- Agriculture & Commodities Industry Practice
- Commercial Manufacturing & Production Industry Group
- Energy Practice Group
- Fashion Industry
- Information Technology
- Logistics & Warehousing Practice
- Retail Practice
- Startup & Emerging Business
- Mobile Application & Social Media
- India Practice Group
- Investors and Entrepreneurs
- Consulting & Service Oriented Businesses
- Visa Franchise Practice
- Medical Professionals
- Emigrate to & from Canada
- Moving from Germany to US
- Grenada Citizenship by investment
- Italian Citizenship & Residency
- Portuguese Residency By Investment
- Turkish Citizenship
- Moving from United Kingdom to US
- Immigration to the United Kingdom
- Moving from Australia to US
- Moving from Singapore to US
- Moving from Taiwan to US
- Moving from Philippines to US
- Moving from Vietnam to US
What is an NRI?
A Non-Resident Indian (NRI) is a person who is a citizen of India, or is a person with Indian origins, but does not live in India anymore, i.e. is not a resident of India. The method to determine whether a person is a NRI is by following section 6 of the Income Tax Act 1961: a person whose primary residence is outside of India can be considered to be a resident of India if they fulfil any of these conditions:
- If they are in India for a period of 182 days or more in the previous year (120 days if your taxable income is over Rs. 15 lakhs); or
- If they are in India for a period of 60 days or more in the previous year, and a period of 182 days or more in the four years preceding the previous year; or
- If a person with an earning total income in excess of Rs. 15 lakhs (other than from foreign sources) is not liable to pay tax in any country.
How do Indian Tax Laws Impact NRIs
It is important to remember that while one year your status might be that of a NRI, it is quite possible that the next year you might fit into one of the above categories and you can be classified as a Resident. As a resident, your global income, meaning income earned both inside and outside of India, is taxable, whereas as a Non-Resident Indian, only income earned or accrued in India is taxable - that means even dividends given out by Indian companies can be taxable. Taxes can also be levied as a NRI on income such as gains from transfer of assets, salary earned by services provided in India, rent earned on properties in India, and interests on bank savings accounts and returns on fixed deposits.
What is Overseas Citizen of India (OCI) Status?
Overseas Citizen of India is a permanent residency status that allows people of Indian origin and their families to be able to work and live in India freely. Despite the name, OCI status does not automatically give citizenship - it was rather an effective tool to expand the confines of dual citizenship for Indian citizens.
NRIs and routes to United States
As a NRI, you have a plethora of options to choose from if you want to travel, work and live in the United States. Each option has several advantages and disadvantages, and Davies & Associates can help you guide and pick which route would be a perfect fit for you in consideration with your circumstances and your wishes.
EB-5 Visa and Non-Resident Indians
The EB-5 programme is an immigrant visa established in the 1990 that helps foreign nationals and their families to establish themselves in the US and obtain permanent residency through substantial, job-creating investment. The EB-5 program operates a quota system of around 700 visas per country per years. Your quota is determined by your country of birth, not citizenship – so if you were born outside India, you will not be counted under India’s quota. This is helpful because India has high demand and is usually close to using up its quota each year. The EB-5 visa offers permanent US residency, which can later transition to citizenship.
The E2 Treaty Investor visa is a good option for investors who wish to manage and develop the business, especially since it allows entry to employees with essential skills, management, and other executives. The E2 visa can be extended indefinitely, as long as the business is still running in the U.S., and has no caps on it like the H1B visa, which makes it a preferable option to some; however, employees may consider to apply for the L-1 visa instead, since it is said to be easier to apply for a Green Card in the future. Indians are not directly eligible for the E-2 Visa and need to first obtain citizenship of an E-2 Treaty country. This has often proved popular for NRIs, by obtaining citizenship by investment of Grenada in the Caribbean, NRIs are able to establish a citizenship outside of India and become eligible for the E-2 Visa at the same time. Grenada does not have residency requirements so the NRI can continue to live in their country of residence, e.g. Dubai, Singapore, etc.
The L-1 visa is a non-immigrant visa, which can be used by active US employers or those who wish to establish in the US to send experienced and skilled employees from overseas to the US to grow or expand the business. There are two types of this temporary work visa - the L-1A is for executives and managers, and the L-1B visa is suited for high-level employees with specialised knowledge. The L-1 does not offer permanent residency but it is possible to transition to a Green Card and subsequently citizenship.
