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H-1B: As immigration furor roils Silicon Valley, Canada smooths way for techies (mercurynews.com)
303 points by muzz 9 days ago | hide | past | web | favorite | 357 comments





I just moved out of US and in process of moving to Canada. Just for background: Worked in leadership roles for startups and Fortune 15 companies, sold a company to Dropbox, advise/invest in bunch of startups.

My life's goal is contribute to curing/diagnosing Cancer using technology. Everything I did in the past 14 years has been towards meeting that goal. I figured, I would need knowledge, network, and financial stability. I moved to US in 2011 and over 14 years I achieved all of these. However, after moving to US I realized that I lost the most critical piece: ability to work on this goal without significant restrictions.

Visas like H1/O1 have lot of restrictions on what you can work. Recently it has become extremely difficult for early stage startups to get H1, especially if the applicant owns significant equity.

Once you get invested and comfortable in a place, you stay put. I worked really hard to break this ceiling. I tried for EB-1 Green Card twice and got rejected both times. You need 3 out of 10 criteria for Green Card. Over 2 petitions and an appeal - separate USCIS officials gave me 4 criteria. But none of them gave me 3, and their responses were very hostile.

I had to deal with H1/O1 petition every year while I pursued my entrepreneurship goals. However, I am finally done with this and can't do it anymore. I think I also have PTSD because of my experience dealing with immigration. I could not work to my potential, missed family events because I couldn't travel and stayed in limbo for too long.

However, finally I have moved out of US. I want to pursue my goal to attack Cancer without any employment restrictions. At this point, Canada seems like the best place for this and that is where I am moving.

I am originally from India, and as mentioned in a few other posts, I do not want to live there because of quality of life challenges.

I will write more detailed posts sometime next year detailing my experience. However in summary my advise is:

If you are from India, come to US only if you internalize that you are in a temporary situation with a set goal: make more money/learn/build network. Don't get too invested, because you might need to leave at short notice. If you are an entrepreneur, you would be spending the best years of your life, without being able to perform to your potential due to immigration related bureaucracy. India, currently, has great opportunities for Entrepreneurs.

I was lucky to be able to found a company on H1, sell it and work at a few great companies. Still it wasn't enough to make it here.


> My life's goal is contribute to curing/diagnosing Cancer using technology. Everything I did in the past 14 years has been towards meeting that goal. I figured, I would need knowledge, network, and financial stability [...]

As someone who's fresh into the technology industry after grad school, it would be great to get your perspective regarding planning and executing on a long-term vision in such a manner. I'm sure a lot of other people would too. Replying here since I couldn't find any contact details on your HN profile--in case you would like questions to initiate thought on the topic, I'd love to participate in a conversation. Looking forward to hearing from you either ways!


Updated the email on my profile.

My approach is usually as follows:

1. Identify a real person in whose position I would want to be 10 years from now.

2. Figure out the path from that person to my current situation. Usually this involves figuring out filling missing gaps along multiple dimensions: e.g. knowledge, connections, financial situation.

3. Create 5 year and 2 year checkpoints/goals on each of the dimensions.

4. Break 2 year plan into monthly goals.

5. Execute, learn, critically analyze every quarter. Brutally prioritize.

6. If there is a learning which requires major change in plan, start again from step 1.

I think the most important part was step 1. Rest is execution. It is also important to align your goal with something that you are passionate about. You would need passion to drive you towards your goal.

I put some of the thoughts on company building at https://anandprakash.net/ during sleepless nights with our baby. I will put more thoughts, especially around immigration sometime next year.


I'm so happy for you that you are able to do this transition.

I used to envy EB1s a lot (I'm from India, lived here in US for a good amount of time), then got to know what a hassle it is to go through the process, even after an I-140 is approved, until they get a GC. With current processing delays for the associated renewals (adjustment of status and h1b)often, the EB1 applicant (and the family) cannot travel out of the US for most of the year. Being immigrants, this puts a lot of stress on you and your family.

Since you were good for EB1, and are in research field, I hope there's enough research funding/activity in Canada in the field you specialize in. I know a few post docs who are too tired to go through the EB1 process in the US, while they have no funding for their research in Canada!


> I tried for EB-1 Green Card twice and got rejected both times. You need 3 out of 10 criteria for Green Card. Over 2 petitions and an appeal - separate USCIS officials gave me 4 criteria. But none of them gave me 3, and their responses were very hostile.

I don't really understand. Do you mean to say that the USCIS officer wanted you to meet 4 criteria while the rules specify 3? Did you take them to court over it?

If you already were on O-1 visa, it should've been easy to qualify for EB-1 GC. The criteria is pretty similar for both. Did you try a different law firm? What criteria specifically did you not meet?


I had an O-1 visa. Still my EB-1 was rejected - twice!

First time then gave me 2 criteria (contribution to field of work and contribution to companies). On Appeal, AAO gave me another criteria (high compensation) and took away 1 already given (contribution to field of work).

Second time, my application was much stronger - but they gave me just one criteria (press).

I didn't take them to court over it. Didn't want to deal with that.

I will try a different firm next time.


I understand it like so: (not a native speaker myself)

individually, they both give 2 criteria. Together, they would give 4. (So, say, the 1st one gives criteria #1 and #2, and the second #3 and #4)


Just wanted to thank you for pursuing such a noble cause. We need more people like you putting their time, energy, resources, and brains towards solving real hard problems in society, such as access to affordable (mental) healthcare, affordable housing, climate change, and ethical ML/AI systems.

Keep up the good fight friend, you'll be an asset to any country lucky enough to call you their citizen.


Thanks, for the wishes :)

Need to fix the final missing piece: Find a place to call home. Once that is done, will work for the next 20 years attacking Cancer!


I can attest to this. I have three friends who are preparing to migrate to Canada or Australia. Mind you, these are not the typical H1B workers from Infosys. These are smart legitimate people with a masters degree who work at top tech companies. They have no hopes to get a permanent residency in US because of long queues. Renewing H1B is a big hassle. Surely its a big change to pick up your life up and move to a different country but its probably for the good considering the current administration's anti-immigrant stand and seemingly socially regressive and anti-science policies. This issue has been coming to a head for a while now. My friends at Apple and Microsoft tell me that the immigration woes are picking up heat internally and related questions are making an appearance at internal Q/A with senior management (Tim Cook) so it remains to be seen if tech companies would be able influence any policies.

For first time ever I think - my Employer (again not an outsourcing firm) has started holding immigration Towh hall meetings for all employees on H1Bs. Its like getting called to principal office and you don't know why.

The fear, uncertainty and doubt is very real among all immigrants afaict.


> preparing to migrate to Canada or Australia.

I know lot of ppl who have been dreaming of this for years but money and opportunity here in US is too good to pass up. 99% of ppl on H1B are not starting companies.

Most ppl just don't have the appetite to slash their income by half. "preparing" doesn't count as a example.


The half-of-salary thing is a bit rich. Tech people unknowingly push up their second or third sigma downside in America and cost of living is hard to compare. In America you're more likely to get violently harmed. More likely to become truly poor. More likely to develop life-long medical conditions. Don't have actuarially balanced government pension (SS accounting is off book, CPP is fully funded). Higher net-debt-to-GDP. Broken political system. It's a pretty long list of nice-to-haves up here.

If you're in the class of programmer than can half your salary by moving to Canada you're still going to be earning at the very least $120k in Toronto, and that's all that shitty. I continue to choose to live in a common wealth (in the old sense of the term) for a reason.


I really like Toronto, but cost of living is high (one of the largest housing bubbles in the world, high taxes), salaries are low and jobs (not only in tech) are scarce. In the States you won't find engineers, doctors, accountants working in the supermarkets/starbucks. Go to any store in Richmond Hill/North York and you will see plenty. There is an ugly truth that people don't like to discuss much, Canada accepts too many professional immigrants relative to the number of available jobs. The proportion of underemployed immigrants is astounding (people who either have to work in unrelated fields or a few levels below their skills). Most of what you mentioned is true, but it's also true that in the States it's much easier to make a living or have a fulfilling career for a professional.

It's not because Canada is accepting a lot of professionals relative to the lesser number of jobs.

Canada's institutions do not accept the immigrant professional's academic credentials, training or their work experience.

A general nurse with 15 years of work experience from India cannot practice the same job duties in Canada due to this restrictions. So they resort to other jobs like home care.

A lot of immigrant nurses in Québec who are from India and Philippines are working in factories now because Québec nurse's association do not recognize their nursing degrees.

The doctors who immigrate drive taxis in Toronto because their credentials are not recognized.

Unlike in the US, for some reason Canadian regulatory bodies have a hard time recognizing credentials of immigrant professionals there by forcing them to take up another job.

A colleague tells me there is this Canadian doctor's and nurses lobby which "protects" the Canadian professional order from immigrant professionals who have come to take up their jobs.

Right now, only IT professionals are accepted as they are. Every other professionals immigrating to Canada should be prepared to re certify their professions or take up additional courses.


Martin you can rent a room in Toronto for $850 with a single housemate. It's no where near that in the valley. What other major costs are there? Healthcare is covered. Dental is <$1k / year. Vision is <$1k / year. Food is way cheaper than SF. Less on accountant fees, less on legal fees, less on anything I can think of, really.

I really don't understand where people get the idea that housing is expensive in Toronto. You can rent a room in a rental home in scarborough or etobicoke for as low as a few hundred dollars. You'd share a house with a dozen people sure, but you typically get a private room at least. The cheapest I've been able to find in SF was $600 for sharing a _room_ with half a dozen people.

