Life of an Indian Immigrant in the USA | USCIS – U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services

The horror.

I will be honest. The only travel visa which scared me to the core was the US travel visa. But then, I judged too soon! I never planned to move to another country – that too, this place where the visa process is probably very complicated. The immigration paperwork before, during and after your travel is haunting.

For Indians, the denial rate of different types of resident visa is pretty high. As of 2017, it is almost 40% for H1B and as high as 70% for L1B. So yes, the interview process is so scary, and you can never know the reason for the rejection of your visa. But that is just the tip of the iceberg. Immigration at the landing airport is taxing. My first time was not only scary but also unpleasant. But I don’t think you can blame anyone for that! My eventual entries to the US have been pretty smooth. The real pain starts after you reach here.

If you are on a student visa(F1) or work permit (L2, H4 EAD) which requires you to apply for the Employment Authorization Document (EAD), you can never be sure about the processing time. My EAD took almost six months to come along. And you practically can not do anything about it. Though any Federal process, as I mentioned earlier, is very smooth in the US, the processing time is killing. I don’t blame the US entirely for this though – the inflow of immigrants is very high and regulating that is certainly not a straightforward job.

For any student, who wish to stay here and work rather than moving back, the change of status of the visa is not an easy task either. For that matter, any change in visa status is a long process – highly dependent on your luck and frustrating too!

Uncertainty is the only word which can describe your life if you are a non-resident alien in this country. It always helps to be flexible with your plans!

Featured Image: Photo by Metin Ozer on Unsplash

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Picture Credits : Rohan Raizada