USA Immigration

2008/2009 has been a bad year for immigrants travelling to and from USA and I dont have to mention the reason for this since it is quite obvious. I have been hearing lots of cases of denial of entry/re-entry to the USA based on your immigration status. Though I don't exactly know how many of those stories are true, I am pretty sure that travelling is not very comfortable these days, especially at the Port of Entry.

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Last evening I heard a case of somebody who works for a big financial company in Manhattan and had travelled to his home country for vacation. He was re-entering USA on a work Visa and it seems the immigration officer questioned him on his job, his status, etc and after a long grilling the officer called up the HR of the company that had hired him. Upon asking if they could find a local replacement for the job immigrant is doing, HR replied neutrally (something like maybe or may not). On getting that answer, the immigration officer denied the entry and gave the I-94 for that guy only for couple of days and asked him to leave the country within that time after settling his things here. Poor guy, had a house, car and who knows what else!!

Looking at it, we could argue from both perspective. This guy was well settled here in USA and was living in this country for so many years, now all of a sudden, because of the economy not doing good, it was not fair to send him that way, that too its not that he did not have a job here. If he was rejected a VISA stamping or a VISA approval, its understandable. But rejecting at the Port Of Entry is something that would make that guy's life miserable.USA issues so many Visas when the economy is doing good and when there is so much demand for these immigrants as those jobs cannot be filled up by local people here.Probably this needs to be re-looked!!

The other angle to look at it is, is it fair to layoff an American citizen and keep a guy from another country who is here on  work Visa hired? Definitely No! No country nor any country citizen would approve it. That way, United States of America is a great country and people here are really kind enough to not make a big issue out of this. But things should not go beyond a certain limit where in locals would get offended as they dont have a house to live, decent life to live in this economy.

How do we handle this situation? There is no definite answer for this. Everybody knows that things will cool down once the economy picks up and when there are more jobs here to offer for an outsider. So time is the only answer for this and hopefully we all will see a better Economy atleast by end of this year. I remember same was the case in 2001-2002 and everybody were talking about immigrants replacing local jobs and there was major protests against that.But eventually people forgot that when the economy picked and infact lot of American companies were in front run to request for a increase in the Visa cap.

I just advise all immigrants who are travelling outside USA to carry all necessary/un-necessary documents with them when so that they dont miss anything that might be asked by the immigrant officer at the Port of Entry.Better would be to talk to your Immigration Attorney and your company HR so that before you travel you dont face a situation like above at the Port Of Entry.

God Bless America!

Author: pradeep