> a few hundred dollars

Ya, I'm not buying this. Maybe 12 students sharing a 4/5 bedroom house that is a mid-distance walk from bus transit that requires you to transfer to a another bus/subway to get you where you're going.

If you're a software dev and properly value your time, this type of housing is a no-go.


Sure, you can always pay more once you are out of school and can afford something nicer. I used to share a 3 bed apt with two guys near union station, paid $400. Then moved to bachelor at christie, paid $750. Eventually got a detached in a nice neighbourhood w/ a 2k/mo mortgage. Housing was affordable every step of the way.

The point is that it's feasible for a 3rd world person to save up, move to Toronto, and still have a private living space while working towards home ownership, whereas SF struggles pretty hard with homelessness of even full-fledged american citizens.


3 bed apt near Union Station for $1200/month? Maybe 10+ years ago.

Even over the past 2 years, rent prices have increased aggressively.

Nowadays, you're lucky to spend just north of $2000/month for a 2 bedroom.


> 3 bed apt near Union Station for $1200/month? Maybe 10+ years ago.

It was 10+ years ago, sure, but also I had the smallest room (actually a den) so I paid the least. The total rent was 1500 IIRC for what was technically a 2bed+den. I just googled and rent for the same type of apt in that building is going for around $2000 as you said. So if I were to have the same rent splitting arrangement today, I'd probably be paying around $600, maybe $700 for a better room. Which, remember, is around the same as the 3-bunk-bed-room deal-of-the-century in SF.

Also consider my salary back then was CAD 37k. Nowadays a person w/ 1-2 yrs angular experience can land a CAD 100k job fairly easily. My wife sees new grads getting 75k at CGI fresh out of school. The real estate bubble popped too, so it's definitely a buyers market now for those who were eyeing home ownership.


« Renting a room » is not considered decent living for a lot of people.

Are we comparing apples to apples? You can also find a room on peninsula for 1200-1500 with one housemate. A 2 bedroom apartment in Toronto in a neighborhood similar to where I live here in SV is going to be 2800/3000 CAD, I am paying 3K USD now. Car insurance $70 per month for 2 cars here, I used to pay $380 per month in Canada. My PGE bill is $50-70, in Toronto hydro/gas are going to be at least twice that. My brother paid $400 a month in heating costs last winter (4 year old insulated house). How about $10 beers, $30 entrees in restaurants (not fancy, just regular ones), more expensive gas, activities for kids. It all adds up. And you're missing the point, it's not that prices are high in absolute terms, but relative to salaries (which are very low). i'd be happy to come back to be close to my family, but I can't afford to take a 50%+ pay cut.

Dude I just got into a new place at Dovercourt and Dundas. I'm on the second floor of desirable house paying $850 CAD ($650 USD).

Yes you can spend $3k CAD on a shiny new two-bedroom midrise condo if you want to, but that's the exception. Most people live in places that cost between $600 to $1200 per person. Max $2k ($1.5k USD) if you live alone.

Nobody I know is paying $400 in heating. That's northern Ontario electric baseboard heating rates. My total electricity bill for all of 2016 was $400.

Beer is not $10. It is $7. Entrees are $14 ($11 USD), not $30.

You're missing my point. I was making $200k+ at 27 in 2012. You can make money here. It's not SV high, true, but it is high enough. There are other things that matter than raw salary.


OK, so 2K for a single person if living along. I guess for a family of 3, you'd need to up that budget by at least 500. My brother is a real estate agent who does a lot of rentals downtown and midtown. He says you'd need to budget around 4.20CAD per sq.ft. It can go higher depending on the layout and views. Rents have risen significantly in the last couple of years. We can back and forth about beer/food costs, I'd lived in Toronto for 8 years (North York - 3 years, Downtown - St.George/Bloor - 4 years and 1 year on Eglington/Younge so I know what I talking about). Can you name 3 companies in Toronto that pay 200K+ in real money (salary, bonus, stock that you can actually sell)? My friends are telling me 110-115K is a VERY decent salary, maybe they are just working for wrong companies.

> You're missing my point. I was making $200k+ at 27 in 2012.

In Toronto? I hope you don't mind my asking: doing what?


Sorry for the delay, I was Chief Data Scientist at a really hot startup.

All of the problems that you mention pretty easily solved by having money. And in the US, programmers are much more capable of getting that money in the first place.

For example, the chance of getting violently harmed, is solved by living in a good neighborhood.

The problem of healthcare is solved by paying for good health insurance. The issue of retirement is solved by putting lots of your money into a retirement account.

Life really is quite amazing for people in the upper 10%, in america. And programmers easily fall into that category.


> In America you're more likely to get violently harmed

As far as I can tell this is not really true. There are small areas in the US with extreme violence and it skews the overall statistics.

> More likely to become truly poor

Again I’m not sure this is true for a programmer - every year I save 2-3 years worth of living costs.

> earning at the very least $120k in Toronto

What is the cost of a decent 3-4 bedroom house in Toronto fairly close to work?

If it’s anything like Vancouver then $120k is not enough.


>In America you're more likely to get violently harmed. More likely to become truly poor.

all these only apply to lower income ppl in US not to ppl on h1b, they can simply move back to higher middle class in India if things go wrong.


I can't tell if this comment is ironic or not. But I'll bite anyway.

The choice is between H1B in Canada vs H1B in US. Presumably permanent residency is the plan, so "simply moving back to India" isn't the plan if things go wrong 5 years later.


It's hard to ignore the trolls. The phrase "simply move back" is always a clear flag that someone has no idea what they're talking about.

Ok man. whatever. I know tons of ppl who moved back, to start their own business, to take care of aging parents, to retire, for their kids schooling. It is really a viable option if you become "truly poor" in USA.

Sure, but its also a big sacrifice that is a larger sacrifice than, say, moving to another state. Sure, people do it, but it's expensive, time consuming, disruptive, and stressful. And there are additional financial implications such as currency exchange and repaying debts (if you care about your old credit rating) in a different currency, along with transmitting money across borders. Not everyone can just cash out debts.

So yeah, it's possible, but it is no walk in the park.


You can move back to India even if you take up US/Canadian citizenship on your PIO card.

You mean if a H-1B immigrant's kid gets shot fatally in the next school shooting or a spouse is killed in a bar, "simply move back to India"? or do bullets fly only towards lower income people?

>"Mind you, these are not the typical H1B workers from Infosys. These are smart legitimate people..."

That's a pretty broad brush you're smearing with there, amigo.


I wish so badly I could trade places, as a conservative man stuck in a 'progressive' country with lower wages. Give me a great salary and Blumpffss 'regressive' US any day.

I mean...why can't you?

I'm not the person you replied to but keep in mind that a lot of people talk about wanting to live in another country but never get around to actually doing anything about it.

It doesn't matter what country you are currently in there will be people who want to live somewhere else. Some will get it done but most won't take any steps towards making it happen.


The same reason not every "I'm totally moving to canada/australia/new zealand/europe" liberal in the US can do so. Immigration laws.

Unfortunately for you, your conservative peers in the US don't want foreigners like you to immigrate.

I don't know why you're being downvoted. It's totally on point. And there's a subtle point too; conservatism reduces opportunity and there's not much evidence that American conservative values have anything to do with good American wages. In fact, on a state by state basis, the opposite is true.

I think one angle the parent may have intended is that immigration increases labour supply and thus depresses wages. This argument ignores the fact that immigration generally grows an economy and in many countries it's a critical driver. This goes doubly for highly skilled immigration - particularly in the tech industry. I've worked with extremely talented folks who'd come to the US from all over the world, raising the bar at the world's top tech companies. Anyone who's worked in these companies will tell you that it's the quality bar that's the biggest constraint on hiring. SV is a concentrator of technical talent - one of the reasons the ecosystem works so well (the other is access to capital).

Beyond that, I'd find it surprising that progressive policy should depress wages - conservative economic stance typically weighs in favour of Capital.

The ultimate irony of the parent post is that the values he strongly identifies with are those that thwart his dearest wish. Emblematic of the human condition?


I'm not even sure immigration laws have much to do with it. I would hazard a guess that the vast majority of people never get as far as finding out what the other country's immigration laws are.

I imagine people are vaguely aware of the degree of difficulty for different countries, but your point stands that most people with a reasonable standard of living prefer to avoid the upheaval of emigrating.

Why don’t they get an E2 visa which is designed for immigration for those with high skills and advanced degrees?

An H visa is a temporary, non-immigrant visa and was never intended as a path to a green card. Frustration around long queues for green cards for H visas doesn’t make any sense because that is, by its very definition, a non-immigrant visa.

Expecting permanent residency from a non-immigrant visa is no different than expecting a French tourist visa to lead to residency.


E2 visas are limited to few, mostly European countries. The people referred to in the article are from India. Also, China is backlogged in the green card queue so it's useless for them too. I don't think E2 is an immigrant visa either, anyway E2 is an investor visa, rather than founders.

>An H visa is a temporary, non-immigrant visa and was never intended as a path to a green card. Frustration around long queues for green cards for H visas doesn’t make any sense because that is, by its very definition, a non-immigrant visa.

It does make sense, because currently the quota is country based. So if you're from a small country, say Cambodia, and have an advanced degee, you can get on a H1B and get a green card in about 7 months, whether 'intended' or not.


H1b is a dual intent visa. Which means a person coming to theUS on a H1b visa can apply for green card.

If you think it makes sense for a person born in India to wait for 150 years while paying taxes etc, and a person born in a different country waits for 7 months, we’ll, it’s clear what your POV is.


E2 Treaty Investors visa is nonimmigrant and requires substantial capital. Source: https://www.uscis.gov/working-united-states/temporary-worker...

