To what extent did it take to you get your green card? How was the procedure?

To what extent did it take to you get your green card? How was the procedure?

In short, it took me and my wife approximately 7 years to get the green card. It might be more of a generic time frame, however I have seen numbers which are more than what I have gone through. Every one’s journey is different and could be based on the choices that one has made during the time line.

I got my H1-B in 2007 and my company applied for my green card in July 2008. Most companies do not apply for green cards this soon, but I might have gotten lucky. Between 2008 and 2011, the i-140 was approved and then I started waiting for my priority date to become current. Understand that 2008 was not really a great time for the US economy, so applications for green card were also scarce. July 2011, I decided to switch jobs and decided to go through the process again with my new employer, assuming my date will not be current soon. One year after I switch my job, my priority date becomes current and I could apply for i-485, however my new employer did not have i-140 approved till then. I was disappointed on my decision, but again, it is all about choices as I said. I got through the Labor and i-140 between 2011 and 2014. Again my priority date becomes current and this time around, I get to apply for i-485. This time I got my EAD. Once I got the EAD, it took one more year before I got my hands on the green card. July 2015 we had our green cards.

One cannot compare every case with theirs, and everyone’s journey is different. If it took 7 years for me, that does not mean someone cannot get it in 1 year or less. This process is based on a lot of factors. I was born in India and so my application gets into the INDIA queue. Again the priority date is based on the birth country and not the citizenship of the applicant.

Along the way, you learn a lot about the american immigration system, which empowers you to empathize with others who are going through the process and are still waiting in the queue. There are a lot of people fighting for this and will continue to do so, but unless we revamp the american immigration system, it will become harder and harder for indian immigrants to get a green card. There are only a handful (2–3k/year) green cards released and the number shall never go up unless something is changed.

 

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