Here are some FAQ's that are answered on the new H1B visa stamping pilot program that is to be introduced in Jan 2024.
1. Will dependents be included in the 20,000 limit?
No, dependents will not be included in the 20,000 limit. According to the Deputy Assistant Secretary for Consular Affairs, the program has not been considered for expansion to a wider audience that includes dependents.
2. Is 20,000 the limit for the pilot program?
The renewal pilot program has been proposed for more than 20,000 persons. The exact number is not specified, but it is confirmed to exceed the 20,000 limit.
3. How is the process going to be?
The details of all the steps involved in the process are not yet announced. However, for qualified H1B visa renewals, the documents are expected to be mailed to the State Department. It is advised that there should be no international travel outside the U.S. before the visa stamping process is completed.
4. Is this a new program?
No, this is not a new program. The U.S. State Department used to renew visas within the U.S. before 2004. The renewal pilot program marks a shift in the renewal process for H1B visas, bringing changes to the previous approach.