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CIhere

Non Profit Volunteering while on H1B

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Hello,

Is it OK to volunteer at a Non Profit (Micro-finance or Micro-enterprise based) in the US (in person) or in India (online) while currently on an H1 B? Currently working as an IT analyst.

Some documentation online mentioned that non profit volunteering while on an H1 B is OK if the volunteering activity is not aligned with the current job role (IT analyst in my case).

Thanks!

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Hello,

Is it OK to volunteer at a Non Profit (Micro-finance or Micro-enterprise based) in the US (in person) or in India (online) while currently on an H1 B? Currently working as an IT analyst.

H1B workers can generally perform volunteer services in a position that would typically be filled by a volunteer. For instance, if an H1B worker goes every Saturday to serve food at a homeless shelter (a position that is frequently filled by other volunteers,) this would generally be ok.

Some documentation online mentioned that non profit volunteering while on an H1 B is OK if the volunteering activity is not aligned with the current job role (IT analyst in my case).

This is not correct. If an H1B worker is working in a position handling micro-financing services, s/he may still be able to perform volunteer services for, say, a non-profit organization that regularly has volunteers assisting with such activites.

Please note, however, that this issue frequently comes up in the context of H1B workers wishing to serve as a "volunteer" for h/er own start up or a friend's start up. Volunteer services in such situations would understandably be closely scrutinized by the government (regardless of whether the business is located here or abroad.)

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