The Timeline for Indian Passport Holders
The timeline for an Indian passport holder to obtain US citizenship can vary depending on several factors, including the chosen pathway, personal circumstances, and the efficiency of the immigration process. On average, the entire journey can take 5 to 15 years. However, it is important to note that individual cases may experience shorter or longer durations due to the complexity of each situation.
Different Pathways to US Citizenship:
For Indian passport holders who have close relatives that are US citizens or permanent residents, the family-based immigration pathway is a common choice. Immediate relatives, such as spouses, parents, and unmarried children under 21, have a more streamlined process. The estimated timeline for this pathway can vary from 1 to 10 years, depending on the specific family relationship and the backlog of applications.
Indian professionals seeking US citizenship may pursue the employment-based immigration pathway. This typically involves securing a job offer from a US employer who sponsors their visa. The process involves several steps, including obtaining a work visa (such as an H-1B) and, eventually, an employment-based green card. The timeline for this pathway can range from 5 to 10 years, depending on the visa category, job demand, and individual circumstances.
Diversity Visa Lottery
Indian passport holders may also participate in the Diversity Visa (DV) Lottery program, commonly known as the Green Card Lottery. Each year, the US government randomly selects individuals from countries with low rates of immigration to offer them permanent residency. The timeline for this pathway varies, as it depends on winning the lottery and completing subsequent immigration processes, which can take several years.