If I get selected for H1-B, is it considered as change of status therefore on legal stay?

My I-94 as a tourist will end on June 8, 2016. I only have a few weeks left to decide whether to extend my current visa (B2 extension for another 6 months) or wait for a notice if I’m selected or not. I was hoping to wait in the country if ever I am selected, and if I am, does being selected for H1-B means I am in status despite my initial I-94 will expire? Then I don’t have to file an extension? What can I do?

There is a good chance that RFE would be issued to show proof of status b/w Jun 8 and Oct 1. So you should apply for B-2 extension now in order to tackle that RFE.

So being selected in the lottery won’t mean that I’m in status? I got a notion that if you’re on the process of change of status the I-94 will be extended until a decision is made?

I-94 is automatically extended if there is continuity of I-94. Let me give few examples:

  1. You are on H-4 with I-94 expiring on Mar 1. Timely extension is filed and it gets approved on April 1. This new I-94 will still have a start date of Mar 1. So you maintain continuity and are considered in status b/w Mar 1 and Apr 1.

  2. You are on B-1 and H-1 COS is applied. B-1 I-94 expires on Jun 8 and H-1 COS gets approved for an effective date of Oct 1 (that’s the earliest date). In this case, there is no valid I-94 b/w Jun 8 and Oct 1, and so I-94 continuity is broken. This is why USCIS would issue RFE asking for proof of status b/w Jun and Oct, which can be done through B-1 extension filing.

Makes sense?

Got it. Thank you Saurabh.

But if I file B2 extension as tourist, they’ll ask for a reason why… can I say that I’m waiting for USCIS decision on my H1-b or just say that I want to travel more? Or can I put in both?

I am not sure if the extension will affect my H1-B application in any way or if extending B2 and having an H1-B application at the same time will violate any terms of my B2 visa? (I don’t want to lose my multiple entry B2 Visa)

I hope I am able to extend my question clear.
Thank you so much Saurabh!

You are correct. Your B-2 extension may be subject to questioning about the purpose. And if you say the purpose is to stay through H-1 approval, then that would reduce chances of B-2 approval.

Why don’t you leave US, and then return on stamped H-1 visa once it has been approved?