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Indian immigrants: Pathways to naturalization

Statistics show that there were a total of 2.4 million Indian immigrants living in the United States in 2015. Among these immigrants, 45 percent had become naturalized United States citizens. This compares to the figure for foreign-born immigrants, among which 48 percent were naturalized at that time.

Compared to other foreign-born residents of the United States, Indian immigrants have a higher probability of having arrived in the United States more recently. Sixteen percent of immigrants have come to the United States after 2009, whereas 31 percent of Indian immigrants have arrived post-2009. India comes in as the third-largest source of immigrants for the United States, after China and Mexico.

Not all immigrants from India in the United States have appropriate documentation to legally be in the country. In fact, approximately 267,000 Indians were unauthorized to be here between 2010 and 2014. This makes up approximately 3 percent of all the 11 million unauthorized foreign nationals residing in the United States according to the most recent estimations.

On the plus side, an estimated 15,000 Indian youths were eligible to benefit from the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. Nevertheless, as of March 2017, only 3,741 had actually applied to the program and only 3,182 had received approval -- meaning that thousands could benefit from this program, which they have yet to take advantage of.

If you're living in the United States and would like to live here permanently, various pathways toward receiving a green card or citizenship could be available. If you're ready to take the first step toward living permanently in this county, be sure to learn as much as you can about your legal rights and options.

Source: Migration Policy Institute, "Indian Immigrants in the United States," Jie Zong and Jeanne Batalov, accessed Feb. 08, 2018

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