Thursday, August 10, 2017

US Passport for Minor

The information provided on this blog post may not be accurate or is out of date. Please refer to the official website for up to date and accurate information. 

Steps to apply for US Passport for newborn:

  1. Take an appointment at USPS if it takes appointments and has availability as per your schedule. Or walk in. If walking in, be prepared for long wait times at USPS. You might even have to go very early to get token.
  2. Both parents and the new born have to be physically present. If one of the parent is not able to come, check the site for the documents needed for absence of a parent.
  3. Completed Application form (DS-11) - Better to fill online and print it. Or you may download PDF and fill with pen.
  4. Original Birth Certificate of new born (One) - Proof of citizenship
  5. Copy of Birth Certificate of new born (One) - Proof of relationship to parents
  6. Passport size 2x2 photo (One) - see photo guidelines
  7. Copy Both Parents ID - (One) Photo copy of Drivers License or Passport or refer here 
  8. Have the Parents ID with you to show to the agent at USPS
  9. After applying you can check the status of your application here. It may take a week or two to show up in the system.
  10. For official instructions for passport application for minor click here
Steps to apply for India Visa for minor

Documents to take care after new born - Person of Indian Origin

The above details is may not be accurate. Please refer to official site for up-to-date and accurate information.

Useful Links:
US Passport FAQ
How to Apply US Passport?
SSN for children
SSN processing times

India Visa for Minor

The information provided on this blog post may not be accurate or is out of date. Please refer to the official website for up to date and accurate information.

Application Steps:


Step 1 (CKGS)
Start at CKGS visa application
If you decide to ship the documents, it is better to pay shipping online instead of paying your own shipping outside the application
After completing CKGS form, you will be provided a TEMP ID and redirected to indianvisaonline.gov.in site (Govt website).

Step 2 (GOVT SITE)
Start a "Regular Visa Application" here. (Note: Do not click "Complete Partially Filled Form" when you come here for the first time. This is for those who want to continue the Govt website section later after visiting atleast once)
You will be given another TEMP ID which you can use to continue this section later
Once you are done here, you can download/print the application form. Also you will given an APPLICATION ID (which can be used to download the application form later).
You will see "Book Appointment" button even if you have chosen shipping. Go ahead and click the button you will be redirected back to CKGS website where you will fill the necessary additional forms

Step 3 (CKGS)
Fill the additional particular form

Step 4 (CKGS)
Parental authorization for minors

Step 5 (CKGS)
Payment

Step 6 (CKGS)
Print all the forms, receipts, label and barcode (you will have links to all the forms which you can download or print)
- Checklist
- Visa Application Form
- Additional Particulars Form
- Parental Authorization for Minors
- Payment Receipt
- Shipping Label
- Barcode

You will have to print a page containing bar code along with shipping label. The barcode need to be affixed below the shipping label.
You do not need to print the return shipping. You will just be paying for it. CKGS will print the label when they are ready to ship back the document.

Once you have mailed or submitted the documents in person, you can track the status by going to  in.ckgs.us and to "My Account".

Supporting Documents:

- Birth Certificate (copy)
- Passport (Original)
- Passport (copy of bio page)
- Both Parent's Passport (copy of bio page)
- Both Parent's Address Proof - Drivers License or other relevant document (refer checklist)
- Both Parent's legal residence proof if Non-US passport - Visa or Work Permit
- Passport size photo (Note: Photo should be different from that on the Passport bio page)

Place the documents in the same order as mentioned in the checklist

Application Tracking - Sample Timeline:








The tracking timeline will vary for each application.

Day 0Tue18:00Mailed documents & passport to CKGS (Shipping paid via CKGS)
Day 1Wed14:21Received by CKGS, Not Verified
Day 2Thu13:39Verified by CKGS
16:34Under Process at CKGS
20:59In transit to Consulate
Day 3Fri12:54Under process at Consulate
18:48Reviewed and In transit to CKGS
21:02Received by CKGS and is at Sorting facility
Day 4Mon14:18Dispatch
Day 5Tue13:24Received passport by mail


FAQ:

Should I apply Visa or OCI?
For a minor, OCI need to be renewed every time the passport need to be renewed (after 5 years). The cost is not a factor as renewal cost is just a fraction of the initial OCI application cost. Though initial cost is higher for OCI, the total long term costs would be cheaper than Visa.

OCI:
Advantages
- Can stay longer than 180 days during a visit
- Can own property in minor's name
- Only initial cost is higher than that of Visa. Renewal charges are much less than that of Visa.
Disadvantages:
- Takes longer to get OCI

Visa:
Advantages
- Quicker to get compared to OCI
- If you get lucky, your visa could be approved for 10 years, which means you need not renew after 5 years.
Disadvantages
- Can stay up to 180 days during any visit
- Cannot own property in minor's name
- Pay the similar amount every time you apply. Total cost over the longer term is higher than that of OCI.


What is the URL for the Govt website? CKGS mentions Govt website everywhere but does not say what the URL is.

What type of visa should be applied for minor (Person of Indian Origin)? - Tourist or Entry Visa? "Minor Child (either) Parent is Indian" - 3,6,12,60 or "Tourism".
You may apply for either Tourist Visa or Entry Visa
Entry Visa is given only to Person of Indian Origin
Entry Visa can be extended beyond the validity period by approaching the concerned FRROs/FROs cum Superintendents of Police (http://boi.gov.in/content/information-foreigners-possessing-entry-x-visa-2)
Entry Visa cost varies by validity with higher cost for longer validity. So, in terms of cost, Tourist visa is better as you get 5 years Tourist visa at the same price range as Entry Visa for few months.
If you decide to apply Tourist Visa, its better to start from https://www.in.ckgs.us/visa/tourist-visa instead of https://www.in.ckgs.us/visa

Date of Travel? Date of leaving your country or Date of arrival in India?
You may specify the date of arrival to be in sync with the date in the second half of the application (govt website)

Duration of Visa?
This is not the duration of stay, its the duration of validity of the visa.

