L1B Visa Approved with Dependents (Wife and daughter) - Chennai - August 2022
This community helped me for preparation and I am sharing my experience.
VAC center/OFC appointment: Appointment at 8.30
We reached at 8.15 fat VAC center. They allowed entry after checking the appointment letter, ds160 confirmation and passport. Inside at one counter, they verified all the details and noted that my daughter's given name was not as per her passport. I went down to cyber cafe on the ground floor and the lady over there immediately corrected it and I was back upstairs within 5 minutes. Next, we waited in the queue for 5 mins for Photo and Biometrics. The entire process should not more than 15 mins if all your information is accurate.
Next Day Visa Interview at Consulates: 8.30 appointment time:
We reached at 8 and they allowed us to enter. There was a separate queue for L1 and the person asked to make 2 sets of I-129S and the first page of I-797, later he put rubber band on those documents along with our passport and DS160 (primary applicant). After that, we went to the next building where the interview was happening over various counters. They asked us to go to one counter where someone was checking documents, they will also scan photos of kids if applicable at this counter.
After that we paid fraud detection fees at a different counter, I was carrying cash however person at the counter insisted credit card which I gave him. After that, a person immediately pointed us to stand in front of a window where an interview was already happening. We were next:
Questions in sequence:
VO - Greetings, asked us to hand over documents and passport
Me - Greetings, followed by my documents
VO - What is your salary?
Me - Answered
VO - What will be your US Salary?
Me - Answered
VO - What specialized knowledge do you have?
Me - Answered
VO - Asked follow-up questions on my answer (basically why it specialized)
Me - Tried my best to answer in layman's terms (but she interrupted me with the next question)
VO - What's your company do?
Me - Explained
Asked my wife to come forward:
VO - Your name and highest qualifications
She took some time to enter details into the computer and after approx. 1 min said that your Visa is approved and handed me over stamped copy of I-129S and green slip.
YOU WILL SEE TOO MANY CANDIDATES FOR INTERVIEWS, MOSTLY STUDENT VISA RELATED. BE CONFIDENT. THERE WILL BE A VERY SHORT AMOUNT OF TIME AVAILABLE FOR INTERVIEWS SO PREPARE WELL FOR ANSWERS BASED ON THE TYPE OF VISA. MAKE ANOTHER VERSION OF YOUR ANSWER WHICH YOU CAN EXPLAIN IN LAYMAN'S TERMS TO VO. ALL THE BEST.
L1,L2 stuck at application received status after interview
Hi. I went for my L1 visa interview on Jul 22 with my wife who is applying for L2.
The interview was very smooth and finished in 2-3 minutes with the consular telling us that our case was approved and we should get our passport back in about a week.
It's been 12 days since then and our status is still at Application Received. We see that the last updated date changed twice during this time, the most recent updated was Aug 4 for us and Aug 3 for our daughter.
I know it is a busy season for them but my colleague who interviewed 2 weeks before us received her passport back in a week.
Is there anything to worry about? Has anyone had similar experiences?
My L1B got approved on July 18th. Everything was smooth. My experience wasn’t much different than most of the other people who shared their experiences.
I stayed in The Park. This is very well located for all the VISA aspirants as it is merely 1.2 km from biometrics location & walkable from consulate. Don’t waste money in superior room. Their deluxe room has better facilities than superior room! Make sure to ask for non-smoking room unless you want otherwise. In smoking rooms, you will get the smoke smell. The breakfast buffet is good. Dinner buffet also has good options, but the taste is very much plain & non-spicy.
If you are making hotel arrangement on your own & don’t want to shell out more money, I saw couple of more hotels which are just behind The Park. The two hotels are The Kings Park grand & Hotel Palmgrove.
There are some good restaurants around. Gangotree chats is very famous which is at a couple of km distance. Barbeque nation is about a couple km distance. MacD, KFC is walkable distance. Saw couple of more restaurants. Plus there is always an option of ordering food online.
Must visit VGP marine Kingdome which has underwater tunnel with marine fishes like Sharks & sting rays.
Biometrics on July 13th @ 8:30 am:
Documents to carry:
Passports for all, DS160 confirmation for all & appointment confirmation (only 1 for all). Keep the DS160 confirmation page inside respective passport similar to bookmark.
