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Good News For Indians Staying In US! Process Of Getting H-1B Visa Just Got Simpler Through THIS Initiative

Upon completion of all processes, the Department of State estimates it will take 6 to 8 weeks for the visa to be renewed.

Edited By : Saurav Gupta | Updated: Jan 30, 2024 10:04 IST
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Getting H-1B Visa Just Got Simpler Through THIS Initiative
Getting H-1B Visa Just Got Simpler Through THIS Initiative

A significant initiative aimed at simplifying the renewal process for foreign citizens working in the United States kicks off today, as per AajTak. The pilot program specifically focuses on domestic renewal of H-1B visas and was officially announced during Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s state visit to the U.S. in June last year.

Initially announced in December, the program is set to benefit a large number of Indians, as they constitute the largest group of skilled workers in the country, according to Deputy Assistant Minister for Visa Services Julie Stafford.

The three-month pilot program, running from January 29 to April 1, aims to renew visas for 20,000 individuals. This opportunity is open to those who were issued H-1B visas from the Indian Consulate in America between February 1 and September 30, 2021, and from the Canadian Consulate between January 1, 2020, and April 1, 2023.

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During the renewal period, there will be no issuance fee for eligible foreign nationals. Additionally, those who submitted ten fingerprints during their initial visa application will be exempted from the interview process.

Applicants can apply for visa renewal on specific dates, with a cap of renewing visas for 4,000 people per week. If the quota is reached before April 1, the program will close. The renewal process can be initiated online through the Department of State’s website, and a fee of $205 will be charged.

The renewal process involves filling out the DS-160 form, providing a copy of the passport with at least six months’ validity, a photo, a copy of I-797 and I-94 forms, and records of travel to and from America.

Upon completion of all processes, the Department of State estimates it will take 6 to 8 weeks for the visa to be renewed. However, applicants wanting an expedited renewal can follow the normal procedure.

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This simplified renewal process comes as good news for about 10 lakh people, with a significant portion being Indians. As of 2022, the U.S. government had issued H-1B visas to 4.42 lakh individuals, with 73 percent of them being Indians. The pilot program aligns with efforts to streamline processes and make the visa renewal experience more efficient for foreign workers.

First published on: Jan 30, 2024 07:31 AM IST

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