that USCIS has the power to reject or deny your H1B Transfer petition if your employer does not submit all your documents on time. Therefore, please ensure you have all the necessary documents to get your H1B Transfer approved.

TechFetch -  A Treasury of H1B Visa Information

Obtaining a H1B visa is quite a lengthy process. If you are a newbie, the process could be such an annoyance for you. So take your time to visit TechFetch H1B to acquire enough knowledge about the H1B visa process.

**Disclaimer: All H1B visa processing details are subject to change. Kindly refer to the USCIS official website for the latest updates.

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Article by Techfetch H1B team

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