The Cost of Immigrating to the United States
Ines Bellina
4212

The US is insane.

I’ll have lived in Japan for 10 years in June, which theoretically qualifies me to apply for permanent residency. Not sure if I’ll do it because I know the process is complicated and a lot of bureaucracy, but at least I know there’s no way it would cost even a quarter of what you describe.

I came for one year as a student, then switched to a one-year working visa, then got a three-year one, then another three-year one, and I’m currently on a five-year visa.

I’ve never needed an immigration lawyer (I only know one person who uses one, and that’s because she’s a freelancer who self-sponsors which is a more complicated process). Over the past ten years, my various visa renewals, etc. have cost me, *at MOST* $300. Maybe $400 if I’m being really conservative.

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