L1B - H1B change of status clarifications


This question is regarding L1B - H1B change of status.


I currently work in the US for company A (an IT farm) with L1B visa which is going to max out very late this year (not before Oct). Both my L1 and I-94 is valid till that date. I'd been planning to switch to H1B and company B (a consultancy) had agreed to sponsor H1. However company A is now also planning to file an H1B petetion (as a Change of Status) for me this year. With that, I'd a few questions and will like suggestions:


1. The representative from Company B recommended that I go through with the H1B process of Company A only - as it is not recommended to apply separately. Once it is approved - a employer change can be applied for. Is that a good suggestion? 

2. I understand the change of status will be applicable only from October 1st - and irrespective of Company A or Company B (or both) applies for my H1B - I can only switch companies and start working on H1 after 1 Oct. I can work for no other company that company A (which will be with my L1) till 1 Oct. Is that correct?

3. If I quit company A while the H1B petition is pending with USCIS (and go back to my home country) - will the petition be automatically withdrawn or rejected? is there any chance of changing my employer to Company B in that case?

4. What happens if I quit Company A after the approval but before 1 Oct?

5. Lastly - I've been told that I should not travel outside US while the application is pending. I needed some elaboration on that - will it mean that the COS will be abandoned, but the petition will still be valid?  If I travel after 1 Apr and come back (with my L1) before the approval/after the approval but before 1 Oct- can I still switch companies later? Can company B apply for change of employer while I'm outside US and I can start with them in Oct?


Thanks a lot in advance for your comments. I hope I've been explicit enough with my questions - if not apologies and let me know where!


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