3.1 Once received, the H-1B petition will be issued a receipt by the USCIS. The I-Center will notify you once the receipt has been received. You may use this receipt to track the progress of the petition at http://www.uscis.gov/. Please note that premium processing cases are often approved before the receipt is received by the I-Center.
3.2 When the H-1B petition approval is received by the I-Center, we will notify the department by e-mail that the form is available for pick up with copies of the I-129 and LCA as filed with the USCIS. In addition, there will be a Distribution Acknowledgement form included with the other forms. The department will then need to pick up the documents from the front desk of the I-Center.
3.3 The department should make copies of the documents for its own records and give the original I-797 approval notice, the I-129 and LCA forms to the employee. The department then should sign the Distribution Acknowledgement form and fax it back to the I-Center at 650.725.0886.
3.3.1 For Employees in the United States Only!
If the employee is currently in the US and was issued an “I-797 A” approval notice with an attached I-94 in the bottom, right hand corner, the employee may begin or resume employment on the date noted on the I-94. If their visa has expired they may remain in the United States working, however they will need a new H-1B visa stamp in their passport before they may return to the US after an absence. The only exceptions are trips to Canada, Mexico or Caribbean nations for stays of 30 days or less.
For instructions on how to obtain a new H-1B visa, please see step 3.4 below.
3.3.2 For Employees Coming from Outside the US Only!
Those employees coming from outside the United States or current employees who were outside the United States at the time of approval will be issued an “I-797 B” approval from the USCIS. This type of approval requires the acquisition of a new, H-1B visa stamp in the passport before the employee may re-enter the US to begin work. This notice is conspicuous because there is no I-94 attached to the form, only a section on the bottom noting the preferred consulate for visa acquisition.
The procedure for obtaining a visa stamp can be found at Step 3.4 below.
3.4 H-1B, TN, H-1B1 and O Portability
3.4.1 For Employees Currently at Stanford and Extending their H-1, TN, H-1B1 or O Status
If the employee is currently at Stanford in H-1B, TN, H-1B1 or O status and they are extending or amending that status, they may remain working in their position for up to 240 days as long as their extension or amendment is received by the USCIS before the expiration of their current status. This regulation does not apply to E-3 visas.
3.4.2 For Employees Transferring from Another Employer and Extending their H-1, TN, H-1B1 or O Status
Employees who are transferring to Stanford from another employer and currently hold H-1B, TN, H-1B1 or O status and will hold the same status at Stanford, may begin work after the requested start date and after the USCIS has receipted their petition. They do not need to wait for the approval. They may also continue to work for up to 240 days after the expiration of their status if their petition was received before the end date of their current status. This regulation does not apply to E-3 visas.
3.4.3 For Employees who are on another non-immigrant status and are changing status to H-1, TN, H-1B1 or O Status.
These employees cannot begin work until their H-1B, TN, H-1B1 or O status is approved by the USCIS and after the requested start date on the petition. If the petition is submitted before the expiration of their current status, they may remain in the US but cannot work past the expiration of their former work authorization until their employment visa is approved.
3.5 Obtaining an H-1B visa stamp.
A valid visa stamp in the passport is required to enter the US unless travelling to Mexico or Canada for thirty days or less. Canadian citizens are exempt from the requirement to obtain a visa stamp. To obtain an H-1B visa stamp, the employee should make an appointment at a US consulate abroad. The employee should be prepared to present the following documents:
You should also be prepared to submit copies of same documentation used to obtain your last H approval.