Can my employer apply to H1B visa in the US with expired passport?

So my employer wants to apply for H1 visa and my passport is expired. Company lawyer is unsure if we can apply with expired passport as I am already in the US. Does it matter, can we proceed? It's hard to extend passport of my country of citizenship, and you have to travel there to do it. Extending through consulate is not an option. Would appreciate any help!