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Thread: Lost passport while on OPT, please help

  1. #1

    Lost passport while on OPT, please help

    I graduated in Dec 2016, I got my EAD card which started on 3rd march2017, and I also applied for my SSN which is in transit now. I just realized that I lost my passport. I can easily get a replacement passport from Indian Embassy. But I wont be having the visa stamp on it. I'm unemployed currently and will get a job in 15-20 days approximately. My question is will I be required to show my passport in any case? How to get visa stamp on it without going to India, like is there any other country where I can get the stamp? Because of the current situation I don't think going to India and coming back is such a good option. should I just continue living here with my replacement passport and go for the stamp after I get H1B? I'm tensed. Please guide me the best way possible to legally get the stamp and to get back to USA without any hassle. Any suggestions are appreciated. Please HELP.

  2. #2
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  3. #3
    Hi Raghu,

    I had lost my passport too and went through the rough process of getting a new one last year. I was about to start a new job and unfortunately for me, I lost it before I applied for my SSN and other documents that are required while taking up a new job adding on to my hassles.

    Here is what I can tell you from my experience-
    Since you already have applied for your OPT and SSN there is no impediment for you to take up a new job and start working. It is advisable to apply and get your passport from the Indian Embassy in the US as soon as you can. You can do it by post or in person. For stamping the best (n kind of only) option is to go to India but I would strongly recommend you to not do it now for two reasons; the current situation is unpredictable making the stamping affair more risky, going to India and coming back on an inactive status that is after graduation and before joining a new job can be a tricky affair depending on a lot of things (I would need more info to see where you stand there). Your lost visa is still valid and active and will not create any issues till you don't go out of the country ( I assming you have a copy of the lost visa). You can get it stamped in Canada too but thats a more cumbersome process as they take approx 3 weeks sometimes to return your passport after stamping and that means you cannot re-enter the US and are stuck in Canada till then. If you are applying for H1 this year then it makes more sense to wait and then go for H1 stamping (if you get picked) after October. In case you are not applying for H1 this year you may wait for a 2-3 months to have enough proof of an active job and then go for F1 stamping.

    Hope that helps. Let me know if you have more questions.

  4. #4
    Hi Raghu,

    Even I was in the same situation. I lost my passport in Jan 17 and got new one issued in Feb. currently I am in OPT and applying for H1B , my suggestion would be to wait for h1b and decide on the further steps. It's not advisable to go to India while u applied for H1B because you are trying to change the status from F1 to H1B. Even I was very confused and consulted my lawyer and DSO. The response from them is same, they told me not to travel unless it's an emergency.

    If you want to travel and get your visa stamped, please keep in mind that the process will be same as the first time u applied for visa. If you are lucky u might get your visa stamped only after the drop box and not by an interview. In few rare cases if the visa officer needs to further investigate your case he/she may apply for administrative processing which might take a minimum of 2 to 3 weeks . Visa is only needed if you travel out side US for legal presence I 94 is enough. For job my employer did not ask for visa , they just asked for OPT card and some form of ID state if or driving license.

    So to conclude..

    1. File a police complaint
    2 gather documents for new passport and get it
    3 speak with your DSO and any immigration lawyer

    If you still want to go to India or any other country for visa stamping get your degree certificate, opt card , updated I 20 with travel signature, all I 20 from start , transcripts, job offer letter , any letter from employer about your job , recent pay stub, I 94, copy of old visa , copy of old passport and any applicable letter form university e.g continuous enrollment, maintain F1 status if still enrolled in univ.

  5. #5
    Your message was posted anonymously on our Facebook wall at 19th March - Please review comments from other users

  6. #6
    In case of an employment u need to submit a copy of your passport (scanned copy). Check with your DSO as well

  7. #7
    You should go back to India for stamping after you get a job as the visa is required for some other purposes too. If you find going to India risky, the same risk exists even in any other country for stamping, perhaps more! Please remember to register a police report. Do not forget that the visa process will be exactly same as the first visa and it's no guaranteed that you will be granted the visa.

  8. #8
    The best thing get new passport and h1 approved go for stamping

  9. #9
    Go to India after your h1b approval for stamping. But you should get a passport soon as you will need copy of entire passport when you apply for H1b. And if the passport is already lost it is unwise to give copy of that lost passport. You should apply for a new one in tatkal services.

  10. #10

    I recently lost my passport. I got my ead(starts on july 1' 2017) and also have an offer letter. I have not yet applied for a new passport. Is it advisable for me to get my visa stamped as soon as I get my passport? Would they still consider me a student and issue an F1 Visa? What is my best option?
    Did any of you go for a stamping? Could you give me some details on that.

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