Glossary

A

ADJUSTMENT OF STATUS
The last step to becoming a permanent resident, it happens when a person changes from nonimmigrant status to immigrant status. And that’s why it is called the Adjustment of Status ! It allows eligible applicants to become lawful permanent residents of the U.S. without having to go abroad and apply for an immigrant visa. The alternative to this step is consular processing, which allows you to apply and process a visa through a U.S. consulate abroad.
ALIEN
Any person not a citizen or national of the United States. Those on visitor visa and temporary work visa ( such as H1B visa, student visa) are called aliens !
A NUMBER
It stands for Alien Registration Number. It is a number that starts with A (for Alien) followed by eight-digits. USCIS would have assigned A number if you previous applied for permanent residency or in some cases temporary residency (such as Student on OPT, work permit for L2 workers etc.), or have been in deportation or removal proceedings.
ADVANCE PAROLE
Commonly given to people in the last step of the permanent residence process, this classification gives foreigners permission to reenter the U.S. after leaving temporarily. In short it is a document which allows you to reenter USA after couple of months while keeping your permenant residence status of USA intact.

B

BENCHING
Benching refers to workers who are in nonproductive status due to a decision by the employer, such as lack of work or a permit. Sometimes this is referred to as "on the bench".
Please note that all the H1B visa holder , while working for their employer in USA are eligible to get the full salary while on the bench.

C

CONSULTANT OR CONTRACTOR
A person who is providing their IT services to some US based company. Consultant/Contractor is not a full time employee of this US based company. From H1B visa point of view, Consultant/Contractor is considered as Full Time Employee of the company whose name shows up in his/her H1B visa stamped in the passport.
CLIENT
USA based company looking for skilled labor in IT area to fulfill their on-going requirement in IT.
CONTRACTUAL ASSIGNMENT
It’s an agreed upon contract between you (consultant) and the vendor.
CONSULAR PROCESSING
Consular processing (CP) is equivalent to I-485 or adjustment of status process with the difference is that 485 can be filed only if the applicant is physically present in USA.
Consular processing is a interview process which, an applicant can take at us consulates overseas.
One can apply for consular processing if the adjustment of status applicant is outside of the USA or live in USA but prefer processing of his/her green card application at a US consulate abroad for convenience.

D

DEPARTMENT OF LABOR
A cabinet level unit/ministry of United States Government that has responsibility for labor issues. It has responsibility for deciding whether certain foreign workers can work in the United States.
DESI
The word 'desi' evolved from the Sanskrit term 'desha', meaning country. With time its usage shifted more towards referring to people, cultures, and products of a specific region. For example a person with the Indian/Asian origin is sometime referred as DESI.
DESI EMPLOYER
Employer with Asian origin or Indian origin , who have established IT consulting company in USA. Typically this type of company hires skilled IT folks from India/Pakistan/Bangladesh and other Asian countries to provide IT consulting services to their American clients. Or in H1B visa employee’s words Desi employer means a mosquito which will carry dengue virus and will bite you again and again until you walk away from him.
DMV
A department of motor vehicles (DMV) is a state-level government agency that administers vehicle registration and driver licensing.
DOWNTOWN
Downtown is a term primarily used in North America by English speakers to refer to a city's core (or center) or CBD (Central Business District), often in a geographical, commercial, or communal sense.
DUPLEX
A duplex house is a dwelling having apartments with separate entrances for two families. This includes two-story houses having a complete apartment on each floor and also side-by-side apartments on a single lot that share a common wall.
DRIVING UNDER THE INFLUENCE OR DUI
Duplex
Driving under the influence (DUI), driving while intoxicated (DWI), drunken driving, drink driving, drunk driving, operating under the influence, drinking and driving, or impaired driving is the crime of driving a motor vehicle with blood levels of alcohol in excess of a legal limit ("blood alcohol content", or "BAC"). If you ever have been arrested under DUI, your dream of getting a green card may get ruined.
DUAL INTENT
Certain Visa types (specifically , the H-1B and L-1 Visas) allow a foreign national to enter the U.S. as a nonimmigrant ( meaning on temporary basis) , even if s/he has filed, or intends to file, for permanent residence ( means planning to stay forever). This is not allowed in other non-immigrant Visa categories, such as student visa. In short, planning to come on short term ( first intention) and then while being on short term decided to stay forever ( second intention !) is called the dual intent.
DEPORTATION
The formal removal of an alien from the United States when the alien has been found removable for violating the immigration laws. Deportation is ordered by an immigration judge without any punishment being imposed or contemplated.
DEPORTABLE ALIEN
An alien in and admitted to the United States subject to any grounds of removal specified in the Immigration and Nationality Act. This includes any alien illegally in the United States, regardless of whether the alien entered the country by fraud or misrepresentation or entered legally but subsequently violated the terms of his or her nonimmigrant classification or status.

