Complete Guide to OCI Renewal in the U.S.
Posted by Frank Gogol in Immigrants | Updated on November 15, 2022
OCI has been a game-changer since it was introduced in 2005, in response to the demand for dual citizenship. While PIO has always been around, it lacked several features that a foreigner of Indian origin would expect. An OCI card functions like an Indian visa, which provides you with many of the benefits of an NRI. In this article, we will discuss who should renew their OCI card and how to do it.
Table of Contents
What Is an OCI Card?
Overseas Citizenship of India (OCI) is a type of immigration status granted to a foreign national of Indian origin. The OCI card can be used to legally live and work in India indefinitely. This is the closest thing to dual citizenship offered by the Indian government since the Constitution of India prevents anyone from holding dual citizenship.
What is the Purpose of an OCI Card?
An OCI card certifies that you are a foreign citizen of Indian origin and are allowed to live and work in India. Per the Indian Home Ministry, you are eligible for an OCI card if:
- You were eligible to become an Indian citizen on Jan. 26, 1950.
- You belonged to a state or territory that became part of India after Aug. 15, 1947.
- You are a child/grandchild/great-grandchild of such a person.
- You are a minor child of such a person mentioned above.
- You are a minor child of a citizen of India.
- You are the spouse of a foreign citizen of Indian origin or an OCI cardholder.
You must satisfy at least one of the above requirements to apply for an OCI card. You are not eligible if you or your parents are citizens of Pakistan or Bangladesh.
Renunciation of Indian Citizenship
Before applying for an OCI card, you must apply for renunciation of Indian citizenship, since India does not allow dual citizenship. If you have an Indian passport, you are required to surrender it.
Once the OCI card is issued to you, you can enjoy the following privileges:
- Multiple-entry, multi-purpose lifelong visa for visiting India
- Exemption from certain foreigner registration requirements
- Benefits on par with NRIs, whether it be financial, economic, or educational
When to Renew Your OCI Card
The OCI card comes with lifetime validity and does not need to be re-applied for. But to keep records up to date, the OCI registration certificate and visa sometimes have to be re-issued. OCI cards need to be renewed in the following cases:
New Passports Issued up to Age 20
OCI cardholders under the age of 20 are required to renew their OCI card each time they receive a new passport within a stipulated time frame. Along with renewing OCI documents, they have to pay applicable fees as required.
New Passport Upon Turning 50
Once you reach the age of 50, you must apply for OCI card renewal and have your visa re-issued. For those between the ages of 21 and 50, there are no mandatory requirements to get your card re-issued. Similarly, after the age of 50, it is not mandatory to renew your OCI card every time you get a new passport. You can show your old passport with the OCI “U” visa stamp along with your new passport, and it’ll be accepted. As of 2015, it is no longer necessary to get your OCI “U” visa transferred to your new passport when your old one expires. So you can relax. If your old passport expires, you can travel to India with your expired passport, your OCI card, and a new valid passport.
In Cases of New Documents
When you get new documents that affect your old passport, you need to re-apply for OCI registration and get the new OCI visa with a “U” stamp on it. Fees apply. After you get your new visa, you are not required to carry your old passport with you.
- How Do I Speak to a Live Person at USCIS?
- How Many Citizenships Can You Have?
- How Do I Know Which USCIS Service Center?
- How Do I Know If USCIS Received My Application?
- What “Country of Residence” and How to Know Yours When on a Visa
- How to Check Dropbox Eligibility with the App
The processing time varies, but you should expect to wait at least 8 to 10 weeks. You will be informed of all the processing stages by the Consulate via email. You can also make inquiries using your reference number. After your OCI card is issued, you can visit India and get all its benefits. Above all, you will finally be home, where you have always belonged.
Need a Loan? Get One in 3 Simple Steps
If you are considering applying for a personal loan, just follow these 3 simple steps.
Apply online for the loan amount you need. Submit the required documentation and provide your best possible application. Stronger applications get better loan offers.
If your application meets the eligibility criteria, the lender will contact you with regard to your application. Provide any additional information if required. Soon you’ll have your loan offer. Some lenders send a promissory note with your loan offer. Sign and return that note if you wish to accept the loan offer.
The loan then gets disbursed into your U.S. bank account within a reasonable number of days (some lenders will be as quick as 2-3 business days). Now you need to set up your repayment method. You can choose an autopay method online to help you pay on time every month.
Stilt provides loans to international students and working professionals in the U.S. (F-1, OPT, H-1B, O-1, L-1, TN visa holders) at rates lower than any other lender. Stilt is committed to helping immigrants build a better financial future.
We take a holistic underwriting approach to determine your interest rates and make sure you get the lowest rate possible.
Learn what others are saying about us on Google, Yelp, and Facebook or visit us at https://www.stilt.com. If you have any questions, send us an email at [email protected]