So not sure what your comment implies.


The EB-2 (if that's what you were referring to) is one of the "exceptional ability" visas. The requirements are quite difficult to meet for a regular professional software engineer.

Disclaimer: I'm not a lawyer.

E2 visa is employment-based, which means the applicant needs to be employed by the time they applies (usually through OPT or H1B).

So it's not an "either-or" situation.


Sorry, I meant EB-2 insteand of E2.

> was never intended as a path to a green card

Not true. Congress clearly intended this back in 2000 when it passed AC21, and the government has also recognized this through regulation.


Why is this downvoted? Was anything in or untrue? H visas are temporary, non-immigrant visas.

https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/us-visas/employme...


It's downvoted because you, like your profile says, are "opinionated, inconsistent, irrelevant, irreverent and incontrovertible", and regardless of the number of times you are told that you are wrong and that H1Bs are dual-intent visas, keep parroting the same trash in every immigration related thread. Please quit proliferating nonsense untruths.

And here, for future reference, because short of a citation of the law, and probably even then, you won't quit spreading junk knowledge:

Better reference: https://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/text/8/1184

b) Presumption of status; written waiver Every alien (other than a nonimmigrant described in subparagraph (L) or (V) of section 1101(a)(15) of this title, and other than a nonimmigrant described in any provision of section 1101(a)(15)(H)(i) of this title except subclause (b1) of such section) shall be presumed to be an immigrant until he establishes to the satisfaction of the consular officer, at the time of application for a visa, and the immigration officers, at the time of application for admission, that he is entitled to a nonimmigrant status under section 1101(a)(15) of this title.


Without getting in the history of the parent poster, he's not wrong. H1B is a temporary (non-immigrant) visa which allows dual intent. Yes, most people on dual intent visas eventually petition for a green card but I think it's unfair to qualify his post as "junk knowledge". Same thing with L-1A and O-1.

Source : https://www.uscis.gov/working-united-states/temporary-nonimm...


It is junk knowledge to claim that something was never intended as a path to a green card.

Congress clearly intended this it back in 2000, when it passed Public Law 106-313 ("American Competitiveness in the 21st Century Act"), which allowed H-1B extensions beyond 6 years for those who are waiting for green cards. If Congress didn't think the H-1B visa should be a path to a green card, why would they pass that bill?

Also the government has recognized it many times through regulation. For example, look at the number of times this regulation talks about a "path": https://www.federalregister.gov/documents/2016/11/18/2016-27...


This is false. H1B holders pay into Social Security and Medicare, but are not allowed access to SS and Medicare benefits, precisely because it's a dual intent visa with the intention of immigration.

I'm in my 30's, spent > 1/3rd of my life in the US. Got a Masters degree before Obama was elected. Slogged enough, made enough personal sacrifices to achieve what I have.

An employer who hired me based on a promise of EB greencard. Employer screwed me at last moment by giving a lame excuse as to why the GC process stalled.

In the mean time, had saved up enough to put 20% down on a 500K+ home in N.E. US. Had almost paid the booking fee. But wife's employer started giving the deaf ear treatment when following up on the GC.

Now, we are all set to move to Canada in a month or two. Once we find jobs for our respective fields (both are in good, in-demand tech jobs) we'll say good bye to years of bonded labor and living in uncertainty.

So we will finally buy a house in a country which we can call home, without ever thinking of being 'hopeless 3rd class residents of a country with no hopes of citizenship'.

(I hope the Americans who can vote, will work towards fixing this system)


I'm in a similar spot, late 20s, spent the better part of a decade in the US. I'm back for a couple more years on a TN but recently I went from wanting a green card to wanting to go back home to Canada. The plan right now, subject to change, is to do one more tour of duty here, save up, network, invest, then pack it on up and start a company when I get back. In the process of buying property in Canada.

I am an american, and I'm sick about what is happening. We are going to see a real brain drain. In the top end tech market at least, there's a massive shortage of people who can do bespoke software. Seattle has endless job opportunities.

Toronto/Vancouver will become extremely attractive for those wanting to come up with startups, even for VCs to invest due to massive influx of high skilled immigrants, with valuable knowledge from US work experience.

In Canada you’ll likely have citizenship in 3-4 years. It’s very straight forward.

very true. That's the icing on the cake. After 4 years, no one in the family needs to bother about visa, visa interview, stamping, stamp expiry, renewal of visa and a zillion other things.

Sounds accurate. There is no realistic path to citizenship or even permanent residency in the USA for highly skilled immigrants from India. While the high salaries and quality of life are attractive for someone straight out of college, you quickly realize that this isn't the place to be if you want to buy a house, start a family, or make any other major life decision when you could be asked to pack up and leave tomorrow for any or no reason.

Re: "you quickly realize that this isn't the place to be if you want to buy a house, start a family, or make any other major life decision"

The reason rents are so high in California is because everybody and their dog are trying to do the same thing. There's only so much room in California. That's just the reality.

Too bad there are not incentives to create start-ups in places with relatively depressed economies, like Chicago and the Rust Belt.


That sounds great. Come to USA after college, make a million dollars in a few years, move back home, get married, and build the Indian economy. You don't want a country where every who has the ability will leave.

> That sounds great. Come to USA after college, make a million dollars in a few years, move back home, get married, and build the Indian economy

LOL. Your comment doesn't even pass smell taste. How many people working as developers will make million dollars in few years after paying payroll taxes? Federal, state, social security, medicare on top of paying for housing, car insurance, health insurance, renter/house owner's insurance, trips back to homeland etc etc. Forget about fun and entertainment, or clothes, shoes, phones, computers, internet etc. Even with extreme level of penny pinching, 40% rate of saving is almost unachievable.

Now assuming every single immigrant that comes here after college makes $150 right off the bat, that $60K in bank every year. At that rate, to save million dollars, one would need 16.66 years. That too assuming there are no incidentals that become money pits.

Good luck getting married at almost 40 or getting uprooted and having to adjust to the different work environment or progress in the industry without any contacts. It's not all puppys and rainbows.


> Even with extreme level of penny pinching, 40% rate of saving is almost unachievable.

Hah that’s a wealthy American point of view.

When I first moved to the US I was saving 85% of my after tax income.

Most (non-scam) Indian H1B holders I know are saving 6 figures a year.


I am one of those and almost everyone ( with exception of one or two every class) in my masters programs we're on F1 Visa. Most of my friends work six figure jobs in cities nowhere close to as expensive as Bay area. I know for a fact, nobody has accumulated million dollars in cash. Close to million in worth? Yes if you count real estate with mortgage, but not that kid of cash. Math doesn't add up.

> I know for a fact, nobody has accumulated million dollars in cash.

I agree, a million in a few years would be rare.

In 10 years though? It’s certainly reasonable.


Never said it's impossible. Is it practical though? If you are migrating to a country 8000 miles away, would you live like you lived in the slums of Dharavi? Some will. Most though, would like to live a normal life commensurate with their income.

Maybe for a shut-in. I never had the patience to save like that. One of the advantages of SF Bay is the culture.

The "google truck engineer" story proves otherwise: https://www.businessinsider.com/google-employee-lives-in-tru...

One story doesn't make a pattern.

You never made an argument about requiring one in the first place.

Where there's a will, there's a way.


It doesn't sound great for the individual, though. Standard of life in the US and Canada is higher than in India, and they'll likely want their kids to grow up in better circumstances than they did, if that's possible.

Besides, you're not going to make a million dollars in a few years. New grad salaries take a while to turn into experienced developer salaries, and the money you make from 20-30 is unlikely to last you all the way to retirement, even if you return to India.


Parent's point is that rather than just improving the lives of a few hundred thousand emigrants, it's far more moral to improve the lives of hundreds of millions of Indians and that can't happen if the best and brightest all leave.

Yup. Brain drain is a real problem in India. Keeping talent in the country is a big problem and China is beating us here too.

It also true that we don't have the capability to support large number of talented folks. Thinks are improving for sure. But it will take much more effort to improve the situation rapidly.


Sure, and my counterpoint is that it doesn't make individual sense, so as moral as it may be, few are likely to do it. I'm sympathetic to the idea, I just think these things need to benefit both the individual and the group in order to succeed.

As horrible as it sounds, in this specific respect, the current US administration has been really fantastic for Canada. More and more new grads are choosing to stay in the country and work with local tech companies, and we're experiencing a reverse brain-drain like never before.

From a Canadian viewpoint, the last couple of years of populism has been a bit like discovering your favorite Uncle has a probably lethal opiate addiction.

But, you're going to get to inherit his Corvette.


Canadian here also. I like your analogy. Opiates don't stop at national or socio-economic boundaries.

So a prediction I hope I'm wrong about: We temporarily enjoy driving the bully uncle's Corvette but soon find ourselves chasing the same dragon in it.


Hi, can you please clarify this. I didn't get the context. I am planning to move to Canada and would love to get multiple view points.

Cool, but he's not maintaining the Corvette, he's running it into the ground.

Man, too close to home.

>your favorite Uncle has a probably lethal opiate addiction.

are you talking about the crack smoking mayor?


My wife ruled out a US PhD precisely because of the negative signals about getting a work visa for her or for me. Canada is welcoming her with open arms

It might be worth getting a PhD first in the US and then migrating to Canada!

Tbh, if you have a PhD, it's not too bad on EB1.

Went looking for eb1 as I have a PhD from a red brick Univ.

