It’s December which means that many people are heading out of town for the holidays. For immigrants in the United States, that means going home to visit friends and family that you haven’t seen in a long time. If you were in the U.S. when you were approved for a non-immigrant work visa status, you may be wondering what documents you need in order to come back to the U.S. The answer to that question depends on what status you were granted.
Below are some of the common documents needed to re-enter the U.S. with an H-1B visa for the first time. Keep in mind that these are just general documents and you should contact an immigration lawyer about your particular case:
If you are Canadian, you generally just need the I-797 approval notice and recent pay stubs showing that you have been employed since your H-1B was approved.
For citizens of other countries, you will need to get an H-1B visa stamp in your passport before re-entering the U.S. To do this, you will need to schedule a DS-160 appointment with the consulate in your home country. Some of the typical documents you will need to bring to the consulate include:
- Form I-797 approval notice
- I-129 petition and Labor Condition Application
- Updated letter from the employer confirming ongoing employment
- Recent pay stubs
- Passport with at least six (6) months validity
You already got through the hardest part, which was USCIS approving the H-1B petition. Enjoy the holidays!