This was pretty simple, came out within 25 mins. Reached there around 8 am. You can take an auto or book the cab. Generally you will find couple of auto guys always on the road standing between entry & exit gate of The Park hotel. Auto fare is pretty standard (& inflated) – Rs 150 single trip.
Cellphones in switched off mode are allowed. I told security guard that I have cellphone in switched off mode.
There was already a queue on road outside the gate. With L1 blanket & /or family, don’t stand in that queue & directy go to the guard who allows going inside the campus. They will send you in after verifying the time & date on appointment confirmation.
There are people at all the points where one could get confused or multiple paths. So not to worry & follow them. The main queue starts on the stairs itself. The biometrics happens at second floor.
Your details on passport & biometrics get verified letter by letter so make sure everything on DS160 confirmation page is per passport.
At the second checkpoint after entering the second floor, one barcode label gets pasted at backside of the passport. It has your passport number, both biometric & consular appointment details (date & Time) etc… make sure that all info is correct & it is pasted properly. In case of multiple people like dependents, make sure that the barcodes aren’t swapped.
In case of dependents usually kids & wife will be sent to one counter & you will be sent to another counter.
At counter, they will ask to read the consent, then they will verify again everything on DS160 is per passport. After that they take your photo followed by fingerprints. Once done, they will ask to stay present for the interview which is scheduled at xxx time & At xxx date. They stamp your DS160.
While exiting the building, one more person will make sure that DS160 & then only send you out.
There are plenty of autos standing outside the gate to come back OR even you can book a cab,
Finding parking for own car is difficult there. So opt auto/cab option as much as possible.
Visa interview on July 18th, 2022 @11:30 am
Total time taken: 35 minutes. 10 minutes wasted because of payment guy was on break.
Passports for all, stamped DS160 confirmation for only primary applicant, I129-S all 8 pages (2 sets), I797 only 1 page (2 sets) + Visa fraud detection fees receipt you will get in the consulate after payment of the fees. These are compulsory documents asked by interviewer.
Remaining all other supporting documents in back-up
Reached there by 11:00 am. Was a long queue mostly for F1 standing on footpath. 11:00 am F1 people werent’ yet let in. Again here, we let in after confirming our date & time slot. Here security just asked whether carrying any electronics.
After entering first building, multiple F1 people in queue. There is a desk on left side once you enter the hallway of first building. Usually, a person will be there. But during my time, after preparing my documents, she left for some time. So, if no one is there wait for some time to get the documents arranged.
Again, at all points of confusion or where there are multiple paths emerge, there will be someone to guide you. Just tell everyone that you are L1 Blanket & by-pass all the queues!
Need to fold DS160 confirmation for primary applicant int center on the longer edge. Need to fold 129-S & I-797 only 1 page together in half along vertical line. Do it for both the sets. Keep folded DS160 on top such that barcode in top side, then 2 folded sets of I129-S & I-797 back-to-back each other such that the place for stamp faces upwards & then all passports (sequence doesn’t matter for passports). All of this will be in a rubber band. This all the docs arrangement you have to do.
After this we moved to next building again by-passing a huge queue & landed in the hallway where interviews were going on. They will ask to sit for a while until your turn comes to pay the visa fees. Saw 3 F1 rejections & couple of F1 & L1 approvals.
At visa fees counter, make a payment by card cash or DD. I didn’t carry cash/DD. Paid by card. There is one ATM in first building where you can withdraw cash. Once fees are paid, he will get you two receipts. One will be stapled to your documents & other will be handed over ot you. If paid by card, you need to sign the receipt. Not worry here as well, as he will guide you.
After that I was immediately sent to window #25, where this famous American bald guy was interviewing & I got relaxed. Adjacent to our windows were famous scrutinizing lady & that Latin American guy who is famous for rejections!
Conversation with VO:
He was observing us since we were in a queue.
Greeted with each other. He was reading something form I129 & something on computer.
VO: Which company?
VO: What are your products?
I: We make XXXX products & supply to XXX companies. (VO seems confused here as I used technical jargons what attorney was mentioned). In simpler words, we make machines which make xxxx.
