I am on F1 visa. However I am getting a job offer and I want to drop F1 and accept the offer. The employer is ready to file H1b visa. Since it is for a higher educational institution, it is cap exempt. The paper work and finger printing checks will take at least 4 to 6 weeks. However my employer wants an employee from August 5th. Can I work voluntary without benefits till my H1b is approved? If the H1b application is filed and pending aorund August 25th, do I have to join Fall semester at school to be in status or is it automatic while application is pending? I am not eligible for cpt or opt.