H4 Visa to H1B Visa – My Experience

Raghuram Sukumar USA Visa 43 Comments

How to get H1B Visa from H4 – posted by Vasu  a comment.

Hello everyone!,

This thread (6 Options for H4 Visa) has been very encouraging and helpful.

A year ago I came to US with H4 and now I found H1B. yay!! (you can see my earlier posts here, how desperate and confused I was when I took that life changing step).

I work with a top notch IT consulting company in India as a software engineer and about to apply for H4 visa, giving up my job and country. Across the internet I have only found disheartening articles and comments regarding the status of H4 visa holders and their options. I understand that it takes a lot of struggle and luck to find a job in such situation. But I am prioritizing marriage before career right now. So I would like to hear some positive comments so that I can take the plunge with some hopes at least. Please suggest how to keep up your morale while struggling to make a place for yourself in new house and in a new country while finding a new job.

Thanks for any encouragement if you can give.

I request all those people who have posted here or have simply read this thread, not to loose hope and try try try…try very hard. Thats what I did in the last 1 year.

I started by taking the lead from here of volunteering websites and did some community activities which encouraged me tremendously.

I also got myself acquaint with the language and style of working.

I took baby steps of moving around without mobile phone and car.

I took public transport and all that gave me confidence that I can hold on my own without my husband’s support(not that he was not helping, but it was kind of different to feel self sufficient, because thats what I was before marrying-self sufficient!)

So I was being my own mom and guiding myself to find ways to self motivate with little achievements.

I used to go to gym and tried to be physically active too, because initial some days I lied in the house for whole day and worried about my increasing waist line. :( that was horrible!

(I still need to work on that, but now I have to manage time and my laziness but at least don’t have to pull myself out of bed).

I can not praise enough the importance of my social exposure by volunteering.

It gave me a lot of confidence and some real good friends for life.

I also kept in touch with my technology by reading stuff and watching videos of my subject on you tube.

I tried to read books but I always found myself yawning after reading 4 lines, and could never go past first 3 pages of it.

H4 Visa to H1B Visa

I tried to sit for a certificate exam in my field but sadly I failed in that. But in that trial at least I learned 2 -3 phrases that were currently talked about in my industry. Which was enough to make that impression in the interview. So on and so forth I was just kicking my own ass to get back on the wagon :) Which paid me pretty well in the end.

I would like to thank people here for keeping the hope alive all the time.

Good luck to all of you and God bless you!


  1. Hi,

    I’m in USA since an year in H4. My stay was not confirmed so couldn’t apply for H1B last year. Now I need to work ,can anyone please suggest me how can I get someone does H1B filing/processing/sponsorship.


  2. Hi,

    I am looking for H1B sponsorship for my husband. He is in India, working there and can’t get vacations of more than a month. I need the clarity on the below points:
    1. What is the best method of filing H1B:
    a) Fresh H1B filing
    b) transfer H4 to H1B
    2. In case, sponsor is filing a fresh H1B then does that means my husband can’t visit me on H4 from the date of H1B filing till H1B visa approval date?
    3. In case, sponsor is filing for a H4 to H1B transfer than does he has to stay in US through out the process or he can return to India after H1B filing and in case he picks up in lottery than he can join me in US on H4 and after the visa approval his visa category will be changed to H1B?
    4. In case of H4 to H1B transfer, is there any additional cost applicable for re-submitting I-94 to USCIS if applicant travel to India in that duration.

  3. Hi,
    I on H4 visa, have valid H1B petition. I want some one can apply for COS.
    So can I start appearing for interview for full-time opportunities. If my interview got cleared can some company apply for COS.

  4. HI All, I got H1B approved in 2015 and also my wife H4 approved. I want to apply fresh H1B for my wife next year 2016 april. She will come to USA in August 2016.

    1) If her petition is picked in lottery, still she can travel to USA on H4 in August 2016?

    2) If once she enters in USA with H4 visa, she needs to apply for COS from H4 to H1B before stamping? or else she needs to come back to india for stamping? still H4 is valid?

    3) If H1b is rejected, then still H4 is valid?

  5. Hi HSB,

    I am on H4 and trying hard to get a job. Applying to jobs on all sites. But as the US visa lottery system is coming closer thinking of applying for the same. Can someone please suggest any consultant who can help me with process to understand and ease.