Duration of visa in months for minor?
You may specify the maximum you wish to obtain (120 months). But its up to the visa officer to decide the validity. Minor are usually given 5 years (60 months). You may get lucky and get 120 months visa for minor. If it happens, you may not have to re-apply for visa after 5 years even though you will have to renew your passport. I believe, the visa on the expired passport should be valid even after 5 years (until 10 years). Please correct me if I am wrong in the comments.

Have you stayed in the country for 2 years?
"Yes" is fine for a minor less than 2 years who has not left the country. Note that answer to this question is derived from your answers. Not sure which answers relate to this question

Apartment name is a required field and I don't have a apartment name. What do i do?
You may split the street name into two and specify the second half in apartment name instead of specifying NA. This way, the summary of the form doesn't look weird. However, when this address is used for shipping label, you will see a comma between the street address and apartment address. It will give you an option to auto correct which you can use to fix the address.

I chose shipping but I see book appointment after filling online application form (govt website)
Just click the button. Ignore whats written on it.

Do I need to upload the photo? If I upload, don't I need to affix the photo on the application form.
Uploading photo is optional. You will have to fix the photo on the form independent of if you upload or not. Not sure what is the purpose of uploading the photo.

Thumb impression and signature on the Visa Application form
For minor if using thumb impression, put thumb impression on the first page and second page. On the second page, both the parents should also sign below the thumb impression

The Checklist mentions I need to send a prepaid envelope for the return documents along with the application. I already paid for the shipping while filling the application online. Is the prepaid envelope still needed?
-- Will update the answer soon -- If you know the answer, please let me know in the comments. Your comments greatly appreciated.

Documents to take care after new born - Person of Indian Origin

The above details may not be accurate. Please refer to official site for up-to-date and accurate information.

Appreciate your comments.

Sunday, July 23, 2017

Documents to take care after a new born baby - Person of Indian Origin


The information provided on this blog post may not be accurate or is out of date. Please refer to the official website for up to date and accurate information.
  1. Follow doctors advice and take care of your baby
  2. Before leaving the hospital, fill the application for Birth Certificate and SSN and submit to representative (VitalStatistics in Kaiser) at the hospital. How long does it take to get SSN card that I applied in hospital?
  3. Identify and chose your pediatrician
  4. Add the new born child to your insurance (usually through your employer)
  5. Request Cop(y/ies) of Birth Certificate online (may be few days later) / in person (4 weeks later)
  6. Prepare documents needed for US passport (Birth Certificate, SSN, Photos, Parents ID). In most cases, Birth Certificate can be used as proof of nationality and parent relationship to the child)
  7. US Passport application
    • Fill the US Passport application
    • US Passport can be applied at USPS locations (regular or expedite processing) or at Passport agencies (for emergencies or faster than expedite processing)
    • Photos may be taken at some USPS locations, but it might be easier to take the photos in advance by yourself or at a studio
    • Passport Application helpline: 1-877-487-2778
    • Some USPS locations accept Passport applications by appointment only. It might be better to go to locations that takes appointments as you don't have to wait in lines for hours. But on the downside, appointments may not be available immediately. So you might have to take an appointment even before the baby is born, if you have urgent travel needs. Check the appointment availability with your USPS location (if they take appointments). In places which do not take appointments, you will be able to apply on a specific day, if you are among the first few people in the line. I have heard, some places require you to stand in line for few hours before the location opens.
  8. If traveling to a country, you will need to apply visa. Some countries allow on arrival visa. Check with corresponding country visa consulate website for more details. If you are Indian origin, you have 2 options. Visa or OCI. For a new born, both Visa and OCI are valid only for 5 years. With a Visa, the baby can stay for up to 180 days. Visa is preferred, unless the baby will stay longer than 6 months in India. Another reason for OCI would be if you want to invest in the name of the baby. Getting a Visa is much easier and faster than OCI, so Visa is preferred until the age of 15. In order to get a Visa, you will need to submit the US passport and should get back the passport with the Visa stamp in 2-3 weeks. For OCI for new born, you do not need to submit the US Passport. But it will take 8-10 weeks for you to get the OCI card. You may apply for OCI card and travel outside US on a Visa while the OCI application is pending.
  9. OCI vs Visa (India Visa for minor):
OCI
Advantages
- Can stay longer than 180 days during a visit
- Can own property in minor's name
- Only initial cost is higher than that of Visa. Renewal charges are much less than that of Visa.
Disadvantages:
- Takes longer to get OCI

Visa
Advantages
- Quicker to get compared to OCI
- If you get lucky, your visa could be approved for 10 years, which means you need not renew after 5 years.
Disadvantages
- Can stay up to 180 days during any visit
- Cannot own property in minor's name
- Pay the similar amount every time you apply. Total cost over the longer term is higher than that of OCI.
The above details is may not be accurate. Please refer to official site for up-to-date and accurate information.

Useful Links:
US Passport FAQ
How to Apply US Passport?
SSN for children
SSN processing times

Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Get paid to be healthy

1. Humana Vitality

2. AchieveMint - Register and forget about it. Earn passively. Max 80 points per day, $10 for 10,000 points. 250 points for referrals.

3. Pact app

4. Higi.com

5. Leap4Life

Please refer to the corresponding website for accurate information about rewards.

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