VO: ahh! I liked that simpler answer very much & started laughing. So, you make machines which make XXX. Then who makes the machines to make your machines? We all started laughing…& then he said it is kind of a chicken & egg story, isn’t it?
By this time, he had stamped both I129-S.
VO: So, are going for few months?
I: Yes. (I’m going to perform some experiments to qualify ur products & not a relocation case)
VO: Let me know if I’m right. So, you will be on India payroll, with stay & transportation provided by company & plus you will get daily allowances (per diem)
By this time, our passports were in the bin & I was happy as hell!!! 😊
VO: Where you will be staying:
Then he asked to scan 4 fingers of left hand.
To my wife scan 4 fingers of right hand & parallelly asked what she will be doing there. She answered it.
VO: Conratualtions1 your visa is approved. Have a wonderful stay in US.
We: Thank you!
On the day of interview i.e. July 18th, 2022 @ 10 pm: Status: No status
Jul 19th, 2022 @ 7 am: Status: Administrative processing
July 19th, 2022 @ 6 pm: Status: Issued
July 20th, 2022 @ 7 am: Status: Issued
July 20th, 2022 @ 8 am: Received SMS from Bluedart that shipment will be delivered today.
July 20th, 2022 @ 11 am: Passports delivered (delivery location: Bangalore & were shipped from Chennai around 5 p on July 19th itself)
Few other things to note:
I wore just formals & no blazer for interview. I felt, the blazer is not really required. Formals are enough. Though, if not wearing blazer & looking at other people in blazer, if you feel nervous, then wear the blazer. Do, all that what you could to boost your confidence!
Biometrics, you can even go in causal. It is just for your photo & fingerprints.
Answer all questions confidently & keep them limited to 2-3 sentences. There is word document online which has summed up all these questions pretty nicely. Write down you answers there & read them & the petition support letters provided by your attorney for your case. This really helps & you don’t end up in confusion.
My attorney told, mainly the chanaces of rejections are if your compensation is not that good OR not enough experience in existing company. So, at time you need to be thoroughly prepared for technical. He told; my case is strong & I may not expect anything on technical side of it. & Same happened.
From Park hotel to consulate entrance is ~400 meters walk. For that also, auto guys will tell you that the gate has moved back, you can’t walk with kid. Auto guys charge heftily. 150 per trip. They will even mention I’ll wait for you. Once Visa approved you give me whatever your wish but they expect atelast Rs 500 for round trip + waiting charge. So, if you with your kid could manage to walk for 400 m, avoid taking auto. There are plenty of autos waiting at consulate. So, don’t get into the deal of auto guy waiting over there. Confirm the fare before you get into an auto.
Park hotel considers late check-out upto 1 pm. Post 1 pm, they charge half a day rent. Since my appointment was at 11:30, we requested them for late checkout.
Ola, Uber & auto everything works fine in Chennai. So, no issues for roaming around.
Apologies for a long answer but tried to provide all logistics & other details as they maybe helpful & I haven’t seen many posting them. Since most of the Visa experience is same as other, thought to concentrate more on this side as well.
Feel free to reply/connect if anymore details are needed Or sharing your inputs.
First of all, A big thanks to all of you. This portal has been big help.
1- Dress - It shows how serious are you. I mean we don't to date in flip flops or shirt without iron. right?
2- Eye contact - It's interview 101. isn't it?
3- Proper greet and body language- Not just on paper, your body must say that I am that engineer, lead or manager which you reading on your system.
4- Organized- Good folder, documents with clip on it not stapler, a sticky book mark to know which one is your resume or SOW out of entire bundle to avoid being clumsy there.
I went to VAC on 14th and it was smooth. Nothing to mention here except documents required: DS160 Confirmation, Appointment letter, ID and passport (get recent expired passport too).
15th is the sunny day with high humid which made me regret wearing suit but it gave fruitful result. I reached 10 minutes before and then it took 20 minutes to complete security check and queue.
Final queue in front of VO- A boy was ahead of me for F1 and little eavesdropping gave me an idea that my VO is cool. he looked like supercool Hollywood villain. As he gave an approval to this student with a big smile which boosted my confidence.
VO: Good morning, sir (with cheerful smile)
Me: Good morning officer.