PhD is not enough according to Wikipedia:

The EB-1 is a preference category for United States employment-based permanent residency. It is intended for "priority workers". Those are foreign nationals who either have "extraordinary abilities", or are "outstanding professors or researchers", and also includes "some executives and managers of foreign companies who are transferred to the US".[1] It allows them to remain permanently in the US.


Sorry for the late reply.

> outstanding professors or researchers

Works if you have published papers referenced by 10 people. I don't have a PhD but I know a couple of people, one really close friend who did this. In most of the cases PhDs do end up with published papers that get referenced by others. It took couple of years for him for the whole process as an Indian.


Things were good for EB1 till 2008. Then, EB1 was abused by the so-called managers of outsourcing companies: every project manager, team lead, etc, got green cards on EB1, by showing how exceptional they were. Immigration caught up with this game by complaints by other applicants. That's why there is a lot of scrutiny.

You're saying the brain drain has reversed and now there are more Americans going to Canada than vice versa?

Source?


I believe he's making two claims:

  1. The magnitude of the Canada -> US migration flow has lowered
  2. The magnitude of the US -> Canada migration flow has raised.
I am unsure if either claim is true, but both claims can be true without the net migration flow switching signs.

Or, they are making the claim that the people who left canada for the US are migrating back to canada

It has been great for European countries too.

Some of the smartest people I know, do not want to come to the US for higher education. Europe and Canada are quickly becoming the more desirable locations.

A few people that I know from FAANG tier companies have already started the Canada PR process.

I am surprised that the Canadian govt. isn't taking an initiative to try and incentivize more companies to start operations in Canada.

I can see companies saving a lot of money on wages, if they move to their offices to Canada.


> "we're experiencing a reverse brain-drain"

Are you Canadian? Is that what you mean by "we". (I'm just trying to understand the comment.)


As an Amazon employee, I really hope this factors in highly in the HQ2 decision.

Toronto isn't perfect and the city sure isn't offering much in terms of tax breaks, but if Amazon wants to hire 50,000 more tech workers then they'd better be doing so in a country that will let those 50,000 people work.


I always believed that Toronto is a serious contender for the same reasons.

> the city sure isn't offering much in terms of tax breaks

Does it matter that much, though? As an insider you probably know better than me, but I assume that the lower cost of employment per head in Toronto would easily offset any kind of tax break.


I tell everyone the same thing: I don't know any specific details more than anyone else. But what I do know is how Amazon operates and makes decisions: via data, not feelings.

My guess is that there are two teams. One has spent the last few years (long before the HQ2 announcement) building an incredible formula that estimates the expected return over the next 25 years for opening HQ2 in a given city, given these 100+ variables. The second team is collecting those 100+ variables for each city, maybe making analyses on cities to make better estimates on what those numbers look like.

The decision will then boil down to the city with the highest number popping out of the formula.

That's what I would expect from Amazon at least. I have no actual knowledge of what the process really is. Then again, after the Fire Phone fiasco it's clear not all of Amazon's decisions are made this way.


> As an Amazon employee, I really hope this factors in highly in the HQ2 decision.

Seems like a natural hedge against anti-tech, anti-modern US establishment.


Most likely candidate for HQ2 is DC. Bezo just built a mansion there and he needs political cover from both sides of the aisle. His problems are mostly political now and he's a Libertarian with a capital L. Canada is too socialist and taxes are too high.

Canada's aggressively merit based immigration policy has clear advantages in terms of allowing talent in. That said Canadian tech firms still pay way too little.

Indeed, the reason I don't consider moving to Canada is that the areas where I'd like to live are too expensive and salaries too low for the high cost of living, mostly housing (I already can't purchase a house where I live but at least I can hope to, I'd be priced out even worse in Canada).

Toronto and Vancouver housing prices aren't that much lower than the Bay area. However, it does look like the trend is downward in those two cities at the moment.

Some might draw a connection between Canada's open doors policy for skilled immigrants, and the low salaries paid.

I don't think it's the primary reason.

The Canadian tech sector doesn't make nearly as much money as their US counterpart does. The country has very few dedicated software companies, and none the caliber of the FAAMGs. For comparison, the largest software company in Canada by revenue earns $1.7B, Google is in the neighborhood of $120B a year.

Google/Microsoft/Facebook/Apple/etc are each individually orders of magnitude larger than the entire Canadian software industry combined. Chances are, that most metro areas in the US have a technology company larger than the biggest Canadian tech companies.

If Canada went from having a billion dollar tech sector to having a trillion dollar one, then salaries for engineers would explode.


> Google/Microsoft/Facebook/Apple/etc are each individually orders of magnitude larger than the entire Canadian software industry combined

We just need one of those companies to get fed up and move their HQ north. Canada's tech sector would double overnight.

I can even see that happening if the next couple US elections go the wrong way.


Fed up with what? They care about nothing but making money. It's very infantile to think otherwise.

Which is why getting an equally-skilled workforce in the same timezone at a fraction of the cost would be a huge selling point, would it not?

Add to that less friction around growing this workforce by bringing in new talent from abroad and it seems like a slam dunk.


Amazon and Microsoft already are moving people to Canada if they can't secure H1B as far as I understand.

Also timelines. I don't have first-hand experience, but the people I've talked to said they had citizenship within two years.

That sounds way too short. Until a few years ago you needed to be a resident (=reside) three years before you can apply (which takes about another year). I think now it's four + application processing time.

Canada requires you to be a PR holder and in the country for 1095 days in the past 5 years to apply for citizenship.

Up to 365 of those can be accounted for while being a temporary resident (on a work or study visa) on a "1 day for 2 days" basis.

You also need to actually be in Canada all those days. Any day that you're outside delays your citizenship by a day.

Then it takes about a year to process your citizenship application.

Overall, it's still much faster than most anywhere else.


> Up to 365 of those can be accounted for while being a temporary resident (on a work or study visa) on a "1 day for 2 days" basis.

I think it's more like every day that you are physically present in Canada pre-PR counts as 0.5 days. There's no such thing as a "tourist" under Canadian immigration law: you get a temporary resident visa/status/permit for your temporary "tourist" visits.

I think the part-day test applies (if you arrive in Canada at 10PM, even though you were only present for 2 hours, it counts as a half day).


It’s 3 years but applications are taking 12 months to process so 4 years total.

I'd say also the stability and non-stupidity of their immigration laws is an advantage too. I am always correcting myself when I work with USCIS: they are not stupid and slow, they are deliberately malevolent.

Canada/Australia have thriving scene, but somehow the number of jobs is really low.

There was a nice discussion on reddit about brain drain to Australia/Canada.

https://www.reddit.com/r/cscareerquestions/comments/9l1pug/w... https://www.reddit.com/r/startups/comments/9l3ueo/which_coun...


Usually, jobs follow. Big companies already use Canada as a bench for foreign workers who couldn't get the H1-B through lottery.

In the last couple months, I heard 2 big announcements, Microsoft establishing their Canada HQ[0] in Toronto, Uber [1] is investing big time.

[0] - https://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2018/09/11/microsoft-canadian-...

[1] - https://techvibes.com/2018/09/13/uber-expands-canadian-prese...

[2] - https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-07-24/toronto-b...


Yep my friend in Ukraine got an offer from one of US tech giants the process is if they can't secure H1B they just move people to Canada.

'Toronto’s tech scene is so hot the city created more jobs than the San Francisco Bay area, Seattle and Washington, D.C., combined last year, while leapfrogging New York in a ranking of “talent markets."'

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-07-24/toronto-b...


I can't comment on the tech scene in Melbourne, as I don't really participate in it outside of work, but there are plenty of jobs here.

It took me less than 2 weeks to find a job as a Ruby on Rails developer here in Melbourne.

The comments bagging on Australia seem like the classic self-denigrating comments that Aussies love to make about themselves.


You won't have any trouble finding IT jobs in the big cities. But ironically enough, the difficulty of getting a visa in Australia has also been ratcheted up recently, meaning that many employers who would love to hire can't sponsor the visa...

I am in the same boat. Planning to move to Canada next year. I have worked in the Valley for 10 years. Had a great time, but unfortunately the wait for GC is over 20 years now and the administration has signaled that we are not welcome (my H1 was denied for some BS reasons).

I guess the people like you have been stealing good American jobs and depressing wages in the Bay Area, and that has been keeping the wages at the artificially low 400K :)

first half starts to look like a troll comment, and it's probably too late for those down voting to realize the sarcasm which is apparent in the second half of your comment :D

Dunno. Salary in Silicon Valley - $300k. Salary in Vancouver - $80k. Rent almost the same. Weather in Silicon Valley - year-round sunny. Weather in Vancouver - 2 months of sun, rest gloomy. Are you sure you want to move to Canada?

It used to be that MS/AMZN had a back up base in Vancouver for anyone who didn't make the cut with H1B/O-1.


Why are you comparing an extreme high salary in SF to an average salary in Vancouver?

$300k is a high salary but a perfectly ordinary total comp in the Bay Area (with the caveat that $100-150k of it may be illiquid for a few years).

If you work at FAANG like companies surely

your salary numbers seem a little off, and, at least in sf rent numbers are not the same. compare new 1bdrm apts between sf and yvr and you'll see.

amazon/microsoft just regularly employs people in YVR, not just for L1 purposes. they've been causing salaries (and rents) to rise.

anyhow, you're discounting a lot of things about Vancouver because you make a little more and the weather is a little sunnier.


I spent some time in Vancouver, I can compare. And people are extremely upset about rent hike, not sure why would anyone want to go there at the moment to be honest. The same happening in Toronto and Montreal AFAIK.

i also spent some time in vancouver. amazon has pulled up salaries across the area since expanding there a couple years ago.

