Difference between H1 petition approval, H1 status and Visa Stamping


What is the difference between the terms, 1. H1 Petition Approval, 2. H1 status Granted and 3. Visa stamped? Consider the situations given below and kindly request you all to help me understand clearly.

Situation A: Beneficiary H1 Petition approved I797 received (Approval Notice) / Visa not stamped due to 221g yellow slip / Never travelled to US.

For the situation A are 1) and 2) both applicable?

If yes could i consider myself cap Counted in the last 6 years assuming my I797 Approval was Aug 2011?

  1. H1 Petition Approval - Your company’s attorney sent the petition to USCIS and they approved it with a I797 approval notice.

  2. H1 status Granted - Once you enter the US on H1 visa you are said to have been granted H1 status.

  3. Visa stamped - Once you attend and clear a visa interview at a consulate your visa is physically stamped on the passport.

For situation A: only 1) is applicable.

Yes you could consider yourself cap counted and hence cap exempt. If you chose to move to a different employer they can use your approved I797 to file for a new H1 which doesn’t need to wait till next year April. If the same employer can reply to uscis with all the required documents mentioned on 221g and if that resolves the issue uscis has with your documents then you can get H1 stamped from current employer itself. Best of luck.

Dear Ankit, Thank you very much for replying quickly. From your reply, i understand that i do not have H1 Status as i have never traveled to US. So from India, i am eligible to apply for H1 Transfer with new Employer under the cap exempt category…is that right? In form I129 there is a section for numerical limitation. under that., “the beneficiary of this petition is countd against the cap and 1)was previously granted H1 status in the past 6 years, 2) is applying from abroad reclaiming the remaining portion of 6 years”…so here you can see it is given as all three conditions need be satisfied…so do you think i satisfy all the three condition for H1 transfer from India?

Hello, you are eligible if either of condition 1 or 2 are met. Basically your h1b is valid for you to work for 6 years in US, those 6 years can be in a continuous stretch or it can be spread across multiple years(as is your case).

Oh Ok…So it is either 1 or 2. I got confused becoz in I129 it was given as 1,2 or 3. So i thought it was both 1 and 2. Now i understood. Thank you Ankit.