Urgent clarification needed


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Needed urgent clarification with my current issue please -

My job contract ended (I797 ended as well) and 10 days before my I94 expiry (10th May 2021) I applied for COS to B2. Had the biometrics this week. 

Got a job offer from a company and they are going to start the necessary paperwork for my H1B next week. 
Their company lawyer informed me that I would need to step out of the country before 5th November, 2021 (180 days from H1B I-94 expiry). 
Is this correct? 

If my B2 got approved before 5th November would I still need to step out of the country? Does this B2 comes with an I94? Also can I file for B-2 extension due to COVID-19 situation.

Kindly let me know, thanks 

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When did your job end? You must generally be in status at the time of applying for COS. Your H1b status lasts until 60 days after you left your job, or when your I-94 expires, whichever is first. You told us you filed COS before I-94 expiry, but that doesn't necessarily mean you were in status (e.g. you wouldn't be in status if it had been more than 60 days after you left your job).

If you filed the COS while in status, then you can stay in the US for as long as it is pending, with no time limit. There is no reason why you need to "step out" at any number of days. If you are denied, or are approved for a period that has already ended, you can always just leave at that time. That said, if your COS to B2 hasn't been approved 6 months after your previous status expired, and you want to stay in the US, you should file a second I-539 for EOS of B2, since B2 COS/EOS is only granted in 6-month increments.

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