Early termination by the department before the end date of the H-1B Approval Notice will result in the department being responsible for paying for reasonable cost of return transportation to the home country.
Departments and employees must notify the Office of International Affairs (OIA) of termination, complete an H-1B Departure Form, and submit the form to OIA.
Effective January 17, 2017, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) amended its regulations and issued an action called the “Final Rule” that provides various benefits to H-1B visa holders. It is important to note that there is still no grace period for H-1B visa holders whose employment ends on same ending date of their approval notice, Form I-797. However, the final rule is still consistent with current practice where “Customs and Border Protection officers may annotate a Form I-94 entry stamp in a passport when admitting an individual in H-1B classification to reflect a grace period of up to 10 days at the end of the period of stay.” The final rule goes on to explain that “under existing regulations, DHS does not consider 10-day grace periods to be automatically provided, rather, they are provided through an exercise of discretion on a case-by-case basis.”
One of the most significant changes in the regulations affecting H-1B visa holders relates to those whose employment ends before the validity period of their petition, as listed on the Form I-797, who are now allowed a grace period of 60 days or until the end of the petition’s validity period (or time indicated on I-94), whichever is shorter.
The expressed purpose of the regulation update by DHS is to facilitate the ability of qualified nonimmigrants “to transition to new employment in the United States, seek a change of status, or prepare to depart the United States. Consistent with longstanding policy, DHS declines to authorize individuals to work during these grace periods.”
This is a relatively new H-1B regulation and may contradict previous instruction from our office or from DHS.
If your employment in H-1B visa status at Ohio State ends before the validity period listed on your approval notice (Form I-797), please be aware of the following: