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thums123

Passport renewal when H1B petition is filed

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Hi,

My company is planning to apply for H1B petition (Currently LCA has been posted and waiting for 10 day cool off) by April end or May 1st week. My passport is going to expire on 05/15/2013 and I want to renew the same on May 16th this year. This is my first H1B and I will go back for Consular processing for VISA by June 3rd week.

Can you please let me know if it is ok to renew the passort on May 16th 2012 when the H1B petition is in progress? My company is going to file this as normal processing and there is no way the petition will be filed in Premium.

Kindly comment.

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There should not be any problem. However, I do not understand why you want to be in hurry. Once you get H1B approval/stamp in current passport then after you can apply for new passport. In that case, you visa stamped in old passport will also be valid & you need to carry two passports(old/new).

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Thanks so much for the reply. I was told that in general H1B VISA will be provided till Passport expiry and probably I-94 as well based on passport/VISA expiry and need to file an extension again.

Also my current passport address is in a different district altoether than the place am residing and I was told that renewing the passport here in Indian consulate is hassle free. I am leaving by june 3rd week and need to go for stamping on Oct 1st week, so thought of using new passport when filing details for the H1B-VISA and hope since the passport expiry happens after 10 years will get a longer VISA (petition is for 3 years) and I-94 as a result.

Please advice.

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There should not be any problem. However, I do not understand why you want to be in hurry. Once you get H1B approval/stamp in current passport then after you can apply for new passport. In that case, you visa stamped in old passport will also be valid & you need to carry two passports(old/new).

I heard that, if you go for h-1b stamping, you will get the expiration date of 3 yrs if passport is valid for 3 yrs. if your passport is expiring in less than 3 yrs, you H-1b end date will be your passport expiration date.

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I heard that, if you go for h-1b stamping, you will get the expiration date of 3 yrs if passport is valid for 3 yrs. if your passport is expiring in less than 3 yrs, you H-1b end date will be your passport expiration date.

WRONG.

I'll give you my example only to clarify your doubts. For the first time H1B, my passport's expiry was in 2010 but H1B visa stamp was valid till 2011. So, it is totally wrong that VISA STAMP VALIDITY IS BASED ON PASSPORT EXPIRY.

Second, I-94 expiry will be based on Passport expiry or Visa stamp expiry which ever comes first.

@thums123

I would suggest get your H1B in PP, so you will get H1B approval before 15th May, if you file before 1st May & in case without RFE. Once you get H1B approval, go ahead & file for new passport in Fast processing at whichever consulate is applicable to your location. For fast processing you need to pay around $150 extra but you can get new passport in 2-3 working day. You're right, passport hassle is very very less in US compare to India, so, better to get new passport from here only :).

So, when you go for stamping in India on your visa stamp will be in new passport & I-94 will be based on Visa stamp validity.

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@thums123

Another thing, there is not waiting period required for 10 days for LCA. Rule is you need to keep it posted for atleast 10 days at client site. However you can file LCA on the same day you post the requirement at client side.

I do not know why your company is waiting for 10days.

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Thanks for the clear cut reply Sameer.

One clarification though:- My company has decided not to approve for Premium processing. So we will be filing in normal processing. So am expecting the approval/RFE/rejection to happen after couple of months. In the meanwhile can I go for passport renewal in fast processing (Tatkal) after May 15th when H1B is pending? You had already clarified that it is not a problem but want to reconfirm for my satisfaction. Thanks for the wonderful support.

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Thanks for the clear cut reply Sameer.

One clarification though:- My company has decided not to approve for Premium processing. So we will be filing in normal processing. So am expecting the approval/RFE/rejection to happen after couple of months. In the meanwhile can I go for passport renewal in fast processing (Tatkal) after May 15th when H1B is pending? You had already clarified that it is not a problem but want to reconfirm for my satisfaction. Thanks for the wonderful support.

If company is not paying for your PP, you can pay for your Premium processing ?

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If you're in US then I would suggest get new passport in fast processing around your 1year of passport expiration, so, you'll get it in 2-3 days & then apply for H1B. And I don't think till than H1B will be filled. It should take time similar to last year.

Or pay for H1B Premium Processing which is more costly, $1250.

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