Yes, if you were in the US for a total of 6 years – not including business travel days or vacations abroad – then you’ll be required to leave the US for at least one year. We atreceive this question continually and have helped lots of people figure out effective answers, inexpensively.
Here are some exceptions that might help you:
- You have a labor certification that was filed more than 365 days ago that’s been approved AND a pending I-140 (“Green Card”) petition – you’re eligible for a seventh year
- Your employer filed a labor certification that’s been pending for 365 days – you’re eligible for a seventh year
- Your I-140 petition was approved – you’re eligible for a three year extension no matter how long your labor certification has been pending
There are a limited number of other exceptions, so you’re best route is to consult with a knowledgeable immigration lawyer who can help move you skillfully through the process. This is a great investment in yourself since a qualified attorney can add significant value by achieving a more productive and economical result for you.
By the way, the US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) will begin accepting new H-1B quota based visa applications on April 1, 2016. The earliest date to start work on those visas will be October 1, 2016. As a reminder, the cap on regular H-1Bs remains at 65,000 and at 20,000 for US Master Degree H-1Bs.
Feel free to check outto connect with an immigration attorney on-demand or message me directly if I can answer any additional questions you have about H-1B visas, green cards or other related matters. Hope this helps!