I have been working on OPT in F-1 status. Last spring, my employer filed an H1B petition for me, but did not request that my status be changed from F-1 to H1B. Instead, he indicated that I would apply for an H1B visa from outside of the U.S. …

… The H1B petition was approved, but I continued working on OPT and did not leave the U.S. to apply for the visa. A few months ago, I applied for a STEM extension and the USCIS issued an RFE, saying that my SEVIS record was terminated because my H1B petition was approved. This was news to me, as I did not think that the approval of my H1B petition without changing my status would terminate my F-1. I would like to travel to my home country next month for two weeks. What should I do?


It appears that the USCIS terminated your SEVIS record in error. You should contact your DSO and ask that s/he submit a data fix request to the SEVP HelpDesk to activate your SEVIS record based on the approval of your H1B for consular processing of your visa. If your SEVIS record is activated before your reentry, your F-1 visa is still valid, and you have a valid EAD at the time you reenter the U.S., you should be able to gain admission in F-1 status to continue working on OPT. However, if you would like to come back in H1B status ,and the job for which the petition was filed is still available without a change, then you can apply for an H1B visa at a U.S. consulate abroad and reenter the U.S. in H1B status. (23.Jan.2015)

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