The foreign beneficiary on an H–1B status and his or her dependents are considered to be in a valid nonimmigrant status after termination of employment, for up to 60 consecutive days or until the end of the authorized validity period, whichever is shorter, once during each authorized validity period.
During this period of time they may apply for and be granted a change of employer or change of status, if otherwise eligible.
Yes, it is possible. In order to benefit from the portability provisions, the following requirements must be met:
Some employers have considered allowing the alien to remain on the payroll and continue receiving regular benefits such as accrued vacation time, and any other payout it deems appropriate. However, such arrangements might conflict with other labor policies and regulations and will require careful consideration by a company and its labor counsel. The Wage and Hour Unit of Department of Labor may find that the employee has been “benched” and order back pay for the alien worker, and find continued payroll responsibilities unless there is a clean break, and the termination is evidenced in writing to the alien worker and to USCIS and the Department of Labor through the withdrawal of the Labor Condition Attestation (“LCA”).
The underlying H-1 petition would still be approved but the applicant would have to leave the U.S. and apply for a new H-1 visa outside the U.S.
The employer is obligated to pay return transportation back home. If there is severance pay, it can be structured so a portion of it reflects the reasonable costs of a return transportation ticket home for the worker. There is no obligation regarding any other family members. Of course, most employees do not express an interest to return home but wish to seek alternate employment.
It depends on what stage of the application has been processed.