E

EB- EMPLOYMENT BASED IMMIGRANT VISA ( GREEN CARD) CATEGORIES
The Employment Based has 1-5 Preference(s) Immigrant Visa categories for “Priority Workers: EB-1 through EB-5.
EB-1
These workers include foreign nationals of Extraordinary Ability in a range of areas from the sciences, arts, education, business or athletics; Outstanding Professors and Researchers; and Multinational Managers and Executives. Labor certification application is not required.
EB-2
EB-2
The priority worker who has an advanced degree (a masters or bachelor’s degree and at least five years’ experience. You must file a labor certification.
EB-3
For professionals, with a job offer and an approved labor certification application.
EB-4
For special immigrants, such as a religious ministers and /or workers and their dependent family members.
EB-5
Best suited for immigrant investors investing a $1 million of capital minimum of which $500,000 of capital is invested in a targeted employment area that will create at least 10 fulltime jobs for U.S. workers.
EMPLOYMENT AUTHORIZATION DOCUMENT ( EAD )
Employment Authorization Document
Granted by the USCIS to temporary visa holders for permission to work in the United States. There can be many different situations for a work authorization such as adjustment of status applicants, F1 students that want practical training, and spouses of L1 visa holders.

F

FULL TIME EMPLOYEE (FTE)
If employer takes care of your benefits, salary etc then you are considered as a full time employee of such employer/company. All H1B visa holder employees are the full time employee of their H1B visa sponsoring company regardless of the location of the H1B visa holder in USA. For example, if Dhokha Concepts is your H1B visa sponsor and Dhokha Concept’s office is located in Richmond, VA but as a consultant of Dhokha Concepts you are providing your IT services in Houston, TX then also you are considered as Full Time Employee of Dhokha Concepts, because Dhokha Concepts pays you the salary and benefits.
FAMILY BASED VISA OR FAMILY BASED GREEN CARD
Family based visas are created so that once a person becomes green card holder or US citizen. The person can bring the immediate relatives to USA and those immediate relatives gets green card directly ! Hence, for any US citizens and lawful permanent residents (green card holders) who wishes to petition for spouses, sons and daughters, and parents , they may do so and visa ( the green card) issued under this category is called the family based visa.
FRESHMAN, SOPHOMORE, JUNIOR, SENIOR
In a four year High School there are the 9th, 10th, 11th and 12th grades also known respectively as freshman, sophomore, junior and senior years.

Freshman = 9th grade (1st year of high school)

Sophomore = 10th grade (2nd year)
Junior = 11th grade (3rd year)

Senior =12th grade (4th & final year)

G

GREEN CARD
At its most basic level, the green card is permission from the US government to live and work within the borders of the US, and by getting one of these it can be presented to potential employers and landlords to prove that the individual is allowed to be within the country, and can be employed or given housing with some reassurance.

The main purpose of the green card is that it is a proof provided to an immigrant explaining to employers that they are within the borders of the US legally, and this allows employers to safely employ someone who has moved to the country, and to have the support of the green card in providing such a job. Without a green card there are very strict criteria for working within the US, which are very difficult to meet, which is why the vast majority of people who are working within the United States would love to have the green card at the earliest possible opportunity.

H

H1b
Nonimmigrant visa classification for temporary professional workers in a specialty occupation. Nonimmigrant visa classification reserved for temporary professional workers in a specialty occupation. Most of the applicant comes with IT /Engineering background. This is the most popular non-immigrant visa category.
H1-C
Nonimmigrant visa classification for qualified nurses to work for up to three years in health professional shortage areas.
H-2A
Nonimmigrant visa for temporary agriculture workers whose services are needed in the United States.
H-2B
Nonimmigrant visa for temporary/ seasonal workers providing services / labor for a one-time occurrence, a seasonal need, a peak load need or an intermittent need.
H-3
Nonimmigrant visa classification reserved for individuals who will be receiving training in the U.S.
H-4
Nonimmigrant visa for dependent spouses and children of H-1B, H-2 and H-3 nonimmigrants.
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This process permits each H1b individual to transfer, amend or extend a valid H-1B visa status to a new H-1B employer once a new petition is filed with USCIS by the new employer to authorize work with the new or existing employer if only extending the visa.

