[Work start date]Filing new H1B and pregnancy

My wife(on H4 in US) has found a H1B sponsor.
But, due to pregnancy (expecting in September), she can’t start work before Jan 1, 2014
Also Jan 1 to April 1, she would prefer wfh(work from home) job(or once/twice a month to office) OR job very near to the home
She can go to any office fulltime from April 1, 2014
Since its hard to find wfh jobs(or with constraints) and if she isn’t able to find such a job, is it easy to convert to H4 and then go back to H1B once she finds a job?

Possible solutions
1. Filing H1B in July instead of April 1, 2013 so that she can start work from Jan 1, 2014  (risky if H1B cap gets over before July. Is there any prediction for this year as to when can the cap get over? Can we get expected number of LCA's filed? I know LCA doesnt necessarily mean H1B but if LCA before April 1 is less than 60K number, it does mean cap wont get over in first week of April)

2. Loss of Pay for 3-6 months. Allowed on H1B without employer bearing any expenses?

3. Is there any amendment to have a different work start date?
Please provide best solution in which employer wont have to worry a lot and staying in US  with legal status is possible
  1. H1 this year might get over within few weeks, please have a look at the latest article on the main blog.

  2. Leave without pay is allowed.

  3. Actually the petitioner can request the start date while filing H1 petition. So if the employer is puting in the start date as 1st Jan or 1st Feb your wife can still stay on H4 and her status would only change to H1 from the start date mentioned in the petition.

Best of luck !!

Thanks Ankit,
Are you sure about #3?
I have been told that LCA can only be filed 6 months before the start date
So, if we file for H1B on April 1, 2013, then start date has to be Oct 1 (not beyond it)
So, what you are saying is that we can request for start date of March 1, 2014 if we cant to? Any links to verify the information?

afaik LCA does not have a start date. It is mentioned on the petition at the time of filing. And I am not too sure about LCA not being allowed to be filed prior to 6 months. I mean if you think about it people filing on 1st April have their lca’s done in mid march(for a start date of October 1 which is greater than 6 months). But this is just my understanding that the start date can be any date requested by the employer.

I would let senior members answer this.

H1 cap is expected to get over within one week
Also, I believe if we dont file for change of status(from H4 and H1B) and only file the h1b petition, then when h1b petition is approved, change of status can be applied anytime after Oct 1 and when H1B status is approved, she would be on H1B and legally allowed to work. In case COS is denied, she remains on H4
Please confirm if this is true and there is no need to go outside country to get change of status. I know that if a person goes out of country, only then stamping is needed

LCA can be filed at most 183 days in advance.

What you can do is have H-1 filed w/ consular processing (employer needs to be on-board for this). Even after the petition gets approved, she will remain on H-4 status. When she is ready to join work, she can file a separate COS from H-4 to H-1 or enter US on stamped H-1 visa. The original H-1 petition will still have a start date of Oct 1 but won’t become active until COS has been approved or she enters on stamped H-1 visa.

Thanks Saurabh
What do you mean by Employer needs to be onboard?

Employer is in US
If I understood you correctly
She can first get her H1B approved without placing a request for change of status
When she is ready to work, we can file a COS from H4 to H1B. Once its approved, she can start working…
So, this can be done without leaving the country…Right?

When employer files H-1 for you, they expect you to join on a set date. They are already waiting for you for 6 months and some may prefer not to wait indefinitely. When filing w/o COS, there is no actual start date mentioned, so employer will have to agree to this plan.

Yes, you understood it correctly. This all can be done w/o leaving US.

Hi, Did you find solution to this? I am also in the same situation and my employer has filed my H1b.

Hi sancusa,

Can you please tell me did you get a solution for this condition? I am on the same situation and planning to file my H1B this year. Had your wife applied H1B last year and if H1B got approved then when she has joined the job ? Is she able to take leave on H1B? Can you please share your experience?
It would really be a great help for me.


You should talk to your employer about the situation. If the employer really wants to hire you, they can work out a solution. Possible solution would be to file H-1 w/o COS from H-4 to H-1 (I assume you are already inside US on H-4). Later, when you are ready to join the work, you can file COS from H-4 to H-1 on the already approved H-1 petition or enter US on stamped H-1 visa.