Grenada Citizenship by Investment for NRIs
One of the newest programmes available to investors, it provides a second citizenship in Grenada provided the investor contributes $150,000 as a donation, or invests from $220,000 in a government approved real estate project and then maintains the property for five years. Other advantages include visa-free travel to 153 countries including China and EU Schengen countries, along with access to the U.S. E2 treaty investor visa. You do not need to visit Grenada to become a citizen, so it does not affect the existing residency of a Non-resident Indian, but provides an alternative to your Indian citizenship. India does not allow dual citizenship. Crucially for Non-Resident Indians, Grenada does not tax on income its citizens earn outside Grenada.
NRIs based in the United Arab Emirates
It might be surprising to find out that nearly 38% of UAE’s population is made up of Indian expats, i.e. almost 3,240,000 people. This can be a result of the Double Taxation Avoidance Agreement between the UAE and India, coupled with the fact that there is virtually no income tax charged in the UAE.
NRIs in Singapore
Similarly, Indians make up about 9% of the Singaporean population, about 348,000 people, and Malay and Tamil are even considered to be part of the official languages of Singapore. Singapore is considered to be especially attractive to expats due to its government policies and political stability, making it a prime location for real estate investment.
NRIs in South Africa
About 17% of the South African population is made up of Indians, nearly 1,000,000 people. South Africa is said to have the largest Indian population outside of India, and though a majority of that seems to be descendants of indentured labourers brought in the early twentieth century, increasing political alliances between India and South Africa and the widespread of Indian and Bollywood culture have also been incentives for NRIs to live there.
NRIs in Canada
Recent years have shown an astonishing number of NRIs moving to Canada; this is speculated to be due a result of the immigration policies of the Trump administration in the U.S., and the resulting difficulties to obtain a green card. There are more than 90,000 Indians identifying as permanent residents in Canada. Moreover, many tech companies, both American and Indian, have also opened affiliate offices in Canada, in addition to the Canadian government streamlining the work permit process for tech workers, making it a very attractive option.
Contact Davies & Associates Offices in India
Check all of our locations around the world.
New Delhi Office
C-41, L.G.F. Jungpura Extension New Delhi, India 110014
Map and Driving Directions
Regus UB City, Level 15 Concorde Tower, UB City, 1 Vittal Mallya Road, Bangalore, India 560 001
Map and Driving Directions
I had a great experience with Davies & Associates. They are very thorough in the approach and their have experts in this field who know the domain very well.I would certainly be leaning onto them for any future needs as well.
Thanks to them for handling my E2 visa very professionally. I had a study visa from F1 and changed it to E2. I encountered many problems during the application process. Verdie and Etta were very patient in helping me and it took a long time. I highly recommend this place.
Outstanding Immigration Attorney: Highly Recommended! Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ (5/5) I had the pleasure of working with Verdie Atienza and his team at Davies & Associates , a top-notch immigration attorney in the United States. Their professionalism, expertise, and dedication throughout the process were exceptional. With in-depth knowledge of immigration law, they provided accurate advice and addressed all my concerns, instilling confidence. Verdie Atienza and his team meticulously reviewed my documentation and maintained excellent communication, keeping me updated regularly. What sets Davies & Associates apart is their unparalleled attention to detail. Communication with Verdie Atienza and his team in USA and Sukanya Raman in India was always prompt and efficient. They promptly returned my calls and emails, providing regular updates on the progress of my case. This level of responsiveness and transparency significantly reduced my stress levels, as I knew I could rely on their support and guidance throughout the entire process. Their personalized approach, ethical conduct, and genuine care for my success made them an outstanding attorney. I highly recommend Davies & Associates for all your immigration needs.
