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H1-F1 conversion / general student visa questions

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Re: H1-F1 conversion / general student visa questions [#permalink] New post 08 Apr 2010, 19:21
Ari123 wrote:
Do consulate people answer questions on the phone?


Never heard of anything as such.If you have some specific questions,you can post in immihelp or murthy forums.
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Re: H1-F1 conversion / general student visa questions [#permalink] New post 09 Apr 2010, 05:36
I think some consulates charge a fee for consultation on the phone.

To journey, here is an interesting entry about visa-stamping in Canada at one of the immigration law websites I keep an eye on (http://www.cilawgroup.com/news/2010/04/ ... in-canada/):

"Warnings for TCN Visa Applications in Canada
April 03rd, 2010 | Category: Articles, H-1B, News, Policy, Visa Processing

Generally, the U.S. Department of State likes to process visas at the consulate located at the applicant’s home country. Howevre, U.S. consulates in Mexico and Canada have the practice of allowing third-country nationals (TCN) to apply for a U.S. visa stamp in addition to their home country. However, recent AILA interactions with the Department of State Canadian missions have provided some cautionary notes.

First, U.S. consular posts in Canada are increasingly refusing to issue visas under INA 221(g) in cases where the H-1B visa applicant has a foreign (non-U.S.) degree and who does not have a previous H-1B stamp issued by the U.S. consulate in their home country. This practice is dictated mainly by a concern about increasing fraud with foreign diplomas.

Second, U.S. consulates in Canada generally discourage TCNs from applying at Canadian U.S. consular posts if they last entered the U.S. in visitor status.

While these announcements are not change in policy, it is important that we share them with our clients and readers as we encounter, on a daily basis, a number of inquiries about the feasibility of obtaining a U.S. visa stamp in Canada. These notes should certainly provide examples of cases where a visa application should not be submitted in Canada. The notes do not seem to include Mexico, although we suspect that the U.S. consulates in Mexico may trend similarly to their counterparts in Canada."
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Re: H1-F1 conversion / general student visa questions [#permalink] New post 09 Apr 2010, 07:23
I am in the same boat as a lot of people in this forum. Admit from a school and I140 approved.
After talking to numerous lawyers, students (who were in the same position last year), officials from the international center at the University that I am matriculating from and people in this forum.

I came to the conclusion that the granting of COS to F1 or the F1 visa is very much dependant on the interpretation of the law by the VO presiding over your case.
There are two possible actions that I can take:

1. Do the COS to F1 first, complete 6 months or a year of the course and then go for a visa stamp.
2. Get the F1 visa stamp before the course begins.

I am planning to take the first route.

Withdrawing the I140:
The I140 becomes invalid as soon as you decide to leave your job. Most companies will withdraw the application once you are no longer employed with them. I am planning to make sure that the company lawyer sends a withdrawal for I-140 when I leave the company. I will also try to get a letter or a copy of the withdrawal application as proof.

Applying for COS:
In the COS application, you will need to specify that an immigration petition was applied on your behalf. You will also need to attach a letter explaining this. You will also need to provide proof of funding and admission to school (I20).
In addition to all the above, I am planning to attach letter explaining my situation. I will attach a proof of withdrawal of I140 and also about resigning from my company.

Thats about it! :)

P.S.: Does anybody know if we can withdraw the I140 application ourselves or do we need to go through a lawyer?
P.P.S.: Please do post your strategies. Thanks!
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Re: H1-F1 conversion / general student visa questions [#permalink] New post 09 Apr 2010, 09:32
gateway10 wrote:
I am in the same boat as a lot of people in this forum. Admit from a school and I140 approved.
After talking to numerous lawyers, students (who were in the same position last year), officials from the international center at the University that I am matriculating from and people in this forum.

I came to the conclusion that the granting of COS to F1 or the F1 visa is very much dependant on the interpretation of the law by the VO presiding over your case.
There are two possible actions that I can take:

1. Do the COS to F1 first, complete 6 months or a year of the course and then go for a visa stamp.
2. Get the F1 visa stamp before the course begins.

