November 21, 2023

Common Challenges That Arise During Immigration to the U.S.

The decision to move to another country can be a daunting one, but it can also provide unparalleled opportunities for you and your loved ones. However, immigrating to the U.S. involves following procedures that can make the move more complicated than you might expect. 

Before you begin the immigration process, it’s best to be prepared. Understanding some of the most common obstacles that arise during immigration to the U.S. can help you plan for success. 

Long Wait Times

Regardless of what country you’re emigrating from, where in the U.S. you are relocating to, or what type of visa you’re seeking, long wait times tend to be a universal aspect of the immigration process. 

Visa approvals go through U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). Review times for visa applications have always taken time, but review times have increased considerably in recent years. 

Based on data reported by the USCIS, around 82% of applications are undergoing longer processing times. After submitting your application, you may hear nothing back for six months — or much longer. 

Immigration Caps

Another major obstacle would-be immigrants to the U.S. often encounter is the issue of immigration caps. The U.S. immigration system is complex. It offers a variety of different types of visas, most of which require that applicants meet specific criteria. 

While there are different amounts of available visas based on type, all of them have caps imposed by the U.S. Congress. This means that only a certain number of immigrants can be allowed into the country each year. This can also be further limited based on a person’s country of origin, i.e. China, India, Mexico, and Philippines.

Some visas come with stricter requirements, such as those that are offered based on an applicant’s professional skills or interest in investing. Exploring whether you qualify for specific types of visas can help you avoid denials or lengthier wait times. Good news, is that an immediate relative of a U.S. citizen many times can be qualified as cap exempt.

Immigration Paperwork Errors

Paperwork errors are another of the most common obstacles that can delay or halt the immigration process. The visa application process involves submitting a variety of petitions or applications via USCIS or NVC with supporting documents. 

Mistakes or oversights with any of these papers aren’t taken lightly during the review process. In most cases, missing documents, incorrectly completed forms, or small visa errors can result in your application being denied outright. Omission of decades old or even minor criminal history can cause significant delays.

Working with an immigration lawyer is the safest way to ensure that your immigration paperwork is complete and correct. A lawyer will also review your application for areas that might hurt your chances of approval, helping to significantly reduce the risk of paperwork being the reason your immigration process is harder than it needs to be.

Getting Help From a Michigan Immigration Attorney

One of the best steps you can take to avoid immigration obstacles is hiring an immigration attorney. Immigration attorneys are lawyers who have intricate knowledge of immigration laws and experience in navigating them. 

A seasoned immigration lawyer can often offer inside advice on how to streamline your immigration process and increase the chances of having a visa approved. Taking the time to consult an immigration lawyer can lead you to your best options, helping you plan for a smooth transition onto U.S. soil.