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Maintaining H-1B status

It is your responsibility to understand and comply with the terms of your H-1B status during your stay in the U.S. A violation of the immigration regulations could have serious consequences. Review this information carefully and contact the International Scholars Operations (ISO) team if you have questions.

Report Address Changes

Persons in H-1B and H-4 status must notify U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) of all residential address changes using form AR-11 within 10 days of moving.

Do Not Let Your I-797 Approval Notice Expire

The I-797 Approval Notice allows you to apply for a visa and enter or reenter the U.S. It also establishes your legal eligibility to remain in the U.S. Note that the Approval Notice has an expiration date.
To request an extension, contact your host UW department 7 months prior to that date. Do not assume your department’s administrator will automatically know when it is time to renew your H-1B status.
Be proactive and don’t let your documents expire. Keep every I-797 Approval Notice for your permanent record.

Do Not Let Your I-94 Arrival/Departure Record Expire

Your most recent I-94 record may set a different end date than your H-1B approval notice. Be sure to check your I-94 record after every return to the U.S.; if the period of admission on it will expire before your H-1B approval notice, contact ISO for further guidance.

Work Only in the Job for Which Your H-1B was Approved

Your H-1B status is employer-specific and job-specific and does not allow you to work for any employer other than the UW. If your UW job duties or responsibilities change, including a change in job title or employing department, the University must file an H-1B petition with USCIS before the change becomes effective. If you change employers, the new employer must file a new H-1B petition before you begin working in your new job.

Work Only at Your Approved H-1B Location

Your H-1B status is also location-specific. You may work only at the worksites listed in part G of the Labor Condition Application. Any change in worksite must be authorized in advance. Contact ISO for more information.

Outside Professional Work

Your H-1B does not authorize or allow work (paid or unpaid) for any entity other than UW. You may have opportunities to give lectures at other institutions or conferences. You cannot receive an honorarium or other monetary or material gain for such activities, although reimbursement for travel and reasonable expenses is allowed.

Maintain a Full-Time Job

Your employment at the UW must remain full-time while you are under UW visa sponsorship. The UW does not provide H-1B visa sponsorship for part-time jobs.

On Leave Status

An H-1B employee generally maintains lawful visa status in the U.S. only when maintaining paid employment. Before requesting an unpaid leave, contact ISO.

In general, the University of Washington will grant H-1B employees unpaid leave only for situations required by law, such as Family Medical Leave Act and state Family Care Act (covered leaves).

Any leave granted in these situations must be thoroughly documented in advance.

The University of Washington is not allowed to permit employees to remain in UW-sponsored H-1B status while on a personal, unpaid, non-covered leave.