I

I-94
An I-94 is a form denoting the Arrival-Departure Record of particular foreigners used by U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP). This form is no longer used. Travelers arriving by air or sea will no longer receive a paper I-94. Travelers will still receive an admission stamp in their passport noting the ‘date of admission’, the ‘status admitted in’, and the ‘admitted until’ date. Please note that travelers crossing at land border ports of entry will continue to receive a paper I-94. Travelers will be able to access an electronic version of the I-94 record by visiting http://www.cbp.gov/I94. This record can be printed when applying for immigration or public benefits, such as a driver’s license or Social Security Number.
IMMIGRANT VISA
An immigrant visa is a document issued by a U.S. consular officer abroad that allows you to travel to the United States and apply for admission as a legal permanent resident (LPR). An immigration inspector of U.S. Customs and Border Protection of the Department of Homeland Security makes the final decision as to whether or not to admit you as an LPR.Once you are admitted as an LPR, you generally have the right to live and work in the United States permanently.

J

J1-VISA
Anyone coming to the U.S. under the auspices of an educational or cultural exchange is eligible for this visa, including researchers, exchange students, dancers, and performers.

L

LABOR CONDITION APPLICATION ( LCA)
The Department of Labor’s Form ETA-9035 is also a Labor Condition Application. This certification is when an employer attests that the foreign national worker will be paid a higher wage than what would be the normal wage for that position or a similar position with the employer. The wage is based upon the prevailing wage paid by other employers in the geographic area.
LABOR CERTIFICATION
This is the first step in the permanent resident process. It involves your employer proving it cannot find a U.S. worker to do the job you're doing.
LONG DRIVE
Driving longer or driving for leisure to a certain destination. If you hear someone saying that I just took my wife for a long drive means the person took the wife with him for leisure to a certain destination.

M

MIDDLE MAN Or MAN In MIDDLE
In the IT contracting assignment, between the employer and employee , if there are more layers of companies involved in the contractual assignment means there are men in the middle who also earns the commission. For example, if Nishit ‘s H1-B visa is stamped with the Dhokha Concepts as employer’s name it means that Dhokha Concepts is the real employer of Nishit. However, if Dhokha Concepts sells the Nishit’s IT expertise to the company called Alexander Consulting , and Alexander Consulting sells Nishit’s IT service to Jet One then Alexander Consulting is called a middle man ! Sometime there are multiple layers of companies like this one.

N

NON-IMMIGRANT VISA
A nonimmigrant visa is the visa issued to persons with a permanent residence outside the U.S. but who wishes to be in the U.S. on a temporary basis (i.e. Tourism, medical treatment, business, temporary work, or study. H1B visa is a non-immigrant visa.
H-1A: Registered nurses.
H-1B: Workers with "specialty occupations" admitted on the basis of professional education, skills, and/or equivalent experience. More on H-1B visas
H-1C: Registered nurses to work in areas with a shortage of health professionals under the Nursing Relief for Disadvantaged Areas Act of 1999.
H-2A: Temporary agricultural workers coming to the United States to perform agricultural services or labor of a temporary or seasonal nature when authorised workers are unavailable in the United States.
H-2B: Temporary non-agricultural workers coming to the United States to perform temporary services or labour if unemployed persons capable of performing the service or labour cannot be found in the US.
H-3: Aliens coming temporarily to the United States as trainees, other than to receive graduate medical education or training.
H-4: Visa for the spouse of an H-1B visa holder.
L-1 Intracompany Transferee Visa: An alien, employed for at least one continuous year out of the last three by an international firm or corporation, who seeks to enter the United States temporarily in order to continue to work for the same employer, or a subsidiary or affiliate, in a capacity that is primarily managerial, executive, or involves specialised knowledge, and the alien’s spouse and minor unmarried children.
O-1, O-2, O-3: Temporary workers with extraordinary ability or achievement in the sciences, arts, education, business, or athletics; those entering solely for the purpose of accompanying and assisting such workers; and their spouses and children.
P-1, P-2, P-3, P-4: Athletes and entertainers at an internationally recognised level of performance; artists and entertainers under a reciprocal exchange program; artists and entertainers under a program that is "culturally unique"; and their spouses and children.
Q-1, Q-2, Q-3: Participants in international cultural exchange programs; participants in the Irish Peace Process Cultural and Training Program; and spouses and children of Irish Peace Process participants.
R-1, R-2: Temporary workers to perform work in religious occupations and their spouses and children.
NATURALIZATION
The final process to obtain citizenship. It is the application process by which one not a citizen by birth may become a U.S. citizen (USC). The basic criteria for naturalization are (a) Lawful Permanent Resident (LPR) status for 5 years (3 years if married to USC); (b) at least 18 years old; (c) physically present for half of the 5-year (or 3- year) period; (d) maintenance of U.S. residence with no lengthy trips abroad; and (e) good moral character.

