Change of status from L1A to H1B (Non consular processing)

I currently hold L1A visa with company A and expiring in August 2022 (first 3 year). Now company B is sponsoring my H1B this year and filed petition without consular processing. As per my understanding, my status will change automatically once COS is approved and I must move to company B in H1B status. What are the options now for me to continue working for company A in L1A ? I heard that I can go outside USA (May be to Mexico) and re-enter with my current L1A visa stamp to regain status. Can you please confirm if this option is safe? If so, when should I travel outside USA?

  1. Should I travel and come back before October 1, 2021? (Expected COS date), or
  2. Should I travel and come back after October 1, 2021? (Will there be any issue during re-entry with L1A stamp, since my I94 would have been updated with change of status?)

Just curious to know why you are not planning on filing your green card while you are on L1A and may qualify for EB1C which is current at this time. EB1C dont even require a PERM so you can file I140 & 485 concurrently.

So you dont want to join employer B? If yes, why dont you just inform them and they can withdraw your COS application.

If you leave the US while your COS application is pending, it is deemed to be abandoned and should be ideally denied. You can reenter on L1 status.

I was pushing current company for green card. But they seem to have no interest in filing. That’s the reason I looked for H1B.
I don’t want to join company B. But I want my H1B to be approved. I can use H1B just in case my L1A extension is rejected due to some reason.
So I should travel outside US and come back before petition is approved right. even if COS is denied, still I can get my H1B approved? is there any consequences for my future visa applications if I do so?
Thanks in advance for your reply.

First you need to talk to the immigration lawyer of your employer B to send a withdrawal letter for the COS. The reason being there are instances where USCIS has approved COS even if the beneficiary travelled out of the country with pending COS application. So just relying on travelling and thinking your COS will be denied is not a good idea.

The underlying H1B petition can keep processing while you travel however note that once COS is denied you will need to travel and come back with a H1B visa stamp if you decide for work for employer B. Unless you plan on transferring the H1B to work for a 3rd employer in which case the transfer may or may not be approved under cap-exempt.

Lastly, my suggestion is to travel before 1st October and reenter after 1st Oct, that way in case your COS is approved despite you travelling outside the country and submitting the withdrawal letter, it can be reversed by you entering back on L1 status. Just make sure your to carry all important documents like your L1 I797, valid L1 visa for reentry, employment verification letter from your current employer and last three paystubs.

You must consult an immigration lawyer for your unique situation and follow their advise as I am not an immigration lawyer.

Kalpesh, Thank you so much for your quick replies.
I will sure check with attorney and may opt for travel before 1st October and reenter after 1st Oct, so that I will not disturb COS and H1B processing.
I hope my dependents in USA don’t have to travel with me since visa status change is applicable only to me. Can you please have your views on this?

They dont have to travel if you haven’t applied for their change of status but you need to understand that their status depends on yours. If you switch to H1B they can’t be on L2 and have to change status to H4.

Understand. my intention is to switch back to L1. so my dependent’s status will be the same. Thank you