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H-1B or O-1 Employee

Documents Required for Re-Entry to the U.S.

  • Valid passport (Your passport must be valid beyond the approved end date on your I-797; if it is not, when you seek to enter the U.S. you may only be admitted until the end date of your passport, even though your I-797 expires later. This affects dependent status as well.)
  • Valid H-1B / O-1A entry visa (except for Canadian citizens)
  • Valid Approval Notice/Notice of Action: Form I-797
  • Supporting documents including your copies of form I-129, and the Labor Certification Application (LCA) (recommended)
  • Always print your arrival/departure record as soon as possible after entry, and confirm that all the information is accurate.

Travel During Extension Process or Change of Employers

  • If you find that you have to travel outside the U.S. during the H-1B extension process, please contact an employment visa analyst at Bechtel. Leaving the U.S. during the extension process can invalidate the new H-1B extension.
  • If you plan to leave the U.S. and your current H-1B status has expired, you cannot return to the U.S. until the extension application is approved, and the approval notice is sent to you. You will then have to apply for a new H-1B visa stamp before you can return to the U.S.
  • You should not travel outside the U.S. during a pending change of status petition.

Applying for a New Entry Visa

  • If the entry visa in your passport has expired, it does not imply that you are in the US illegally. The entry visa does not determine your legal presence in the US, your actual nonimmigrant status, or your eligibility to be employed.
  • If you plan to travel outside North America and your entry visa has expired, or your nonimmigrant status has changed, you will need a new visa applied to your passport.
  • You may not need a new entry visa if you are traveling to continguous territory and can request automatic revalidation of your expired entry visa.
  • Apply for a new entry visa in the same manner as you did when you initially sought permission to enter the US. Your application is lodged with the US State Department.
  • Entry visas are not issued in the US.
  • Note that the system that takes your entry visa application assumes you are physically present in the jurisdiction of the US consulate you identify in your application. If you are not, followup communications could be confusing. See this page for more information about the entry visa application process.