I'm pretty sure Amazon employees in Vancouver make about the same as employees in the Seattle HQ. That might not be on par with what you'd get in SF but it wouldn't be that far off. When I moved from Vancouver to SF I went from paying ~$1000 for an apartment in East Van to paying over $2000 for a similarly sized aparment in the suburbs south of SF. Both places were comparable for size and access to Skytrain/BART for getting into downtown but the Vancouver location was a lot more convenient in general.

You're also overstating the difference in the weather. SF gets plenty of foggy, gloomy days.


Vancouver rent is much cheaper than SF in absolute terms (2000 CAD vs 3750USD) - it's even cheaper if you're willing to live in the suburbs and commute. Vancouver is expensive if you make a local salary, but it's great for remote work.

http://dailyhive.com/vancouver/padmapper-average-rent-canada...

https://www.rentjungle.com/average-rent-in-san-francisco-ren...


At this point, salary stocks doesn't matter. We have made enough living in the Bay Area. I can personally weather the low salary for a few years

Isn't compensation, even after adjusting for cost of living and health insurance, much lower in Canada than anywhere in the U.S.?

Most people don't care about money, they want to raise family in a safe environment, I interview a lot of foreigners and there is clear trend that they don't want to go to the US with the current administration.

That sounds great, I welcome less competition on the job market. Btw I've lived in Toronto before, have a family there and know the tech scene pretty well. If people didn't care about money and job satisfaction, you would not have that many Canadians here in SV. Most of the ones I talked too would like to go back at one point, but career prospects are very bleak. One would need to take a massive paycut and face fierce competition for a few available jobs out there. I know decent engineers making 70-90K which is essentially living paycheck to paycheck.

Just to provide context to that 70-90k range, median household income in Toronto is $78k.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Median_household_incom...


> you would not have that many Canadians here in SV.

You are talking about Canadian citizens not immigrants who want to live in a developed country.


That's very much true. The only way to survive in Toronto is through consulting for fintech. From engineer's point of view those are mostly jobs from hell

> Most people don't care about money,

This is BS. Most ppl care about money above all else. India is a not a war zone its a "safe environment to raise family".

> I interview a lot of foreigners and there is clear trend that they don't want to go to the US with the current administration.

Why are you interviewing them then? Are you in Canada?


After a certain point, more money takes lower priority than other aspects like life goals, hobbies, family, environment, etc.

Are the countries these workers coming from so much more unsafe than the US or Canada? Otherwise, I think people do care about the money (as they should!).

> Are the countries these workers coming from so much more unsafe than the US or Canada?

Perhaps - but other than gun violence, if I went back home several things would be unsafe.

Money can buy a lot of things, but it takes more money to buy a first world lifestyle in India than it takes to do it in Canada (or even the US, as surprising as it sounds).

Buying clean smoke free air and water you can drink out of the tap might not feel like luxuries, but that's priced in here (& even there, this is by no means perfect - see Flint).

And at least, I've yet to be stopped by a cop who wanted a bribe.


It's very likely that pay in Canada is a lot higher than many people's home countries (e.g. India). So it's more a calculation of "high pay + security + life benefits" in Canada and "even higher pay but nothing else" in the US.

Canada makes a lot of sense. A lot of these people aren't just economic migrants, they are looking to settle down and start new lives. No immigrant in their right mind would do that in the US right now (if they have a viable alternative).


[flagged]


Regional slurs aren't welcome here, including internecine ones like this. Please don't post like this to HN again.

https://news.ycombinator.com/newsguidelines.html


Don't forget Toronto's crack-smoking mayor Rob Ford. Stephen Harper's government was extremely "conservative" (corrupt and anti-science).

I have lived in both Alberta and Quebec. The casual, open, and brutal racism against Native Americans in both provinces is disgusting and makes any anti-immigrant sentiments seem tame in comparison.


Thanks for posting this. It seems to me that everyone is looking for a way out of a difficult circumstance and see Canada as some sort of a paradise. I grew up in the Middle East, the labor laws there are much worse than the US; so I'm personally not worried. If I have to leave, I will.

Lifelong Albertan here, sans a 5 year stint in Ontario for uni.

Stop shitting on a place that you clearly haven't spent any time in.


Yup. Last time I looked, Seattle paid twice what Toronto did. Seattle was more expensive, but only about 25%.

Canada just doesn't have the sort of top-tier companies that go head to head competing for talent that the US does. Hence, rates are lower.


People who have spent a few years at Google, Facebook, Apple, etc would have accumulated more than enough assets[1] that the drop in real compensation is an easy tradeoff to make for massively reduced stress in life.

And a far easier citizenship process in Canada means they won't have to worry about their kids anymore.

[1] https://danluu.com/startup-tradeoffs/


No because the cost of living is very high in Canada for it's major cities. Cities where there are jobs with decent-ish pay have high housing costs, the only exception being waterloo where houses are merely expensive. Also the cost of everything is about %20 higher. The weather is also relatively bad. Overall with the high pay in the USA, it's better to be a upper-middle class person in the USA than a upper-middle class person in Canada.

The assets accumulated from 6+ years working in the Bay Area would generate more than enough interest annually to cover the difference in living costs.

I agree about the weather, but bad weather doesn't affect your mental health anywhere as much as the uncertainty in America's never-ending visa process.


As more of the best engineering talent moves to Canada (or decides not to come to the US in the first place), it should: 1) increase salaries in the Bay Area in the short-term as their a shortage of engineers 2) decrease salaries in Canada in the short-term as their is a surplus of engineers

The more interesting thing to consider is whether US tech companies will begin to build out more aggressively in Canada instead of the US. Amazon HQ3 might make a lot of sense in Canada.


By HQ3 do you mean HQ2 (the one Amazon is currently in the process for selecting a city for), or are you talking about a theoretical far future new new HQ?

More importantly, with more and more talent present in Canada, more and more startup funding will move there.

I'm not sure that's true. Availability of VC capital is a tricky thing. There's some in Canada but only seems to be in small pockets. The startup scene in Vancouver is so small that basically everyone knows everyone else, for example. Vancouver is also suffering a real estate crisis that is worse than Silicon Valley's. I think it really takes large institutional draws to make a serious dent in the size of a talent pool that would ultimately draw larger VCs.

> I'm not sure that's true. Availability of VC capital is a tricky thing. There's some in Canada but only seems to be in small pockets.

But that is the reality TODAY based on the talent pool accumulated YESTERDAY.

For other countries, that YESTERDAY is TODAY. They want a SV future and if they had to import some people to recreate SV, this pool of people is it.


It's a lot lower in Canada, but simply the uncertainties of and anxieties caused by living in the US (for many of us) is unbearable.

That doesn't particularly matter when you can't get or retain a visa to work in the US.

Maybe salaries in those places will increase as a result.


It will be interesting to see if this is true, or whether they will go down and the local workforce will be negatively impacted as a result. Conversely, it will be interesting to see whether salaries for US techies will go up, or older people will have more opportunities. I guess we'll have to wait and see.

Interest in offshore talent will go up. The US is lagging in education and can't fulfill the need for cost effective talent. The benefit of developers being in the US is not much of a benefit globally.

Why would salaries increase? If anything, they would drop due to increased supply.

Salaries are incredibly high in SF because of the high supply; it's an aggregation/network effect. SF is the world's tech center. As that starts fading globally, and SF is no longer the obvious and undisputed place to base your operations, great developers moving to other locations should drive up wages there and start heating up the job markets in those cities that are now becoming mini-SFs now that they're no longer being starved of oxygen from everyone migrating to SF.

> Why would salaries increase? If anything, they would drop due to increased supply.

As paradoxical as it might sound, competition attracts more and more work and raises wages for top talent. That's why SV has high salaries for engineers, NYC/London has high salary for finance, Bangalore has high salaries for local engineers (because competition creates an eco system, increasing the fight for talent).

Imagine Amazon moving their minimum wage workers to Ohio and then giving them $15/hr. Now, all other Ohio companies have to pay $15/hr or lose talent. Then the other companies start paying $18/hr and Amazon loses talent. Then Amazon raises rate to $20/hr and others lose talent and this keeps growing as more and more employers move to the region to find all those skilled employees who can join and be productive right away.


Money isn't everything. Software engineers in any developed country get paid enough to live a comfortable life.

I suppose my comments from yesterdays thread about "Cheap places to live with a good intellectual atmosphere" is relevant:

I did the math for Toronto(which is more expensive than Montreal, and about the same as Vancouver).

For a typical software engineer, taxes take away 25% of gross pay in Ontario while it's over 30% in California and New York. Cost of living is much less(by 30-40% if you rent) in Toronto compared to Cali/New York. Of course, you will also earn 40% less in USD. So it about evens out. The site Hired.com came to similar conclusions that I've attached in an image below [2]

To go into more detail, According to numbeo[1] which crowdsources data, groceries and restaurants are 20% cheaper(adjusted for currency) in Toronto, but of course the salary is more than 20% lower. But the real kicker is the rent, and while Toronto rent is definitely increasing, it is nowhere close to NYC of Silicon Valley levels, and most sources do say you have to pay 50% more for an equivalent apartment in NYC.

Also according to my calculations from the data on numbeo, the equivalent of (pre-tax) $135,000 USD in NYC is $110,000 CAD in Toronto. It is of course easier to get 135k in NYC than 110k in Toronto, but the difference isn't nearly as big as the CAD/USD differences and wage gap makes it seem. And if you can get a job in the Waterloo-Kitchenner area, CoL of course plummets. Freelancing for clients in the US or working remotely also has great advantages.

