The illustrious GREEN CARD in the USA....

  • DrStorm

    Posts: 185

    Nov 30, 2008 3:35 AM GMT
    I am originally from South Africa and have been in the US since 1995. I came to the US to do my PHD, and in 2005, decided to no longer remain in academia and instead, move to San Francisco where I entered the commercial workplace. My company sponsored my work VISAs and also my permanent resident VISA (AKA GREEN CARD). I am extremely fortunate to have received it on the 17th NOV and am now a permanent resident of the USA.

    I have many friends who have American boyfriends and who have not been as fortunate as me and have had to go back to their countries of origin. I have friends who have married American females to remain in the US.

    I'd be interested in hearing from those of you who have been affected either by GREEN CARD denials or what you or your partner had to endure to obtain the magical "brass ring". This is an issue that affects thousands and thousands of potential immigrants and I've heard so many unhappy ending stories. Most Americans are blissfully unaware of just how hard it is to remain permanently in this country.

    I count myself blessed and extremely fortunate. I trusted in the system and my law firm and the $20,000 it took to get a piece of plastic that entitles me to remain here indefinitely. However, I feel I am in the minority when it comes to these type "happy ending" stories.

    I open the forum to those who have been affected in one way or another - and it does not have to be the USA and the GREEN CARD, since every country has similar type residency rules an regulations.

    PEACE
    daWeatherMan

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    Nov 30, 2008 3:39 AM GMT
    20,000 dollars?

    oh man that is crazy, my sisters husband only had to pay 1500 to become a citizen.
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    Nov 30, 2008 3:42 AM GMT
    I have heard of one incident here in which a filipino from Southern Mindanao was denied work visa for the US because his name was Islamic (even though he was Catholic). This was during the height of the Iraq war. Heh. The US by far is one of the most difficult countries to get into legally if you are not from a first world country.

    Also VISA processing here (for the US) takes months if not years, even for only a tourist VISA.

  • Nov 30, 2008 6:11 PM GMT
    I originally came to the U.S. as a student and I remember everyone's (the foreigners) number one goal was to figure out how to stay in the country. Out of over one hundred or so foreigners only about three of us, myself included, managed to obtain the illusive greencard and stay in the country.
    It is a needlessly long process and I agree that a lot of Americans have no idea how hard it is for people to stay here. I met someone's mother once who thought you could literally just come here and work without any kind of processing. I also think it's a lot harder since 9/11.
    However, like a lot of things in America, money talks and if you have it and really, really want it, you'll get it.
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    Nov 30, 2008 6:30 PM GMT
    Finally, another South African on RJ.
    I do hope that you don't look like crap on your card the way I do.
  • DCEric

    Posts: 3713

    Nov 30, 2008 6:42 PM GMT
    My partner and I are at the beginning of this process. I am the American, he is from India (from Kolkata- so no worries with the events in Mumbai). Anyway, he just got his PhD. and is now figuring out how to get his Green Card. He is now working for a start up (he's got his clearance for the H1 Visa, but we haven't left the country yet so he can get it in his Passport). Unfortunately the start up has not yet had a year in the black and we don't want to tie his application for the Green Card to this company, so he is applying individually based solely on his resume.

    Our alternate plans?
    1) Canada, he has had his "Canadian Green Card" accepted, and he now has three years to claim it. As an American it is not hard for me to legally work in Canada.

    2) If he is rejected AND sent home, I apply for Israeli citizenship and claim him as my partner. We will have to go to Canada for a week to get married so Israel will admit him.

    The problem? We work in very different specialized fields (Him: software for Satellite Receiving Stations, while I am a meteorologist who understandings the impacts on humanitarian conditions in the developing world). Washington, DC is our ideal city. If we leave the country we will go where he can find work- but I may well end up taking a lower salary job doing something I don't truly want to be doing.
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    Nov 30, 2008 6:49 PM GMT


    ...heh, and you can marry in Canada, try for landed immigrant status, and because of marriage and what's happened in the US, even try for refugee status due to your marriage being invalid in the States.
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    Nov 30, 2008 7:34 PM GMT
    My partner got his permanent resident status about a year ago. He's also lived here for 15 years.

    The past year has been complete chaos. McCain finally granted his mother permanent residence here becuase of the storm back in Myanmar last spring. We're going over next month to get her.

    We are still struggling to get his brother over here.....Ughh.
  • DCEric

    Posts: 3713

    Nov 30, 2008 11:10 PM GMT
    meninlove said

    ...heh, and you can marry in Canada, try for landed immigrant status, and because of marriage and what's happened in the US, even try for refugee status due to your marriage being invalid in the States.


    No such luck. To claim oneself as a refugee you have to have the threat of violence (usually a previous example is required). In that case we would just be using Canada for the marriage license to get him into Israel.
  • beaujangle

    Posts: 1701

    Nov 30, 2008 11:29 PM GMT
    This is such an interesting topic!

    I wonder what about the 50,000 'lottery' green card thingy. I wonder there's any luck or is it also difficult?
  • DCEric

    Posts: 3713

    Dec 01, 2008 1:03 AM GMT
    beaujangle saidThis is such an interesting topic!

    I wonder what about the 50,000 'lottery' green card thingy. I wonder there's any luck or is it also difficult?


    If it was easy, Latin Americans wouldn't bother trying to enter the country illegally.
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    Dec 01, 2008 1:13 AM GMT
    Very good topic; while no place on Earth is perfect and there may be better places to live, many us who were born in America really don't know how fortunate we are.
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    Dec 01, 2008 1:18 AM GMT
    I actually have a friend of mine who is trying to figure out how to become a permanent resident of the US. He's straight (UNFORTUNATELY) because Lord KNOWS I would love to date him. I met him here at school 3 years ago and we're still the best of friends to this date. We joke that I'm searching for a wife for him so that he can come to the us...even though I think he's 100% serious about it. He knows about me and I definitely told him that if it were legal here, I'd marry him for it. Lol.