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H1-F1 conversion / general student visa questions

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H1-F1 conversion / general student visa questions [#permalink] New post 14 Dec 2009, 08:08
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I believe there are many who will need to convert their visa from H1 to F1.Let's use this thread to discuss those details.

Few questions that I have.

1.I did my MS here and used my OPT for few months.Can I get another OPT after MBA? I heard different opinions on this.

2.If I go back home(India),can I save the time on H1 visa?

3.How easy is getting CoS while in USA?
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Re: H1-F1 conversion [#permalink] New post 14 Dec 2009, 08:29
1. You won't get a fresh OPT as the new degree is in same level as your old one (Master's). But if you have some months left in the old OPT, you can utilize that
2. Yes, if you go to India after resigning from here, you will save time on H1. This really is important if you're close to 4years on H1. As new employers would prefer ~2 yrs of H1 time in order to process GC (post MBA).
3. I don't have first hand info of course, but I think this is not a big issue. The only problem with CoS is that you will miss out on overseas treks/trips as you will have to stamp F1 to come back. So it's best to get it done before MBA, so there is no hassle while we are in school.

Class2012 wrote:
I believe there are many who will need to convert their visa from H1 to F1.Let's use this thread to discuss those details.

Few questions that I have.

1.I did my MS here and used my OPT for few months.Can I get another OPT after MBA? I heard different opinions on this.

2.If I go back home(India),can I save the time on H1 visa?

3.How easy is getting CoS while in USA?
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Re: H1-F1 conversion [#permalink] New post 14 Dec 2009, 09:09
I have 9 months unused time on OPT.But I'm short on the H1 side.I used 4.5 yrs so far on my H1.

If I resign and go back now,I might not get a girl. :(
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Re: H1-F1 conversion [#permalink] New post 14 Dec 2009, 09:56
I guess you know your answer then :-)
One suggestion might be to do CoS and go stamp F1 from canada or something during preterm.
Class2012 wrote:
I have 9 months unused time on OPT.But I'm short on the H1 side.I used 4.5 yrs so far on my H1.

If I resign and go back now,I might not get a girl. :(
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Re: H1-F1 conversion [#permalink] New post 14 Dec 2009, 12:23
praz wrote:
2. Yes, if you go to India after resigning from here, you will save time on H1. This really is important if you're close to 4years on H1. As new employers would prefer ~2 yrs of H1 time in order to process GC (post MBA).


Does this apply to L1 too? (the number of years)
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Re: H1-F1 conversion [#permalink] New post 14 Dec 2009, 12:26
So this has nothing to do with the flu?

:rimshot:
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Re: H1-F1 conversion [#permalink] New post 14 Dec 2009, 12:33
PBateman wrote:
So this has nothing to do with the flu?

:rimshot:


Ah well...a flu lasts a few weeks or kill you...U.S. immigration laws make you suffer in seemingly perpetual agony.
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Re: H1-F1 conversion [#permalink] New post 14 Dec 2009, 14:10
praz wrote:
1. You won't get a fresh OPT as the new degree is in same level as your old one (Master's). But if you have some months left in the old OPT, you can utilize that
2. Yes, if you go to India after resigning from here, you will save time on H1. This really is important if you're close to 4years on H1. As new employers would prefer ~2 yrs of H1 time in order to process GC (post MBA).
3. I don't have first hand info of course, but I think this is not a big issue. The only problem with CoS is that you will miss out on overseas treks/trips as you will have to stamp F1 to come back. So it's best to get it done before MBA, so there is no hassle while we are in school.

Class2012 wrote:
I believe there are many who will need to convert their visa from H1 to F1.Let's use this thread to discuss those details.

Few questions that I have.

1.I did my MS here and used my OPT for few months.Can I get another OPT after MBA? I heard different opinions on this.

2.If I go back home(India),can I save the time on H1 visa?

3.How easy is getting CoS while in USA?


for unused OPT, I heard the different thing. Since you have already started your H1B, you do not really need such option for your practical training, meaning you can not apply OPT any longer.
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Re: H1-F1 conversion [#permalink] New post 18 Dec 2009, 10:31
PBateman wrote:
So this has nothing to do with the flu?