If you're a US citizen, I don't think Canada or Toronto is enticing enough to drag you away - especially with places like Seattle, Austin and Colorado being better than SV and NYC in terms of Salary:CoL. But if you're not, Canada is comfortably the second best company to be a software engineer in, and the expected expansion of Amazon, Google and Microsoft in Toronto is likely to create a lot more high paying jobs and new startups in the coming years, especially with the US's anti-immigration stance basically making it impossible for Indians and the Chinese to get permanent residency.

The excellent universities and industry leading research in AI of UToronto and UWaterloo is a bonus if you're a student as well.

[1]https://www.numbeo.com/cost-of-living/compare_cities.jsp?cou....

[2] http://www.planetweb.ca/wp-content/uploads/2017/04/img4-7ee8...


Overall, I agree with your points, but I have some points of contention with some of the analysis.

I don't think it's quite fair to include tax if you're not going to include savings for things like health care.

Furthermore, Toronto's housing market, while less expensive than Cali/NY, is still insane. I know you acknowledge this in passing, but Montreal's housing market is insanely affordable, and we've a great tech/uni scene.

Immigration to Quebec, might be getting harder for non-Canadians w/ our new provincial gov't, however.


Free healthcare is a standard benefit in the tech industry in the US. Even after deductibles and with heavy use, you're going to at the most end up with a couple thousand dollars in out-of-pocket costs.

While Montreal does have very cheap(or at least non-insane) housing, jobs are harder to get and French is still a big thing as far as I understand: you need to know French well to fit in. Also the weather is more extreme. I think if you can land a good gig in Montreal and are good at learning a new language it would be the ideal place in Canada, but finding a good job is hard.

> you need to know French well to fit in

That's actually the opposite, at least in tech, you need to talk English. In both placed I worked we had to talk English because there was a few employees that didn't talk French at all.


There isn't much savings in terms of health care. In Ontario, if you're working you have to pay a health care tax that is similar to what an employee would pay at a Silicon Valley company. And then the health care is much worse in terms of responsiveness. For example, I have Kaiser, and my Canadians friends are envious at how quickly I get scheduled for procedures. My family and friends have had to wait months for some procedures or tests.

> In Ontario, if you're working you have to pay a health care tax that is similar to what an employee would pay at a Silicon Valley company.

You must be comparing California monthly costs to Ontario yearly costs. Maximum Ontario annual premiums are $900.[1] To get equivalent coverage (by equivalent, I mean in terms of insurance value - as in, I won't have a $15,000 copay if I get into a serious accident) from Kaiser in Southern California (the "silver" plan) is about $750 per month for me and my wife. If you are covered through your employer (we both freelance), you might be getting fooled into thinking you are paying less money because your paychecks show a smaller number as "deducted," but that is because the rest is paid by your employer and is still part of your compensation.

[1] https://www.ontario.ca/data/ontario-health-premium-rates


Don't forget prescription drug coverage in Ontario if you have to buy your own insurance.

Hell, in BC, the gov't plan has a $4000 deductible if you make more than $100,000.


Almost all professional employers include prescription drug coverage as a part of their standard benefits package.

The $4k deductible in BC (which is similar in Ontario), provides catastrophic drug coverage for those that don't have drug coverage (e.g. contracts).


I did say "what an employee would pay at a Silicon Valley company." I pay no monthly premiums, but if I added my wife, it's about $100/month. So you verified what I said above.

And your point about being "fooled" is disingenuous. Canadians pay for their health care through their taxes, so the amount is much higher as well than the health care tax which is nominal.


There’s no “health care tax” in Ontario.

Sure there is. There is a "health care premium" on your tax return.

If you don't pay it, you'll get charged with tax evasion.

When the government announced it, they avoided the word "tax", but it absolutely is. Don't buy the gov's BS.


That's correct. There's something that the provincial government calls a health care tax, but it is actually just another tax, whose proceeds go into the general revenue pot, with no specific connection to health care. You have to pay it even if you are not eligible for provincial health benefits (due to insufficient residence time, for example).

As a non-Canadian, what about Calgary or Edmonton?

Afaik taxes are rather more than in the US. If I enter the 110000 CAD into https://simpletax.ca/calculator I get a 30% tax rate. It will also get more at a higher income. Washington/US has less income tax overall, even with higher salaries.

Overall if you earn 30-40% less, you might also have that much less after taxes.

Regarding cost of living: I found the minor expenses (e.g. restaurants) to be quite a bit cheaper than in the US. However the already expensive things are expensive here too. Especially housing/rent, which is currently pretty crazy here in Vancouver. I would expect being able to buy a condo or house a lot faster in the US than here.


Seattle/Austin/Colorado are better than Canada in almost every aspect.

But, you could make an argument that with the higher tax rates, renting/house prices and living expenses of California and NYC, Canada could be a viable alternative, especially if you want to go freelance/part-time and need the healthcare, or are a non-US citizen.


data, groceries and restaurants are 20% cheaper(adjusted for currency)

Why would you adjust for currency when you're paid in Canadian dollars?


They are comparing salaries in USD. Using one currency for all comparisons.

What are they referring to as data? Cell costs are pretty expensive in Canada for what you get.

This assumes you live in the highest CoL areas in the US. If you live outside of the Bay Area or NYC you take home significantly more than in Canada. In Canada you NEED to live in high CoL areas like Vancouver, Toronto, Montreal to get work.

Montreal is significantly cheaper to live in than either Vancouver[0] or Toronto[1]. I'm not sure what low CoL areas in the US are commanding high wages, but CoL is way lower in Montreal if you compare to places like Boulder, CO [2] or Dallas, TX,[3] which apparently have good tech scenes [4].

[0] https://www.numbeo.com/cost-of-living/compare_cities.jsp?cou...

[1] https://www.numbeo.com/cost-of-living/compare_cities.jsp?cou...

[2] https://www.numbeo.com/cost-of-living/compare_cities.jsp?cou...

[3] https://www.numbeo.com/cost-of-living/compare_cities.jsp?cou...

[4] https://www.stoodnt.com/blog/top-student-cities-in-the-us-ou...


Not really because provincial income tax is 10-15% higher than Ontario and BC. Numbeo does not include taxes IIRC.

Yes and no. For a new grad its still not hard to get an initial job offer in the excess of 200k TC in the Bay. If you're a DINK that's 400k. There are simply no jobs that a fresh grad can get paid that much in Canada. And thats not even factoring in future cash flow from working in the Bay (better prospects, prestige etc).

Also currency, it sucks. Everything is more expensive. You can't get anywhere without 1-2 stops if you're flying.

I'm finishing up my last year at University of Alberta, and there is literally nothing that will keep me here.


As someone in the big 4 I can tell you 200k TC in SV is nowhere near 200k annually starting out. That would involve 70-80k in RSU that vest over 4 years, and in companies like Amazon(whose stock has been going up like crazy) that is divested 5%, 15%, 40% and 40% annually, so you get the bulk of it only later on.\

It wasn't long ago that Google was offering 100k base in the valley(where <80k salary is considered below poverty line) and many Google and Facebook engineers still share an apartment with roommates.

If you want to maximise disposable income, you'll end up with much more at Seattle or Austin than in the bay or New York.


Thanks for you input.

But I am aware of the breakdown of the compensation packages and I stand behind my statement having just accepted a new grad role at FAANG. 70-80k RSUs are on the lower end.

For example standard Facebook offers are 140 base, 100k signing, 150 stock / 4y.

I will be living with my partner and we calculated that with an apartment of 3-4k a month will be still saving at least tens of thousands of dollars a month, factoring in car lease, food, and what not.


Oh yeah, I agree that a FAANG job(Facebook is usually the highest TC) in the valley is way better value then staying in Canada. But of course the average person doesn't get close to that much. On _average_ software engineers are better off in Seattle than in the valley, and if their annual comp is less than 140k(average entry level salary is 100k in San Fran), they should consider alternatives that look like they pay less.

Over the last 4 years accounting for stock rises, CoL and lower taxes, Amzn/Microsoft in Seattle would have paid out quite a bit more than FAANG in the valley.


I don't think US realizes that Canada and Australia are actively poaching talent. These guys work there for a couple of years, some of them start startups, businesses. They hire other top people (both local and talented immigrants). Then they sell their products/services to the whole world!

Major companies get attracted to areas with talent. That's why so so many companies have major offices in India now. Because of the pool of talent. Not just because of cost-cutting.

An example is: If Amazon doesn't hire enough smart people, they won't be able to expand/move nimbly and will get beaten by Flipkart in India (who have their own empire desires).


This news has to be taken with a pinch of salt. Not everyone moves to Canada after they get a residency thru the Express Entry system. The majority of them do something called "soft landing" to activate their permanent resident card and go back to US the same day. They use Canada as a plan B if something happens with their greencard process in future. This is actually detrimental for other eligible people who have applied for express entry because H1Bs fill the top layers of the express entry system and thus the permanent residence permits go wasted because H1Bs don't come to stay in Canada.

Québec is an exception here and do not follow merit based system. So the immigrants coming in Québec are not skilled or employable and is a burden to Canadians. On the other hand, skilled applicants in Québec are waiting 4-5 years for a permit from Québec because Quebec do not follow merit system. The new CAQ leader is also against immigration and has vowed to cut down immigration. So any startups planning to have an office should be aware of this. Québec IT employers are struggling to find talents because of the dysfunctional immigration department of Québec.

Now the highly regarded global talent stream is only applicable to large employers.

Startups still have to go the hard way. Getting an LMIA work permit will take 3-6 months and renewing it will also take the same amount of time.