    What are the other ways to get jobs, being on H4? Please suggest. I have heard that some institutions also sponsor H1 visa which does not come under H1b cap. Please share some information in this as no information is found on internet.

    My prior experience of 4 yrs is in the booming online industry working as business consultant for companies in B2B and B2C. As per my belief I would be required to have some courses done in regards to get a job.

    1. Author

      All the details are in H4 Visa Options and H1B Visa 101 course.

  6. If someone doesn’t want to share their personal details, then I can’t publish them. It’s pretty common in the field of journalism and online publishing.

    If you have more unanswered questions with immigration and laws, there always an option to hire an attorney to get answers.

    I can share what’s submitted by the user and at times, I ask them to provide more data. Sometimes, I don’t because, there are over 1000’s articles just in H1B category that one can search, read to find the required answers.

  7. HI,

    I came here (in US) in 2012 april, but that time i could not try for job.I tried in 2013 i got some calls from consultancies, but when they heard i am h4 visa,no one did call back.I am not able to study also.I am ready to work as volunteer in the same field in which i was working previously(software engineer in .net). Can you please suggest me how can i begin ?? please help me

  8. My wife who s coming on dependant visa in April month. She has got three years of IT exposure in India…is there any employer who can apply h1b for her??

  9. Hi,

    Can anyone please let me know how long dose it takes to convert my h4 to h1 if a company is ready to sponsor a job and the duration to convert the same and how long do i need to be on h4 to get h1?? I badly dont want to give a break in my career 🙁

  10. Kakali…

    Apply for jobs online (Indeed linkedin dice simplyhired Craigslist etc)

    the best way is to go on F1 (student visa) complete your master’s and then get a job on OPT (29 months) … employers will gladly sponsor your H1

  11. I have come to US at the end of 2012 and a month has passed by..Now I am thinking to convert my H4 visa to H1B…I am from bio and management field and now I am living in silicon valley….I just want some guidance as how to go ahead…

  12. Hi

    I am on H4 visa , i came to US in the month of november (2012 ) . I am planning to convert to H1B , I have 2 years of experience . Please provide if any consultancy details you have .

  13. Hi Raghu,
    I hope you don’t mind me sending you this post, but I was hoping you might be able to help me with something. Actually my sister is living in USA with H4 visa which is dependent visa for H1B, Now she is Looking for H1b visa sponsorship to apply coming april 2013 H1 B quota.She has 6 years of IT industry Experience in India(ASP.NET developer).Can you please help us provide some useful info and resourceful site to find out decent H1b job to apply,

    Appreciate your help in advance!

    Thanks and Regards,


  14. Hi Can you pl let me know any university provide online support for Actuarial Science MS degree.Can we get admission with out TOFELL and GRE

  15. Hi Can you pl let me know any university provide online support for Actuarial Science MS degree.

  16. Hi, I am also in H4 and looking for H1B sponsorship. I got so many negative responses like they can sponsor H1B for F1 candidates only…I am so frustrated.. If anybody know any company/consultancy who could sponsor H1B please share……Thanks

  17. Hello,

    I have question regarding H4 to H1 transfer. Can we apply for H1b visa as soon as we enter USA on H4? or else do we have to stay in US for atleast 6 months to apply for H1?

    1. There is no limit like 6 months for applying H1. You should find a employer who is ready to sponsor H1B for you. Once the employer selects you, he will apply for H1B for you in the next fiscal year April 2013.

  18. Came to Us on long leave in H4. can H4 to H1 be applied in US while holding a job in India.

    Please advice

  19. what the hell, why the hell r u using this forum for? if u can help or suggest give the details how it worked out….just having self sufficient wont help for converting from h4 to h1….here in US there r so many people with self confidence, had masters degrees n all…dont try to just explain all ur bullshit struggles

  20. I am a married woman and my married sister is in USA on H1, so can I go on H4 dependent of her to USA and then is it possible for me to apply for H1??

    Thanks in advance.

  21. I am a married woman and my married sister is in USA on H1, so can I go as H4 dependent of her to USA and then is it possible for me to apply for H1??

    Thanks in advance.

  22. There is lots of missing information in this write-up.

    Even if you get job interviews once you let them you can only start in October, you get rejected.

