Successful H1B Visa renewal stamping Ottawa - 26 Sep 2013


yubeie

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Hello,

 

I've been browsing this forum for a long time and found a lot of useful information. It's now my turn to return the favor.

 

A little bit about myself :-)

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I have been in the US for about 7Yrs and few months now. I came here on F1 for my MS program. I graduated and got hired as a FTE in Company A on H1B.

I got my first H1B stamping in 2008.  I was due for my VISA renewal since Aug 2011. I waited for 2 yrs to ride out the 221g storm (during later 2011-early 2012). Finally I made up my mind to get my VISA renewed with one year to spare. In the mean time we got acquired by Company B under sucessor of interest clause an year ago! Yet again I was a little skeptical but I made up my mind to take a chance.

 

I ended up choosing Ottawa for two reasons:

-I live in the northeast part of US

-Ottawa had abundant available dates!

 

 

Travel and stay at Ottawa:

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-I reached Ottawa Sep24th evening.

-Customs was no big deal. The officer just asked me... what brings me to Canada and how long I intend to stay.

-I stayed in BestWestern PLUS -Gatineau,QC which is located right across the Alexandra Bridge. So, you just take a nice n quick stroll (~15 min) across the bridge to get to the consulate. It's a very beautiful sight with the Ottawa river and buildings along the side.

-I found the hotel for about $90 on Orbitz or else it typically cost $110 per night.

-Most of the people speak french and the food is expensive around this area. There is a McDonald's close by which is reasonable.

 

Interview Experience:

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My Interview was scheduled for 9:45AM on Sep 26th.

 

-I arrived at the consulate around 9:20AM.

-I went through the security check and completed all the formalities. This place is like a fortress which I felt was little too much especially since it was Canada!

-When done with security stuff..you walk through the isle to arrive at a help desk. A friendly lady requested for the I-797 and passport. She then checked the appointment list on her end and asked me to go Counter 7.

-At Counter 7, once you present your I797 and passport, they give you a token and a pamphlet about your non-immigrant rights and you are asked to take a seat. They also asked my about my status in Canada.

-When your token is called, you are asked to goto Counter6 for finger printing. Once done, you again go back to your seat and continue to wait for your interview.

-Finally after a 2.5hrs wait.. I was called for Interview at Counter3. They were a little short staffed on that day...anyways here's how it went:

 

 

VO: Mr. Last Name..We apologize for the delay..we are a litlle short-staffed today..

Me: No worries Officer..How are you doing today!

 

VO: Gives me a look..I am doing fine..How are you?

Me: For a sec..I was a little flustered..but I quickly regained my composure...I am doing fine ..thanks for asking!

 

VO: So..why are you going to XYZ city?

Me: I work at place ABC for a Company B which is a 20min drive from XYZ..

 

VO: How long have you been working here?

Me: I've been working at this place for 5.5Yrs.

 

VO: Looking my details..it would have been better if you carried an H1B amenment since you are now with Company B and NOT Company A

Me: Well..Company B acquired Company A under sucessor-of-interest clause..hence the attorneys have confirmed that an amendment is not required by law.

 

VO: He kinda agrees..and then asked..who is your attorney?

Me: Gave Attorney's name.. its an Asian name.

 

VO: What? that cannot be true!

Me: Belive it or not..that's the attorney and my Corporate Counsel at the time of filing the petition was zzzz...who is no longer with Company B.

 

VO: hmm alright..where is your old passport?

Me: I was confused since I had only one passport..So I clarified to the VO..I am sorry Officer...but I just have one passport and all my VISA stamps should be in there..

 

VO: okay..are you coming from your home country or the US?

Me: I came to Canada from the US to get my VISA renewed.

 

VO: Okay Mr.Last Name.I once again appreciate your patience, we will mail out your passport through LOOMIS to your chosen location...please pick up your passport using the tracking informtion provided by this website.n enjoy your trip!...n then he gave me a white paper which had the instructions on it.

Me: Thank you Sir..and have a great day!

 

 

n that's it..I breathed a sigh of relief and starting calling my near and dear to convey the result!

I recieved an email from LOOMIS the next day stating my passport has been picked up. At this time, I am still waiting for my passport.

 

 

Places to See:

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-Ottawa has a couple of good shopping malls.

-I would defnitely recommend renting car and drive to Montreal which about 1.5hrs drive. It's a beautiful place with great parks and muesums!!

 

 

Good Luck everyone!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Yeah, I got a 221g at Ottawa Oct 2012 for not having client letter and client did not want to verify either. I waited there for 3 weeks, went to India, got married, found another project, submitted those letters, I was asked to come again. After 5 months, I again went to Ottawa, they issued by visa. I will go back Ottawa again, its a cool place! 

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Yeah, I got a 221g at Ottawa Oct 2012 for not having client letter and client did not want to verify either. I waited there for 3 weeks, went to India, got married, found another project, submitted those letters, I was asked to come again. After 5 months, I again went to Ottawa, they issued by visa. I will go back Ottawa again, its a cool place! 

 

There you go..so as said 1000 times...if the candidate has the proper documents they do not need to worry about the Consulate. Even if they went to Vancouver they would be asked the Client letter.

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There you go..so as said 1000 times...if the candidate has the proper documents they do not need to worry about the Consulate. Even if they went to Vancouver they would be asked the Client letter.

This statement is FALSE. I work at a company full-time, and I have all my letters, my previous visa approvals, my previous company offer letters. I have always been in a full-time ever since I finished my Masters. Never been out of status, or anything. Few basic questions were asked, and I gave him what he asked me for. He returned them all to me, asking me for a resume and a blue 221g form stating it may take 2 weeks to 2 months. I have every possible W2 form, Tax forms, and any documents you/they can think of, but wasn't asked for. Whose fault is it? No idea. I have been waiting for more than 4 business weeks now, and I am tired. It is purely based on luck!

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