My H1B visa got approved, however, I haven’t received my passport yet (10 days later). After many calls and emails I finally went to the embassy again and I was told that there are some governmental/administrative issues and it might take up to one month for the visa to be stamped in my passport (but they confirmed again it was approved). Given that, I will most probably have to go to the US after my start date. Of course I emailed my employer about it but I wanted to ask if anyone knows what would happen in this situation? Can I enter US after my start date, given that the delay is not because of me (and it should be easy to prove the timeline of the passport return process if needed)? Should I expect for the start date to be delayed by my employer? Thank you!
Given that, I will most probably have to go to the US after my start date.
Yes. You cannot enter the US without your passport and visa in hand.
Of course I emailed my employer about it but I wanted to ask if anyone knows what would happen in this situation?
You just have to sit tight and wait it out. You employer needs to delay your official start date until you can legally allowed to work in the country.
Can I enter US after my start date,
given that the delay is not because of me
Should I expect for the start date to be delayed by my employer?
That's the only viable option. While it's frustrating and infuriating for all parties, that's the way the US government works. Most companies that are hiring with H1Bs are used to that type of delay and will deal with it.
No, you can not enter the US after your "visa start date", but only because US Visas don't have a start date!
US visas have an "Issue Date" and an "Expiration Date". You can use your visa to enter the US any time between when it is issued to you, and the expiration date.
Given you are on a work visa, there is an additional requirement that you may not enter the country more than a certain number of days BEFORE you are due to start working (it's 10 days for some visas, but I'm not sure for H-1B), however there are no corresponding rules for entering after your intended start date.