    Am I right?

  23. I m also trying and searching for job, but as of now no luck. Did you go through consultants or you applied directly to the companies? lot of questions lot of dilemma, it is very easy to get depressed, but as someone rightly said your post gives ‘HOPE’. its nice to know that its not impossible.

  24. Hi HSB ,

    My sister has filed an H1B petition in october 2011 through her organization All this while the status was unider intial review , recently the status has changed to RFE. Now her cleint wants to do a premium processing of the Visa , but since the status is RFE ,they are ubable to intiate premium processing. Generally how long does it take to go back to initial review stage? as PP can not be initiated under RFE stage. also , is there any way to notify the USCIS about this issue? Kindly help

  25. It will be a great help if HSB allows users to contact other users through a link. For example, now I want to contact the user who posted this article, but I don’t know who posted it. I don’t know how to contact her. I need to ask few questions to this user. Can HSB help me?

    – Vignesh

    1. If you account, then fill-in the link to your facebook profile or other link. If you don’t have account, then fill the url with link to linkedin. If other person doesn’t post url, I can’t share the person’s email address.

      Privacy is not given importance in India. But, in USA, that’s not the case.

  26. Hey .. u have only expressed the contentment u got after switching to H1B from H4. You have failed to explain the procedure through which u have made this good achievement. As switching from dependent Visa to work visa is really a daunting task in USA. Kindly provide the details and challenges mentioned by you , the challenges you have faced and what made you to overcome the difficulties. Your blog have left me with many unanswered questions. Happy School Blogs should not entertain such baseless write-ups. Instead they should provide a good platform for the people who really want to work in USA, but could not due to VISA. Instead of boasting of your virtues, you could have provided the guidance which would be fruitful to others. Anyways, I think this would be fake, if not justified.

    1. Madhu – You need to be happy that there is such platform and someone come forward to share that she got H4 Visa to H1B visa transfer. What would have you done if even this information is not shared? There is nothing called baseless write-ups. There is somethings that they might not be willing to share.

      As you said, its daunting task and road to H1B might not be straight forward (which you maybe well aware). People are not just going to share some information.

      You can read read her other comments. Person doesn’t have to share everything they know or did justify.

      1. HSB , I agree with you. Though this post doesnt give you much information, it gives the H4-visa holders , the HOPE, which I think is far more important than any other information.

    2. I am agree with above comment. Title says that this will be something informative but in actual nothing has been mentioned. If you really wish to help and motivate others kindly post the way to achieve that.

  27. Congrats 🙂
    Very encouraging indeed.
    Please share details like which consultant and your work ex.

  28. Hey Congrats 🙂
    Very encouraging indeed.
    Please share your work profile and the experience (H4 to H1 conversion)
    Was it through some consultant?
    Please share details.

  29. Hi Everyone and Congrats young lady,

    I believe that this was the most awaited post on this forum :).

    I am really liking some of your steps such as taking baby steps and being more and more social.
    Although I was doing all this, not with so much hope.
    After going through your post, I would definitely try to develop positive attitude and hope.

    Thank you so very much and have a great life ahead.

  30. Hi congrats!!!
    Really feel good that some h4 got converted to H1:) I being on H4 and strugling hard to keep hope alive that someday I cud get rid of H4,your post is really encouraging for me.
    I have few doubts and hope you will reply back with answers.
    I contacted some consultants, but they say either they need EAD to allow me to go for an interview or they need a client letter to give me a visa…now its a deadlock condition.
    How did you go about this? Please reply.

    1. From looking at her reply, looks like she has full time job. Why does everyone in H4 visa always think about getting job via consulting company?

      1. Hi HSB,
        I am also on H4 and trying hard to get a job.
        What are the other ways to get jobs, being on H4? Please suggest.
        I have heard that some institutions also sponsor H1 visa which does not come under H1b cap. Please share some information in this regard also.

  31. Hey Congraaaaaaaaaaaaaats 🙂

    I am going through the same situation and I can really understand how u wud have felt..sitting in a new place without work after having worked for so many yrs at ur home country.. So just wanted to ask u a few questions… How many yrs of experience did u have at your home country..and secondly how did u get to know about your new company’s interview..Were they ready to convert your H4 to H1 visa initially?

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