The Chennai Consulate has recently sent out a memo to all Business Executive Program companies interpreting how time spent in the US on an H1B counts in determining the one year continuous employment abroad requirement for L-1 status. According to this memo, the Consulate states that time spent in the US on an H1b “stops the clock” for the purpose of the 1 year work requirement, i.e. does not interrupt the continuity of the one year requirement. However, the time spent in the US does not count towards the fulfillment of the one year requirement either. For example, an employee who has worked abroad with an affiliated employer for six months then enters the US on an H1b for six months, then travels back abroad and wants to reenter the US on an L1 visa will not be able to as they have only 6 months of qualifying employment. They must work abroad for an additional 6 months for that affiliated employer to be eligible for an L1. The key is that the employee must show one-year of qualifying employment during the past three years has been served abroad.