The end of work authorization for F-1 cap-gap students with pending H-1B petitions was September 30th, 2018. These students risk accruing unlawful presence if they continue to work on or after October 1st, 2018. The punishment for accruing a significant amount of unlawful presence can be severe. Six months to one year of unlawful presence can result in a 3-year bar from entering the United States, while even one additional day after the first year can result in a 10-year bar. To avoid this, students should contact their H-1B petitioners and have their employer or counsel file an expedite request with USCIS by calling Customer Service at 1-800-375-5283 citing “severe financial loss to a company or person” because of an inability to earn a salary from October 1st, 2018. Although, USCIS has allocated additional resources to cap-gap cases, expediting is not always guaranteed. GLF advises students to remain in lawful status even if the expedite request is denied. If possible, students should not depart the country until their H-1B case is decided.

GLF will continue to follow further developments in this matter and we will provide updates through our Newsletter as and when they become available.

GLF receives numerous emails and phone calls every day asking for comment on various proposed bills and media reports that are often inaccurate. It is our job to separate fact from fiction and advice clients on important updates that are relevant. The best way to receive accurate information is through GLF Newsletters. We encourage you (and your employees) to sign up for GLF Newsletter. If you are not already signed up to receive our Newsletters, please do so by visiting and signing up under the Newsletter Tab. All we need is your name and email address and it takes very little time to sign up. You can also review all of our earlier GLF Newsletters on our website.

Posted in: Newsletter