P

PREVALING WAGE
The average wage of workers that are similarly employed within the area of intended employment.
PORT OF ENTRY
Any location in the United States or its territories that is designated as a point of entry for aliens and US citizens. All district and files control offices are also considered ports, since they become locations of entry for aliens adjusting to immigrant status.
PROJECT
An IT related services to be rendered at the client side for certain duration. You will also often a term called my project is 6 month long, means client needs the consultant for 6 month only. My project is ongoing means although it ends at certain date, but it gets renewed for another couple of months or years.
PHARMACY
Pharmacy In India we go to Medical store to buy medicine. But in USA, the medical store is known as Pharmacy.
PINK SLIP

Pink slip refers to the American practice, by a personnel department, of including a discharge notice in an employee's pay envelope to notify the worker of his or her termination of employment or layoff.

The origin of the phrase is unknown. There is no evidence that termination notices are, or ever were, conventionally printed on pink paper. However, many applications (including termination papers) are done in triplicate form, with each copy on a different color of paper, one of which is typically pink.

PRIORITY DATE
The date an immigrant visa petition is filed with immigration or in some cases the date of a Labour Certification Application is first filed with a State Labour Department. The priority date determines your place in line in an immigrant preference category

R

REQUEST FOR EVIDENCE
When an application is pending with USCIS, many times they come back asking for further evidence. Such evidence could be regarding anything such as applicant's continued employment, company's financial position and ability to pay, applicant's medical condition etc.
RECEIPT NOTICE
A Department of Homeland Security (DHS) form Notice of Action, I-797, which says that the DHS has received a petition ( the application).
RED TAPE
Red tape is excessive regulation or rigid conformity to formal rules that is considered redundant or bureaucratic and hinders or prevents action or decision-making. It is usually applied to governments, corporations, and other large organizations.

S

SEASONS IN USA
Spring - March, April & May
Summer- June, July & August
Fall - September, October & November
Winter - December, January & February
This is very generalized because it varies by where you are in the USA.
SPECIALITY OCCUPATION
An applicant is eligible for an H-IB visa ((work visa) if the job requires a university degree in a specific field. Examples include engineering, architecture, Information Technology etc. If the job does not require a specific degree it is not a specialty occupation. For example plumbing or electrician's job or driving will not fall in this category, as it does not require a university degree. Even if the plumber has a university degree, he is not eligible for the H-1B Visa for performing the plumbing related job in USA !
STATUS
Your immigration or non-immigrant status in USA. For example, a visitor on valid visitor visa is in visitor status. Your non-immigration status and the time you can stay in America is generally indicated on your passport. If someone ask you what's your status ? It means whether you are staying in USA on H1B or visitor visa or something else?
SFH ( SINGLE FAMILY HOME)
A single-family home, also called a single dwelling or separate house is a free-standing residential building.

T

TICKET OR SPEEDING TICKET
A motor officer ( usually a traffic police) writes a traffic ticket for a motorist accused of speeding. A traffic ticket is a notice issued by a law enforcement official to a motorist or other road user, accusing violation of traffic laws.

V

VENDOR
Vendor
The company you represent at the client side is called vendor. For example if Dhokha Concepts places you at JetOne through a company called Alexander Consulting. Then Alexander Consulting is known as the JetOne’s vendor. And JetOne’s vendor has sold the consulting service ( IT expertise) to the Vendor.
VISA
A permit for a person to apply to enter the United States. A person applies for a visa in the consular section of an American embassy or consulate abroad. Most citizens of foreign countries need visas to enter the United States. Under U.S. law the Department of State has responsibility for issuing visas, and most visas are issued at one of the Department of State embassies and consulates abroad. A consular officer decides whether you are qualified for a visa. A visa doesn't authorize entry to the U.S., however. A visa simply indicates that your application has been reviewed by a U.S. consular officer at an American embassy or consulate, and that the officer determined you're eligible to travel to the port-of-entry for a specific purpose. At the port-of-entry and admission to the U.S., an immigration officer decides whether to allow you to enter. The immigration officer tells you how long you can stay for any particular visit, and records this on your passport. Only the Department of Homeland Security, U.S. immigration officer has the authority to permit you to enter the United States.