Overall, Canada's Express Entry system is a merit based system. But the candidates do not need to prove their technical skills. Anyone with a Bachleor's degree, a good command of English and 3 years of work experience can get a residency in Canada. This doesn't necessarily mean there is talent. Moreover, a talented international worker might travel to many countries, so if you are an applicant who have travelled to many countries, 6 months express entry time do not apply, Canada will put you thru something called Security Screening which can last 1 to 2 years.

So the 6 months timeline are for people who haven't travelled a lot or worked at many countries. It's just for a less experienced Bachelor degree holder with a good command of English. Do not come to Canada for the money, salaries are not that great. Toronto and Vancouver housing prices are pumped up thanks to Quebec's money for citizenship scheme. Québec immigration is dysfunctional, so good luck finding talents in Montreal for your startup.


> The majority of them do something called "soft landing" to activate their permanent resident card and go back to US the same day. They use Canada as a plan B if something happens with their greencard process in future.

This only buys a maximum of 3 years of insurance (from date of landing). After that, unless you're living with a Canadian citizen spouse, you'll lose PR unless you move to Canada.


True story, I know of many skilled folks who moved to Canada because residency in the U.S was just too painful.

For what it's worth, I know many skilled folks (myself included) who moved from Canada to the US because there are more job prospects with significantly higher pay. I hope all these people make Canada more competitive since I'd like to move back at some point but right now, the US is more cost effective if you can get in.

Yes, that is also true. Its why I'm still in the Bay Area.

This sounds weird but I've wondered something. Since California is a sanctuary state, can't workers come over with H1B and then simply not leave when the Visa expires?

I would not recommend this.

Couple of issues:

1. You might want to visit your family in home country. How do you enter back.

2. CBP can put a border check point anywhere 100 miles from a border. Which covers most of California (land and sea border) including SF. If you get caught in one, your would be arrested and deported.

3. If you overstay for more than 6 months you are banned from US for 3 years. If you overstay for more than 1 year, you are banned from entering US for 10 years.

4. Government knows that you are overstaying. They can also easily find out about your bank accounts, health insurance, doctor visits, kids going to school. They could apprehend you if they want to. It could start by sending you a NTA (Notice to Appear). Once you get an NTA, you can't even leave the country on your own terms without triggering a re-entry bar.

5. Most good employers won't give you a job without a work authorization.

Sadly, what you had suggested has been the life story of all the undocumented workers in US. And it is really tough. I know H1-B has it bad, but it is nothing compared to what the undocumented workers have been going through. When you live in the shadows and under fear of law enforcement for a big part of your life, it can mess up with your mental health. I wish there is a good outcome for them.

Unfortunately the low skilled undocumented workers don't have much options in life. But I am not sure why someone who is educated and skilled, would subject themselves to such a life. Just go somewhere else!


Thank you for that information

> Since California is a sanctuary state, can't workers come over with H1B and then simply not leave when the Visa expires?

No.

“Sanctuary state” means state resources (including state personnel time) aren't being used to actively aid federal immigration authorities, it doesn't mean federal immigration laws are nullified or that you won't be deported out face other federal law consequences in the case you describe.


As a software engineer who wanted to leave my country I read how H-1B worked and removed US from my list of wanted countries.

I am a PR in Canada and got it after have worked here for 1 year.

I have friends who worked with me at previous company in the US division living in fear of getting their lives taken away from them if the company fires them and they are in a huge waiting list for green card (mostly Indian and Chinese) and don't want to change jobs because of fear.


You took the best decision. It's not worth even a million dollars per year, if living in the US means bonded labor. The amount of stress that comes along with it is mind numbing.

The UK is an amazing place as well if you are looking for tech jobs outside of Asia.

Almost all major companies have offices her plus a decent startup scene.


It's also nearly impossible to permanently migrate to

Why’s that ? Asking as someone on a tier 2 visa ? I thought I could get a residency in 5 years ?

Or are you saying the visa itself is too hard to get ?


You can get permanent residency after living for 5 years, and citizenship a year after that.

While the tech scene is indeed very strong in some fields (like FinTech), it's also been bleeding since the Brexit vote, and the situation is certainly not going to improve any time soon.

On the other hand, I guess that might mean more opportunities for non-EU immigrants?


That's what some of the pro Brexit mp's were saying - well actually lying - to try and get some typically labour communities to vote Brexit.

Since India is the most racist country in the world many qualified/talented people are leaving it.

https://businesstech.co.za/news/lifestyle/116644/the-most-ra...

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2325502/Map-shows-wo...


I wonder how much of this is just the political winds. Under the George Bush days there were similar sentiments and attitudes, but it never went anywhere and SV still remained dominant. Canada has long tried to capitalize on the US political situation with mixed results.

Salaries are low, most of Canada has poor weather and unaffordable housing prices in the major cities. I guess if you're willing to stick it out you get citizenship, but a far less valuable citizenship compared to other western countries.

I'm also curious as to if and when the immigration situation is going to hit Canadian politics as it did in the US. The facade of being pro immigration is exactly that, there are just as many racists in Canada as there are in the US.


Canada does not have "a far less valuable citizenship compared to other western countries".

It's standard of living is (size of house, consumer spending power) is better than any large country except the USA.

And the weather is not that different to Boston, Chicago, New York (for Toronto) and Seattle (for Vancouver).

Canada won't develop a racism problem because 20% of the country are already immigrants and Canada doesn't have a bible belt south (canada politics are like that of american coasts and the europeans).


>Canada won't develop a racism problem because 20% of the country are already immigrants and Canada doesn't have a bible belt south

You do have the prairies though and they can be as conservative as the Dakotas. (With a similar accent to boot)

For example, Calgary police officers won't be able to do marijuana off duty, despite it being explicitly legal at the federal level for all of Canada.

If you browse /r/publicfreakout you will see plenty of racist prairie meltdowns.


I live right on the coast, a stone's throw away from NYC. People here are racist as fuck. And my girlfriend was harassed in Germany and Austria for the color of her skin to such a degree that she had to cut her trip short. If the coastal US and Europe are your barometers, then Canada has a racism problem too.

I really despise this kind of regionalism because it allows real problems to be smugly swept under the rug. I don't know where you live exactly, but people there most likely aren't inherently any more righteous than people elsewhere.


I live in Toronto, and many people are racist here too.

But the point was about Trump - yes New York and California might turn xenophobic, and then Canada might too, but it's not likely (too many minorities/immigrants are friends or marriage partners of white people in these places).

Europe is more racist and has always has been (witness soccer match hooligansim). They're limousine liberals (they don't have many dark skinned people except for UK/France and so hate "racism in theory", but don't have much direct experience with immigrants/minorities to become racist like many in the american south).


> Canada does not have "a far less valuable citizenship compared to other western countries".

I disagree, it really does. Obviously for someone from India they don't care that much, their standards are much lower for what a "good country" means. Don't get me wrong, Canada is a nice place to live. But it's not Europe or the US.

> And the weather is not that different to Boston, Chicago, New York (for Toronto) and Seattle (for Vancouver).

Those are the worst weather cities in the US. Your best weather (Vancouver) is some of our worst (Seattle)

> Canada won't develop a racism problem because 20% of the country are already immigrants and Canada doesn't have a bible belt south

I've heard Canadians express pro trump sympathies, so it's pretty arrogant to think that you won't experience any blowback from immigration policies.


I'm sorry, but that doesn't compute for me. Canada is USA lite, can hardly notice a difference.

I've lived in both europe (UK) and canada, and hands down Canada beats any european country in standard of living.

It has less social welfare benefits than europe, but higher standard of living.

Canadians prefer Toronto weather to Vancouver, and as I said, Toronto is no different to Chicago or Boston in weather at all.

There are pockets of racists everywhere, but Canada is literally the least racist country on earth. It's like saying California or New York will turn racist and become pro-trump.


The US hands out one million green cards per year. There has not been a meaningful reduction in how much immigration is allowed into the US nor in how many green cards are issued. You'll notice something entirely missing from the article: there are no actual figures supporting its claims anywhere to be found, only a few individual anecdotes.

What's happening is Canada is trying to become more aggressive in the pursuit of tech immigrants that are tired of waiting for US citizenship. It's a sensible plan on their part, and the US can afford the loss. The US isn't suffering from a tech employee deficit, despite the propaganda out of the big tech companies that want cheaper labor. The tech giants are all generating obscene profits, and they can all afford to pay very high salaries.

Microsoft + Google + Facebook + Amazon + Intel + Apple = ~$165 billion in likely 2019 profit. Excuse me while I cry over their labor costs.

The Trump Admin + Republican Congress have barely changed anything in relation to immigration. The major immigration legislation speaks for itself: there hasn't been any. And the Democrats are about to take back to the House.

The biggest complaint you'll see, is that there's a long wait time, which illustrates the extreme demand for US citizenship, as the rate of green card issuance hasn't declined.


There's been no legislative change, but the the Trump administration appears to be enforcing the rules as strictly as possible. Per this article from Marketplace (https://www.marketplace.org/2018/10/05/business/recent-immig...), they've ended expedited processing of H-1Bs, they're questioning more H-1B applications and they're denying more H-1B applications. They are definitely making it as hard as possible for H-1Bs within the current rules.

This is a reasonable comment. I don't understand why it is greyed out.

That's not quite true. US legislating branch gives the Executive branch significant power to "interpret" legislation and Trump admin has taken full advantage of that in order to screw legal immigrants. For reference look at the "Hire Ameican" executive order. Many of the requirements for legal immigration are intentionally vague and is left at the mercy of a exec branch leader to interpret, and that happens to be a MAGA guy. Even worse, most legal statutes are actually at the mercy of individual USCIS officers to interpret with wide latitudes. For example, a single USCIS officer determines if you have the qualification to do a job that you have been hired for. It's very arbitrary

Right, it's an optics problem. Trump gets in office and suddenly everyone starts seeing old issues in a new light. But as you pointed out, almost nothing has changed.