I am planning to take the first route.

Withdrawing the I140:
The I140 becomes invalid as soon as you decide to leave your job. Most companies will withdraw the application once you are no longer employed with them. I am planning to make sure that the company lawyer sends a withdrawal for I-140 when I leave the company. I will also try to get a letter or a copy of the withdrawal application as proof.

Applying for COS:
In the COS application, you will need to specify that an immigration petition was applied on your behalf. You will also need to attach a letter explaining this. You will also need to provide proof of funding and admission to school (I20).
In addition to all the above, I am planning to attach letter explaining my situation. I will attach a proof of withdrawal of I140 and also about resigning from my company.

Thats about it! :)

P.S.: Does anybody know if we can withdraw the I140 application ourselves or do we need to go through a lawyer?
P.P.S.: Please do post your strategies. Thanks!

I asked my company lawyer to withdraw my I 140. She sent me a copy of the withdrawal letter and the print out of the Fedex receipt. It is a simple letter( just 3-4 lines) and says that the company is withdrawing the petition. I am not sure if you can withdraw it yourself. Why not just ask the company lawyer?
Gateway10: Were you able to meet anyone who was in this situation and got the F1 or COS? I met one person whose COS was rejected ( note that he had not withdrawn his I 140). Till now I have not met anyone who was able to successfully get the F1 or COS in this situation.
You are right about the fact that once we leave the company anyways the company will withdraw the I 140.

Last edited by Ari123 on 09 Apr 2010, 11:20, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: H1-F1 conversion / general student visa questions [#permalink] New post 09 Apr 2010, 10:50
I did talk to a person who was in the same situation last year and successfully got a F1 visa. She had an I-140 approved while applying for the visa.

According to her, she knew many people at different stages of the GC process and who had successfully gotten their visas. She also mentioned that there is no point in withdrawing the I140 since if the VO wants to use it against you, they can.

She was asked just one question during her interview, mainly about funding.

There are many successful cases out there. Reach out to the current students in your school to find out from people who were in similar situations last year. Talk to the officials at the international center at the university you are planning to join. I am sure you are not the first person in this situation that they are dealing with.

What did happen to your friend who got the COS denied? Did he/she join the school?

Asking the company lawyer to withdraw I-140:
I wanted to do that but did not, since I assumed that if I do tell the lawyer to do that now, he might inform the company about my decision. This might lead the company management to think I am not planning to stick around and might ask me to leave sooner. Since I am applying for COS, I want to maintain the H1B status till 30 days prior to beginning of classes.
I am not sure if this is the right decision, but I am open to advice .
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Re: H1-F1 conversion / general student visa questions [#permalink] New post 09 Apr 2010, 11:02
gateway10 wrote:
I did talk to a person who was in the same situation last year and successfully got a F1 visa. She had an I-140 approved while applying for the visa.

According to her, she knew many people at different stages of the GC process and who had successfully gotten their visas. She also mentioned that there is no point in withdrawing the I140 since if the VO wants to use it against you, they can.

She was asked just one question during her interview, mainly about funding.

There are many successful cases out there. Reach out to the current students in your school to find out from people who were in similar situations last year. Talk to the officials at the international center at the university you are planning to join. I am sure you are not the first person in this situation that they are dealing with.

What did happen to your friend who got the COS denied? Did he/she join the school?

Asking the company lawyer to withdraw I-140:
I wanted to do that but did not, since I assumed that if I do tell the lawyer to do that now, he might inform the company about my decision. This might lead the company management to think I am not planning to stick around and might ask me to leave sooner. Since I am applying for COS, I want to maintain the H1B status till 30 days prior to beginning of classes.
I am not sure if this is the right decision, but I am open to advice .