VO: Nice jacket
ME: Thanks you (with a smile but he couldn't see because of N95. Damn it!)
VO: (After scrolling through the computer) In what line of work your company is?
ME: In 3-4 lines I have explained. Make sure you don't start reading brochure of your firm.
VO: Have you travelled before?
ME: Yes, from 20XX to 20XX.
VO: I see, you have applied L1 Blanket before but didn't get approved.
ME: I did explain about role change, change in task and technology etc. which leads me to apply for Individual.
VO: How long working with this company.
ME: XX Years.
VO: Aren't your spouse going with you?
ME: Yes, she will. She got appointment in different slot.
Now VO took more than 5 minutes typing and scrolling through the computer which made me nervous as hell. After that he said most beautiful sentence of the year "You visa is approved."
Tip: Being nervous is ok, little here in there for words are ok as you are not for Oscar speech. What matters most is your preparation like dress up, proper greet, organized documents etc. which shows that you did your homework and its serious business for you. People do get nervous which is one of the thing make us human. If you lost your thoughts for answer, take a gasp, wait and then restart.
Another thing is don't answer for questions he/she didn't ask. Sometimes they just ask what is your tool and we end up answering our tool, specialization, why is better and all. I mean if you answer for just tool maybe he ask specialization as second question. So, avoid giving extra explanation as it's not Indian board school answer sheet.
I came to Canada on the 26th of June for my L1 A visa at the Calgary US consulate.
5th July - Appointment completed
5th evening - Admin Processing
6th July - DS160 - Status changed to issued
Current date: 12th July and not update yet
Its been more than 7 days since my appointment, I have a family emergency in US and I need to be there ASAP. Is there a way I can collect the passport earlier or any way to let the consulate know about my situation?
Thanks to this forum that helped me a lot in preparing for our Visa journey.
Biometrics : This was completed first week of June 2022. Myself, wife and 2 kids (10 yrs and 6 yrs) came to VAC 30 minutes before and the entire process was completed in less than 30 minutes.
Consulate Interview : I received the appointment after 12 days of completing biometrics; so technically, had to fly twice to Chennai. We arrived at the consulate around 25 minutes before the scheduled time and there was already a huge queue.
After the security checks, we were asked to move to the waiting area. After checking the papers and arranging them in the prescribed order, went to the main building and was asked to wait in the queue for completing the payment. Once payment was done, again was asked to wait in the queue for the interview. The discussion went as below
VO : Good morning; how are you?
Me : I am great thanks and yourself?
VO: Good too; please pass your documents
(I passed the document set. He looked at our passports and documents)
VO: Please scan your left four fingers
(Once I scanned by fingers and the VO asked my wife to scan her right four fingers. Then he asked my wife and kids to wait at the seating area)
VO: So you are applying for L1A
Me: That’s correct
VO: How long you are with XXXXX
Me: I completed 3 years and 2 months
VO: Who is your client in US and which location?
Me: Our client is XXXXX and the location is YYYYYY
VO: What will be your salary?
Me: Its XXX,XXX
VO: What’s your wife's qualification?
Me: She is a doctor and her qualification is Bachelors in XXXXX
(VO started typing on his system for 2 minutes and at the end he stamped on my I-129S)
VO: Your visa has been approved and you will receive the passports in 1 week. Have a nice day
(VO hands over the I-129S, Green slip and copy of the fee receipt)
1. Attire : If you are applying for L1A, I believe this matters a lot. I was in a suit and tie
2. Be confident and be clear when you speak
3. Always maintain eye contact (even if the visa offer is not looking at you)
If you have any questions, please do reply and will be happy to answer.
Can L1B get rejected based on years of experience?
I am an Engineer working with an Investment Bank in US. I am in the process of applying for my L1B. I am confident on the product and technology I am working with. But, being a 3 year experienced, is it going to affect my chances of getting Visa approved?
Disclaimer: Please note that the experiences presented are submitted by visitors to our website. Individuals’ experiences may vary, and you should interpret each individual’s experience at your own risk. Do not make a decision solely based on an experience posted here. We do not endorse any individuals’ experiences, and we are not liable or responsible for consequences stemming from your use of the information presented within any individual’s experience.