It is not easy being a citizen of India who wants to live and work in the U.S. with plans to become a permanent resident or U.S. citizen. Indian nationals face a coordinated series of hurdles and roadblocks.
Both OPT and H-1B are under attack. If a foreign national is lucky enough to be selected in the H-1B lottery, new adjudication interpretations are making it even more difficult to get H-1B petitions approved. If approved, extensions are not assured since USCIS has now stated it will give no deference to its previous approval. There are also plans to remove the regulation allowing certain H-4 spouses of H-1B visa holders to work in the U.S.
If an employer sponsors a successful labor certification application, the Indian national will then go into the EB-2 or EB-3 quota. A conservative estimate for how long that wait will be is 15 to 20 years or more. During that time, he cannot leave his employer or be promoted. Even the very restrictive EB-1 (extraordinary ability) category has recently become subject to a lengthy quota backlog.
This leaves one opportunity for the Indian national seeking to obtain permanent resident status in the reasonably near future: EB-5. While the minimum $500,000 investment amount means it is certainly not an option for all, it is for some – – either through their own means or through gifts. EB-5 allows the Indian citizen flexibility in his employment, including the ability to be promoted or to switch employers without affecting his green card application.
On September 12, NES Financial will be hosting an informational webinar called “H-1B to EB-5: Stay Permanently, Work Anywhere” to educate those interested in learning the requirements, process, and realistic timeline to obtain a green card through the EB-5 program. The speakers will discuss how to avoid the pitfalls of the program and how to identify good EB-5 investments. Speakers will include top-level executives from EB-5 industry-leading companies: NES Financial, Klasko Immigration Law Partners, and CanAm Enterprises. To register, please click here.