Thanks for bringing the thread alive. That person finally attended school on H1. I cant do that because I have only one year left on my H1.
I had talked to the international office and the consultant advised me to withdraw the I 140. Anyways I thought even if it helps my case by 5% I will do it.
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Re: H1-F1 conversion / general student visa questions [#permalink] New post 09 Apr 2010, 11:29
I am not sure, how some one can attend a full time program on H1B status?

There are students at Ross who were in a similar sitaution last year. Do reach out to them. I am sure they can give you good advice.

You/company will need to eventually withdraw the I140. The proof of withdrawal will be helpful during the application of COS to F1/F1 visa.
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Re: H1-F1 conversion / general student visa questions [#permalink] New post 13 Apr 2010, 06:31
Bumping the thread.

Sorry I was offline for some time.

AFA withdrawing the I-140 goes: I dont know if this is good approach or not. I talked to my lawyer and he said - rules have been changed and now companies has no benifit or harm in withdrawing your I-140. So if you are leaving your company in good terms chances are they may not even withdraw your I-140. I have not yet decided as to what approach I will be taking ... i will keep you guys posted.
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Re: H1-F1 conversion / general student visa questions [#permalink] New post 15 Apr 2010, 12:02
@praz, vishwa, rao, dreamchasers and others; so, what is the consensus guys? I have been researching on this whole I-140 approved, applying for F1 thing for quite some time now. Obviously, I'm in the same boat; the only difference is that I'm targetting the class of 2011-13. So, unlike most of you, I've some time to ponder over it and plan carefully. I've been getting too many conflicting suggestions so far. The funny thing is, even the so called attorneys and lawyers too are divided in their opinions. Please post your experiences, advises, poa. As admits, you guys should have access to a vast pool of people who would have already gone through it.

Going through this post, and numerous others across various forums, this is what I've compiled so far and following is my planned course of action. What do you guys think?

My background: An Indian currently in US on L1B, approved I-140, planning for the class of 2011-2013, not really interested in GC over bschool.

1. Withdraw I-140 around the time I submit bchool apps. By then, I'll have pretty much clarity of where I'll be placed and also to give enough time for my new non-immigrant intent!). Irrespective of the outcome, I'm ready to give up my GC process. I've enough of L1 years left in the worst case scenario and have never been that interested in GC anyway; don't ask me why I applied for it in the first place :-) I'm regretting now.
2. Provided everything goes fine and am through the admission process by early Jan/Feb, go on a vacation to home country by early May and apply for F1.
a. If I get F1, resign in India, serve the notice period there and return to US around orientation time
b. If I don't get F1, return to US as if nothing happened and continue
3. I'm thinking of avoiding COS for three reasons:
i. It takes around 2.5 to 3 months. I will have no clarity for those 3 months
ii. As soon as COS is approved, I'll have to stop working and if that happens anytime sooner than expected, I'll anyway have to leave the country and consequently get F1 stamped
iii.I don't want to be hostage of this whole crap while in school. You can plan not to leave the country while studying, but you never know when you may need to do so for something beyond your control. What if you are out of US half way through the course and while returning your F1 stamping gets rejected. You are doomed.
4. As an alternative, I'm also thinking of applying to few schools outside of US...Europe, Canada, includes India :-)

Please advise!
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Re: H1-F1 conversion / general student visa questions [#permalink] New post 26 Apr 2010, 04:58
No one out there with any comments/suggestions? praz, vishwa, dreamchasers, rao, ari123 - wonder whether you guys are still around.
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Re: H1-F1 conversion / general student visa questions [#permalink] New post 26 Apr 2010, 07:21
nitin0505 wrote:
No one out there with any comments/suggestions? praz, vishwa, dreamchasers, rao, ari123 - wonder whether you guys are still around.