Ends up US citizenship is in real demand. It's also not a surprise that two of the most back logged nationalities, China and India, have the most populous countries.


While many in the comments are throwing salary/cost of living/taxes numbers left and right but no one is making a case for extreme winters in Canada vs the Bay Area. I can understand that it might not mean a lot to some but for me it can be a deal breaker.

I'm born in Brazil and lived in both Toronto and SF. Honestly, the weather in Toronto is really not that bad. My wife calls it "having proper seasons". SF weather is somewhat cool all year round and you always need a sweater at dusk/dawn, whereas Toronto summer is actually hot. Also, going to the beach in Toronto is surprisingly nice - lake water is always calm (great for kids), no freezing wind and no fog.

If the problem is only winter, Vancouver's winter can hardly be called extreme, since it rarely dips below freezing point in the city.

The elephant in the room when it comes to salaries in the US-vs-Canada discussion that young people seem to not realize is that, in Canada, it's fairly trivial for a spouse to get a work visa and get a decent income even outside of the tech sector, whereas you're more or less forced to be a stay-at-home-mom family if you're planning to build a life in the US.


Hmm yeah hard winters or having your spouse deported. Hard choice.

I feel like the number of tech people who legitimately worry about their spouse being deported is extremely small. And it's only two years until the next election anyways.

It will be really interesting to see how the community reacts when they revoke H4-EADs. It is one thing that you did not had ability to work for years and then you did and suddenly you don't.

> worry about their spouse being deported

And then there are others who are hoping for it...


For high skilled people it can be I know a CTO who moved back to the uk from the valley mainly because his wife could not work - she was a senior nurse I recall.

I think that gives little reassurance.

Well your initial point was that people will put up with Canada's cold winters to avoid having their spouse deported. I don't think that is a realistic scenario (and if your spouse is an illegal immigrant, I seriously doubt Canada would let the immigrate).

It is sad that many people who are sympathizing with this legal immigration issue, fail to realize that it was not all hunky dory for high skilled legal immigrants (HSLI) before Trump started.

FWIW, HSLIs especially from India are suffering because of policies by Clinton/Bush/Obama administrations.

Trump administration just ensured that every rule is followed to the T.

This may sound sadistic, but I'm glad Trump administration is doing this, because immigrants and employers will start feeling the heat of these insane rules, and finally it may lead to a sensible legal immigration reform. Had it not been for Trump, you'd have more than 95% of those HSLI waiting for Green Cards not utter a thing against the rules from the previous administrations.

Getting deported is not the issue. Problem is that every single day you wake up to this uncertainty that you may get deported, but you are not sure. And being a legal immigrant who broke no rules, adds to that frustration, of being treated like an unwanted immigrant in a country that most people are blissfully unaware of.


> And it's only two years until the next election anyways.

At this point with 50% approval rating, I doubt you'll see an incumbent lose 2020


Not sure you are looking at the right source but have not seen an approval rating that high on any polls.


Yes it is a huge socio-economic issue but I was referring only to economic part of it. No one would ever want to be separated from their family.

Vancouver is like Seattle, only a bit more rain than SF. Less fog.

OTOH it might be a deal breaker for others that there is no local skiing in the bay area, no legal mountain biking, etc.

Therefore I would consider weather and environment also a bit of a personal preference thing.


  no legal mountain biking
This is ridiculously false.

Toronto is a few hours north of NYC and Vancouver a few hours north of Seattle, both don't differ in weather from their counterparts too much.

The issue here is people are forced to leave Bay Area or felt they are unable or not welcome to stay. So there is no free choice between the two.

Are people with GCs screwed too? I've been postponing getting a citizenship, for no particular reason, but I'm now wondering if I should get on that just so that I don't somehow get bounced out of the country or get locked outside when I travel.

As a Canadian (in the Bay Area) today, getting bounced out of the U.S is always at the back of my mind.

There have been rumors that even naturalized citizens can have their citizenship revoked (but I'm not sure how that'll happen, since it's not easy to get the citizenship of a country that one left).

Not sure why one would not get citizenship when they have GC.


A friend of mine tells me that one of his biggest regrets from the past handful of years is not having applied for and received citizenship when President Obama was president. He has a misdemeanor (for something that almost every US citizen would consider trivial) from when he was a teenager but because of when it happened and what it is, naturalizing would require a waiver from USCIS in order to proceed (and to not be deported). President Obama's USCIS granted waivers for conduct so many years back almost as a matter of course. President Trump's USCIS--according to the two immigration lawyers my friend has consulted--has not only stopped granting the waivers, they refer applicants for the waivers instead to deportation proceedings. There's no one to advocate for people like him to be able to remain because he is a convicted criminal, even just of a minor offence, so he's been told to keep his head down and hope nobody investigates the dusty files.

But, assuming you are "clean," there are people to advocate for you so applying for citizenship should be a safe bet and would get you the guarantee of remaining in and traveling to and from the US for the rest of your life. If you intend to live here for the foreseeable future, I'd recommend giving it a go lest this administration decide to start trying to arbitrarily yank GCs.


Are there any downsides to getting one, outside of perhaps having to let go of one's other citizenships for countries that don't allow it?

One downside of getting US citizenship is that if you later move to another country (your original country or a third country), you will obligated to continue to file US income tax returns, and potentially pay US income taxes. Depending on your circumstances, your tax filing might be trivial or it might be complicated, and you may or may not actually owe taxes to the US. So this might be a minor annual hassle, or it might be a painful, time consuming and expensive process. It is possible to later give up your US citizenship, but it takes time and costs money.

If you move to another country and you still hold a Green Card, you must file US income tax returns as well - it's not just for citizens.

https://www.irs.gov/individuals/international-taxpayers/freq...

"if you are a U.S. citizen or a resident alien living outside the United States, your worldwide income is subject to U.S. income tax, regardless of where you live"


Yes, but terminating your GC status is much more easier than relinquishing your citizenship. After all, the visa is designed for that (to be something that you hold on to while in the US and give up when not maintaining permanent residency status anymore).

For sure - my comment was just referring to the often mistaken belief that a GC holder doesn't need to pay tax on income earned outside of the US.

It also increases the reporting regulations for most international banks. So it's very possible that you'll be prevented from being able to bank in the country you move to.

That's it so far as I know. If you are, for example, a Japanese or German national then naturalizing as a US citizen may be an issue for your current citizenship. (Germany will likely grant you permission to naturalize; Japan will not.)

If you are already a green card holder, you are already subject to the tax and other reporting requirements like a US citizen so the only real difference from the US perspective is you can't vote and aren't guaranteed to be able to cross the US border. It's that last bit that most people really want.


The US has tax on all income regardless of residency.

Green Card has a risk of deportation that citizenship does not. But the current administration is working to make citizenship revocable.

But the current administration is working to make citizenship revocable.

I firmly believe that the current administration would love to change the rules on citizenship. However the 14th amendment is extremely clear on this, and the courts have consistently ruled for decades that Congress and the President do not have the right to change the laws to strip citizenship from people. (This was extensively litigated over laws against dual citizenship.)

Therefore it is no more reasonable to fear the current administration making citizenship revocable than to fear the previous administration taking all the guns away.


I would say that it heavily depends on the current justices in the supreme court. With the current court composition I wouldn't say that both of those issues have equal risk of being revoked.

The current court makes this one pretty safe.

The most recent decision relevant to this topic was https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maslenjak_v._United_States in 2017. It was a 9-0 decision that a naturalized citizen who had made minor errors of fact in their citizenship declaration couldn't have their citizenship stripped because of that.

Between stare decisis and how solidly the court has been in protecting citizenship, this principle is not in any sort of trouble any time soon.


The US has a history of stripping people of their citizenship when things get bad, regardless of what the law says. It has happened before with Mexicans, it is happening again right now [1].

[1] https://www.vox.com/2018/8/30/17800410/trump-passport-birth-...


That is not "regardless of the law". That is "when it can be argued that the law does not apply".

The law itself is solid. Whether a particular person with paperwork issues will be given the presumption of the facts being in their favor is another story.


My point is the law is not nearly as clear cut and black and white as you make it out to be. It provides a lot of room for judgement and interpretation by those carrying it out in most cases. And unless a particular matter comes up before a court, "when it can be argued that the law does not apply" does not happen either - the immigration officer makes a decision and 99% of immigrants do not have the resources to fight it in a court. Believe me, neither your average CBP officer nor your average immigrant is very well versed in the minutiae of the law.

The end result is people can and do lose their citizenship status pretty often. Debating whether it is strictly unlawful is really besides the point.


Gotta give some context or a source for a claim like that. Is the revocation related to people found guilty of terrorism/treason, or is it a lower bar? Or is it if they found you lied in order to get citizenship, as was the case historically with Nazis?

There's been some recent cases around not wanting to accept certificates of home births in southern texas from 20+ years ago.

They have a unit for stripping people's citizenship now.

Lying on immigration applications has always been grounds for revocation of citizenship.

It's not always lying, that's why they created a unit to look into things when they decide to target someone. The trick is asking a lot of information on the forms (to increase the risk of mistakes), and then arguing that any discrepancy found does not have to be material to strip the citizenship.

And also stripping the citizenship of all the babies that one doctor or nurse has delivered over their career because they have lied at least once on a form.

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