TN1 to H-1B, Reentry is required to update status


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Hi there, I am Canadian, and worked at LA with my family using TN1. I got H-1B approved effective Oct 1. The attorney of my employer told me that she applied straight H-1B on behalf of me early this year, and I would have to leave US then reentry to change my status from TN1/TB to H-1B/H-4. I asked the attorney if I could apply within US, because I had no vacation days left and no plan for travel. I hadn't received reply yet. Guess it means a NO.

I would like to know if it is a MUST for me to reentry US to change my status. If it is a MUST, is it a good idea to choose a port close to my work place, say the border close to San Diego, instead of the border with Canada? This way I can drive there and hopefully come back the same day. BTW, what kind of documents shall I provide? I have I-797B for me, I94s of TN/TB for my whole family, valid passports, employment letter, tax return 2013. Anything else?

BTW, my attorney also told me she submitted PERM on behalf of me to DOL today. Will the officer at border ask me why I want to switch from TN1 to H-1B? Shall I tell him that I am applying for PERM eventually toward green card?

Thank you very much!


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