:rimshot:


You are funny :lol: :lol:
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International Students @ US B-Schools - Visa Questions [#permalink] New post 16 Feb 2010, 16:40
Hi All,

I am starting this new thread to discuss Visa, GC and OPT options for international students planing to pursue MBA @ B-school in US. Please feel free to post your quesitons/suggestions.
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Re: H1-F1 conversion [#permalink] New post 17 Feb 2010, 07:14
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Class2012 wrote:
I believe there are many who will need to convert their visa from H1 to F1.Let's use this thread to discuss those details.

Few questions that I have.

1.I did my MS here and used my OPT for few months.Can I get another OPT after MBA? I heard different opinions on this.

2.If I go back home(India),can I save the time on H1 visa?

3.How easy is getting CoS while in USA?


1) It's a complex question! Here are some good quotes:

Dartmouth (http://www.dartmouth.edu/~ovis/updates/f1/optfaqs.html):
"Q: Am I eligible for more OPT if I progress to another degree program?
A: Yes. If you begin a new degree program at a higher level (i.e. Bachelor to Masters or Masters to Ph.D.) program, you will become eligible for an addition block of 12-months of OPT as outlined above. You are, however, only eligible for one period of 17 month OPT-extension."

From USCIS website (http://www.uscis.gov/portal/site/uscis/ ... f3d6a1RCRD)

"Note that to be eligible for an OPT extension the student must currently be in an approved post-completion OPT period based on a designated STEM degree. Thus, for example, a student with an undergraduate degree in a designated STEM field, but currently in OPT based on a subsequent MBA degree, would not be eligible for an OPT extension."

From a law firm blog (http://www.avvo.com/legal-answers/f1-to ... 28491.html):
"Normally, you can get 12 months of OPT at the end of each LEVEL of education - meaning you could get a year of OPT at the end of a U.S. Bachelor's degree and then again at the end of a U.S. Master's degree. However, you would not get a second year at the end of another course of study at the same level - another Master's program. You may be able to get back the seven months of this OPT that weren't used at the end of the second Master's, if you can convince USCIS that it wasn't used.

As long as you don't spend a year or more abroad between now and switching back to H-1B, you have 3.5 year left on H-1B once you switch back at the end of the second Master's, PLUS any time spend abroad during the last 2.5 years or those 3.5 years that can be recaptured, PLUS - if you start a green card case and have something on file before the beginning of the sixth year of H-1B time - additional time until processing of the immigrant visa petition and any required prerequisites (such as a PERM case) is complete and an immigrant visa is available for you such that an Adjustment of Status case can be filed."

What I gather from that is:
- If you already used some OPT for previous master's degree (such is my case with a one-year Masters of Engineering), you are not eligible for new 12 months after the MBA.
- Since MBA degree is not part of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, or Mathematics) fields, we are not eligible for extensions, even with a previous STEM degree
- However, you can use remaining H1-B time. The catch here is that to transfer your H1-B, the new job needs to be very similar to the one that issued it to you. I want an MBA to change my career... ha ha ha.
- On a somewhat separate note, I previously did research into studying full-time with a pending I-485 and I-140 approved. What I found out was that as long as my company agrees to continue sponsoring me and gives me an offer letter to come back after completion of my studies on hand, it is possible to go to school and finish getting the green card there. Maybe.

Final advice: MARRY AN AMERICAN. :twisted: :roll: :lol:
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Re: H1-F1 conversion [#permalink] New post 17 Feb 2010, 07:29
Class2012 wrote:
I believe there are many who will need to convert their visa from H1 to F1.Let's use this thread to discuss those details.

Few questions that I have.

1.I did my MS here and used my OPT for few months.Can I get another OPT after MBA? I heard different opinions on this.

2.If I go back home(India),can I save the time on H1 visa?

3.How easy is getting CoS while in USA?


I thought it'd be best if I broke up the answer after the first part ended up being so long and confusing.

2) Unequivocally yes. By the way, if you've been out of the country for a full year, you can apply for a full new 6 years of H1-B. Problem is, then you are subject to the cap again.

