How long does the recipet at USCIS valid?


Way back in the year 2008/09, I got the approval for H1B. But due to some unaviodable reasons , I coudnt go to the stampings.

Can same reciept number be used now to file an H1B ?


An employer can file cap-exempt petition for you using that old approved petition. Once approved, you can appear for stamping. You don’t need to go through the cap again.

Hello Saurabh,

Thanks a lot for your answer.

Further to your answer I have few more queries, hope you have the answer for them.

  1. My old petition in the year 2008 was filed by a company for eg: ABC Corp. I tried contacting them, but I did not got any reply from them. I think they are no more dealing with the consulting business. Now my question is, “Can some other company eg : XYZ Corp file an H1B now , by using the old petition raised by a different company ?”

  2. In the above case what all documents might be needed to file an cap-exempt petition ?. I only have the USCIS receipt number. Would this be enough ?

  3. How do I verify if my USCIS receipt number is still valid ? Is there any policy documentation which says the receipt number is valid for 6 years? I checked the status in the USCIS website (Status Tracker) and it displays the following
    "Post Decision Activity

On July 1, 2008, we mailed you a notice that we have approved this I129 PETITION FOR A NONIMMIGRANT WORKER. Please follow any instructions on the notice. If you move before you receive the notice, call customer service at 1-800-375-5283.

For approved applications/petitions, post-decision activity may include USCIS sending notification of the approved application/petition to the National Visa Center or the Department of State. For denied applications/petitions, post-decision activity may include the processing of an appeal and/or motions to reopen or reconsider and revocations.

  1. Yes
  2. Best is to have the copy of approved petition. If not, you can still use the receipt number and print-out of online status showing the petition as approved.
  3. That petition is no longer valid and has long expired. But you can use it for cap-exempt filing purpose. In other words, it cannot be used by itself but can be used as a reference for cap-exempt purpose.

Thanks Saurabh.

So by filing the petition using the cap-exempt, one may not wait till October to start working in US right ??
In other words, if I get my VISA stamped in the month of June 2013, I can start working immediately right ? (without waiting till Oct 2013)

Correct. You can enter US soon after getting it stamped and start working for the H-1 employer in case of cap-exempt petition.