|Originally posted by St_Andrew |
Well a greencard is a permanent resident visa, and a work permit is only a work permit... And even if it would be cool to have a greencard I don't really think it's necessary, and I guess its easier to get a work permit than a green card?
But that's weird, I thought everyone with a PhD got a work permit really easy in the US
Your best bet is entering the USA on a student or exchange VISA. These are now more difficult to go through to obtain then they used to (meaning you should prepare in advance), but basically all you need is an accpetance letter from the university.
You can then either work illegally in the USA when you are here or you can work legally for the unversity in university related jobs legally if you can find them. The best way to get paid for these jobs is to be cozy with a professor which takes about a semster.
Then after you graduate you can work legally for any company for a year, this is part of the student visa and is considered a "internship period". After that period you must leave the country unless you have obtained a different visa class/work permit.
The easiest way to get a greencard is to marry. You don't need a greencard to work, you just need a work permit; these are usually H1 visas (student visa is F1). These are not too hard for a company to obtain (they only cost $3000 at cheapest ), some companies will refuse to hire you and most all will say they do not hire foreigners. Unless they are defense contractors, they are lying. You must lie in your interview process or you have no chance to get hired and sponsored by most companies (I think they make it as a basic "IQ" test as part of the interview). Once you get to the later stages of interview and they like you enough they will most likely want to sponosor you.
Once you obtain an H1 visa you have to renew it every X number of years for X number of dollars. You can't be on an H1 visa for more than 15 years concurrently in the USA. Once you are on a H1 visa you can apply for permant residence instantly (green card). This process can take anywhere from 1 - 5 years depending on how you apply for greencard (relatives, work sponsored, oustanding person/researcher/etc).
You are advised to retain a lawyer when applying for an H1B and greencard (perhaps even J1 these days), otherwise you will encounter issues like me with the INS (rant warning!):
I applied for my greencard in October 2002 with all my family who has since received their greencards in June 2005. I was requested to submit "evidence" since my suregon who took my blood test forget to tell me to sign the paper. This isn't a big issue in and of itself, as I call the surgeon he creates new paperwork, I sign it, and I send it off to them. The INS receives the paperwork, looks at it, and tells me they no longer need it because they've already made a decission on my case (either approved or denied my greencard). 3 months pass and I am unable to contact the INS (they hangup when I call them as I have to wait "60 days from my last letter"). By the time they are able to look into my case and tell me whats wrong (they haven't received the paperwork I have documented proof they received) they deny my case based on the fact that they haven't recfeived the paperwork I have document proof they received.
Anyway long story short, the INS really, really, really sucks.
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