Technically, when I applied for my last H1 extension, dates were retrogressed for me and I was not eligible then to apply for 485 (Note: I had an approved 140 in hand by then). But, in less than a month dates did become available and I was able to file for 485. All of this was during the June/July fun last year.
Now, my expectaction was that since I applied for H1 extension when dates were retrogressed, I would be granted 3 years. But, when my H1 extension approval finally arrived in October (dates were not retrogressed at that time), to my great disappointment I got only 1 year
So, when USCIS is determining whether dates are retrogressed for us, are they looking at H1 Receipt date or approval to determine the 1 vs 3 years for the extension? Many people have stated in forums that USCIS "should" and "is" using receipt date. But, in my case it was not true. So, it does not matter what the law states OR RATHER what WE interpret the law as stating. What matters is only how USCIS interprets the law and the action they take based on that.
So, this year I have to go through the H1 extension all over again. Once again, dates are currently retrogressed. So, will I get 3 years this time or will they give me only 1 year because my 485 is pending? Who knows and who cares any more....it has become an annual ritual for me...every April/May time period prepare the H1 extension, pay the fees to USCIS and expect them to hibernate my application for months...oct...nov...dec...jan until USCIS decides to finally grant the extension. I have been going through this annual ritual since 2005!