Getting my E2 Visa was a very in-depth process that took just over a year from when I committed to it, but 8 months from when I found a business I wanted to purchase. The only reason I'm giving 4 and not 5 stars is because the timeframe was a lot longer than expected from the initial information. Aside from the timing, Verdie and his team led me through the Visa process, providing all the guidance I needed to be successful, including advising me on the RIGHT type of Visa to suit my goals. Within the process I purchased a business and the greater Davies team included lawyer Rinat who helped me put the deal together. One of the biggest parts was my Business Plan which created from my info by Ana Ortiz, who did an incredible job. The process is certainly tedious and Verdie & Christina were always there to answer my questions, provide suggestions and advice and ensure I had all the documents I needed to support my application. I appreciated their patience with my questions and their advice and in the end, the application was so thorough the interview process was quick and easy. I highly recommend Davies & Associates and look forward to working with them again when it's time to renew my Visa.
We were in a hurry and Verdie and the team were highly responsive and supportive, even when we threw in some curve balls along the way. We had our visas approved without any issues and felt confident and well prepared for document submissions and the interview. I'd certainly recommend this team for an E2 visa process.
Several lawyers told me I would not be able to get a TN visa. Two weeks after contacting Davies & Associates I was working in New York, visa in hand.Individual seeking 'Impossible' TN Visa
D&A was very detail-oriented and was very thorough in what they did” L1 Visa Client. There was a lot of work on my case and worked on it 24/7 and was very patient answering all my questions.E2 Visa Client
My case felt complex but D&A managed the whole process carefully and helped me move seamlessly from one stage to the next.E2 + CBI Client
D&A was my guiding light through the entire EB5 Process.EB5 Visa Client
I would definitely be a big advocate for the rest of my life for anyone wanting to explore the Grenada Citizenship by Investment Programme leading to the E2 Visa. The most important thing is a good team behind you.. with Davies & Associates you’re in safe hands… you need someone who can give you all the support at the ground level and, again, you are well take care of by D&A. The people are really warm, very helpful and quite openminded when it comes to business… Not to mention as a passport it’s great from a travel perspective…It’s just 4/5 hours from New York.Grenada CBI + E2 Visa Client
The entire process of getting an EB5 visa is handled in a professional way by Mark Davies and his team. EB5 is a wonderful option for anyone considering moving to the United States if you have the means. I was hoping to use the H1B route for my children, but it became unreliable and so I looked to the EB5 Visa instead. It is great for anyone who has the resources. Mark gives you the first meetings himself which gives you great comfort. Both Mark and Sanjay are abundantly available and I even had the pleasure of hosting them at my house.Parent of 2 EB5 Visa Holders
I'm in a process of extending my L1 visa. I submitted a few questions regarding my case and he contacted me back almost immediately both by e-mail and telephone. Unlike other attorneys I met before, he gave me the impression of knowing from the top of his head what kind of visa I have, and what actions had to be taken to extend it. He is very thorough and clear regarding the process and what to expect in terms of timelines and issues that may arise. He is constantly in contact, so you definitely know he's working on your case.L1B Visa Holder
Mark Davies is a joy to work with. His extensive knowledge, speedy response and attentive service took away all my fears of dealing with immigration and visa applications. He is very generous with his time in explaining every step along the way and I have already and will in the future recommend him to anybody who is looking for an immigration lawyer.E2 Visa for Small Professional Business With International Offices
Davies & Associates assisted us with an immigration emergency involving my brother's fiancée who was outside the United States. They assisted us in an highly professional manner, working with the relevant US embassy, US immigration and the governments of two other countries. As a result of their efforts the individual involved is now working in the United States. While their knowledge of the law is exemplary what really distinguishes this firm and attorney Davies from any other firm we have worked with is their dedication to customer service and their unrivaled level of professionalism.Complex Fiancée Visa Need Involving Multiple International Jurisdictions
Several lawyers told me I would not be able to get a TN visa. Two weeks after contacting Davies & Associates I was working in New York, visa in hand. I have recommended this firm to several friends and colleagues, they do an excellent job every time.Individual Seeking 'Impossible' TN Visa
I was qualified as a physician in a foreign country. Being on a J1 visa I was facing having to leave the United States and return to my home country. Davies & Associates secured one of only 30 J1 visa waivers available in my State, allowing me to work for a US hospital and remain in the United States.Doctor Seeking J1 Visa Waiver
I am very satisfied with the services Mark Davies has provided me. He has a very extensive knowledge in immigration laws and has a thorough approach to any case.U Visa Applicant, A Victim of Crime
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