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Green card waitlist: Your wait for US Green Card could stretch up to 92 years

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NEW DELHI: Indians account for more than three-fourths or 75 per cent of those highly-skilled professionals waiting in queue to obtain legal permanent residence status in the US, popularly known as Green Card, the latest figures released by US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) show..

Along with China, India is one of the two countries with over 10,000 applicants.

As of May 2018, there were 3,95,025 foreign nationals waiting for Green Card under the employment-based preference category. Of these 3,06,601 were Indians, the USCIS data shows.

This does not include counts of dependent beneficiaries associated with the approved immigrant petitions, it said.

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Under the existing law in the US, applicants from any one country cannot be granted more than seven per cent of the Green Cards- which makes the wait for Indians the longest.

How long? Well, the number is mind-boggling.

Given the per country limits, an Indian skilled worker may have to wait anywhere between 25-92 years to get a Green Card. This effectively means that a 22-year old IIT graduate with a Silicon Valley dream may have to wait till he turns 114 to get his Green Card.

The US Green Card, also known as the permanent resident card, gives the holder permanent residence in the United States. Green Card holders can legally live and work in the US. The Green Card is the first step toward US citizenship. A US passport is considered to be one of the most powerful in the world and ranks at no. 5 in the 2018 Henley Passport Index– which ranks passports according to the number of countries their holders can travel to visa-free.

Updated: June 8, 2018 — 7:13 am

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