3) Change of Status - are you talking about H1 to F1, F1 to H1, or both? H1 to F1 I haven't done yet, but from what I've read it should not be a problem. You just have to provide a letter from your employer stating your last day at work when you file the F1 petition. Exception: if your employer has already filed an I-140 (immigrant visa for you), you have thus demonstrated immigration intent and your F1 will most likely be denied.

F1 to H1 I did after college... back then I had OPT to last me half a year until my H1 application came through. If you don't have OPT, you either must have the new company transfer your old H1 (only possible if it's a similar job and you have some years left on it), or go home after your F1 is over and come back upon receiving an H1 (could be delayed depending on your home consulate).

The application for H1 can be filed in April (and must be, if you want to make it within the cap) and the H1 will then go out in October. I don't know if it's possible to "sit" on H1 by applying in April of your 1st year of MBA, then receiving H1 in October of the 2nd year, and not using it until after graduation in June => Does anybody know?

Hope this helps!
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Re: International Students @ US B-Schools - Visa Questions [#permalink] New post 17 Feb 2010, 11:02
Is it difficult for me to get F1 after my employer has filed a I 140 for me. If anyone has tried to change from H1 to F1 please post your experience. I have heard that it is very likely that my F1 would be denied since I have shown an intent to immigrate. Please answer.
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Re: H1-F1 conversion [#permalink] New post 17 Feb 2010, 11:04
Does anyone know how difficult it is to get F1 after my employer has filed an I 140 on my behalf. Has anyone tried to get an F1 in this situation. Please answer.
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Re: H1-F1 conversion [#permalink] New post 17 Feb 2010, 11:38
Ari123 wrote:
Does anyone know how difficult it is to get F1 after my employer has filed an I 140 on my behalf. Has anyone tried to get an F1 in this situation. Please answer.


Thanks Ari,

thanks for bringing this up ... I am in the same situation adn have heard the same story (f1 deny). Can anybody post their experience.....
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Re: H1-F1 conversion / general student visa questions [#permalink] New post 17 Feb 2010, 12:01
I don't mean to scare you guys but that's what I heard when I was doing research on this few years back.That was the reason I did not apply for GC inspite of pressure from my employer and family.The irony is, had I applied GC at that time,I would be having a EAD by now and my job prospects post-MBA would be much better.But who knows when USCIS moves the priority date.

You guys can contact a good immigration attorney.Maybe you can say that you applied due to pressure from your employer or were part of your spouse's GC application.
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Re: H1-F1 conversion [#permalink] New post 17 Feb 2010, 12:02
snowinTX wrote:
Final advice: MARRY AN AMERICAN. :twisted: :roll: :lol:


Not in this life time. :-D
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Re: H1-F1 conversion / general student visa questions [#permalink] New post 17 Feb 2010, 12:31
Not sure about this but you might be able to attend school on H4/L2 dependent visa.So if your spouse has a H1/L2,convert to a dependent visa.The flipside is you will need a F1 to work on CPT for internship.

If you are not married,get married to a H1 before July. :-D
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Re: H1-F1 conversion / general student visa questions [#permalink] New post 17 Feb 2010, 12:44
Ari123 wrote:
Is it difficult for me to get F1 after my employer has filed a I 140 for me. If anyone has tried to change from H1 to F1 please post your experience. I have heard that it is very likely that my F1 would be denied since I have shown an intent to immigrate. Please answer.


This is one of the most cruel laws of the U.S. immigration. It will be very tough for you to get an F-1, to go to school full-time. One option would be to take a leave of absence or an offer letter for future employment (depends on the stage of your application).

I'm the same boat as you are. This is the main reason, I'm applying to non-U.S. schools or part-time U.S. school. Booth was the only school in the U.S. where I applied full-time, but after its heartless rejection that hope is gone as well.

Class 2012. Consider yourself lucky you didn't apply for a green card.
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Re: H1-F1 conversion [#permalink] New post 17 Feb 2010, 18:47
snowinTX wrote:

- However, you can use remaining H1-B time. The catch here is that to transfer your H1-B, the new job needs to be very similar to the one that issued it to you. I want an MBA to change my career... ha ha ha.


Are you sure about this? Career switchers like me would be screwed.
Re: H1-F1 conversion   [#permalink] 17 Feb 2010, 18:47
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