Nitin,

There are just so many things going on right now. loan, work, exit plans, moving etc. Since you still have time. I would say wait and watch. I am still stuck with my work and havn't put nay more thoughts on this yet. I am hoping that i will be able to give you folks my plans of executionin a couple of weeks. I am assuming that other ppl ar eon the same boat as well. so may be by next couple of weekend somebody will be able to make comments.
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Re: H1-F1 conversion / general student visa questions [#permalink] New post 26 Apr 2010, 07:50
rao wrote:
nitin0505 wrote:
No one out there with any comments/suggestions? praz, vishwa, dreamchasers, rao, ari123 - wonder whether you guys are still around.


Nitin,

There are just so many things going on right now. loan, work, exit plans, moving etc. Since you still have time. I would say wait and watch. I am still stuck with my work and havn't put nay more thoughts on this yet. I am hoping that i will be able to give you folks my plans of executionin a couple of weeks. I am assuming that other ppl ar eon the same boat as well. so may be by next couple of weekend somebody will be able to make comments.


Thanks Rao for dropping in. I understand there must be so many moving parts right now. I will wait for you guys to post your experience (esp regarding I-140) once you are done with all of these. In the meantime, Good Luck!
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Re: H1-F1 conversion / general student visa questions [#permalink] New post 03 May 2010, 12:47
Just bumping the thread. Please post your updates.
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Re: H1-F1 conversion / general student visa questions [#permalink] New post 17 May 2010, 11:13
Any news? Has anyone started the CoS process?
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Re: H1-F1 conversion / general student visa questions [#permalink] New post 05 Jun 2010, 09:18
hi everyone!

I just read this thread, and am hoping to get some candid advice from the folks here.

I am a non-US citizen living in the US with a H1B work permit. Unfortunately, I only have just over 6 months left on my 6-year H1. I am planning to apply to US B-schools this fall, but am very concerned about my post-MBA employability given that my H1 is almost about to expire. As I see it, I have a few choices:
1. Stay out of the US for a year, and re-enter with a F1. This would reset my H1 to 0 years. However, this has the disadvantage of not being able to visit schools this fall.
2. Let my H1 expire, get an F1 and hope that companies will sponsor a GC soon after graduation. This is a worrisome option, since I do not personally know of anyone for whom this has worked. Not sure if this should really be an option or not :(

Can an international MBA student who's gone through the recruiting process please comment on this? Or, anyone who has experience/knows of someone in a similar situation?
I really don't want to be delusional about my chances when I'm going to be in debt at the end of 2013 :-)

Thanks a lot in advance!
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Re: H1-F1 conversion / general student visa questions [#permalink] New post 05 Jun 2010, 18:37
metalhead wrote:


The best option would be to stay outside of US for an year and get your H1 reset.
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Re: H1-F1 conversion / general student visa questions [#permalink] New post 06 Jun 2010, 20:52
Here is my update - I decided it would be best to try from India. Personal reasons aside, it made more common sense for me to leave my job and I am now safely back home :lol:
MIT has not sent me an I20 yet but I plan to apply at the Mumbai consulate. If someone else has experience or appointment please let me know.
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Re: H1-F1 conversion / general student visa questions [#permalink] New post 11 Jun 2010, 10:12
Any update from guys who are doing CoS? I'm planning to apply next week and resign by 06/26.
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Re: H1-F1 conversion / general student visa questions [#permalink] New post 25 Jul 2010, 17:24
This is an interesting topic, and relevant to most foreigners working in the US before applying to Business School.

My question is - how much time should one have on their H1B when going into business school - so that employers would find the person attractive and would have enough time to start processing for a Green Card.

Thanks!!
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Re: H1-F1 conversion / general student visa questions [#permalink] New post 27 Jul 2010, 15:21
senseq wrote:
This is an interesting topic, and relevant to most foreigners working in the US before applying to Business School.

My question is - how much time should one have on their H1B when going into business school - so that employers would find the person attractive and would have enough time to start processing for a Green Card.

Thanks!!



As such there is no hard rule. IMO - It is good to have ~2+ years left on your H1
Re: H1-F1 conversion / general student visa questions   [#permalink] 27 Jul 2010, 15:21
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