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Old Nov 22, 04, 5:39 pm   #1
 
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Question surname on visa not matching amended name on passport?

My wife applied for an Indian visa recently, and received a visa with her maiden name, instead her "new" last name. The passport was amended with her new last name, but the photo page has her maiden name. Will this be a problem when we get to India?
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Old Nov 22, 04, 6:10 pm   #2
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That's very odd. One of my colleagues mentioned the exact same thing a few months ago. The stamp jockey at the Indian consulate wrote her maiden name on the visa even though her new last name was on her passport. She went to India and returned - I will ask her if she had a problem and post here if she did.
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Old Nov 22, 04, 7:25 pm   #3
 
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thanks for checking RPH. The consulate workers here ignored what was on the visa application form and used the 1st page of the passport (with the picture and other info) to write the visa. The amendment that says her new last name is on the last page of the passport, so they probably didn't see it.
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Old Nov 23, 04, 8:29 am   #4
 
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Visa issuing officer and immigration officer are quite independent to make their own judgment on the issues. That is why having a visa doesn't necessarily mean entry. If I was in your shoes I would sent/ given the passport back to the Indian consulate with an explanation letter asking them to change it to her new last name.

I don't know which Indian consulate is closest to you. If you don't have time to go personally, you can apply this by mail also and my experience (with NY consulate) is that they are quite efficient (if not courteous) and you should be able to get your passport/ visa back in about a week’s time. Here are the websites of all the Indian consulates in US except Hawaii.

NY- www.indiacgny.org
San Francisco - www.indianconsulate-sf.org
Chicago - chicago.indianconsulate.com
Washington DC - www.indianembassy.org
Houston, TX - www.cgihouston.org


Else if you want to take a chance, buy tickets on your wife's maiden name and then all the names (visa, passport (first page) and ticket) will be same and hope that the immigration officer in India will not, look at the last page of your passport. I would still recommend the first proposition.

Last edited by AA25; Nov 23, 04 at 8:32 am.
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Old Nov 23, 04, 11:37 am   #5
 
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Unhappy

Quote:
Originally Posted by AA25
Visa issuing officer and immigration officer are quite independent to make their own judgment on the issues. That is why having a visa doesn't necessarily mean entry. If I was in your shoes I would sent/ given the passport back to the Indian consulate with an explanation letter asking them to change it to her new last name.

I don't know which Indian consulate is closest to you. If you don't have time to go personally, you can apply this by mail also and my experience (with NY consulate) is that they are quite efficient (if not courteous) and you should be able to get your passport/ visa back in about a week’s time. Here are the websites of all the Indian consulates in US except Hawaii.

NY- www.indiacgny.org
San Francisco - www.indianconsulate-sf.org
Chicago - chicago.indianconsulate.com
Washington DC - www.indianembassy.org
Houston, TX - www.cgihouston.org


Else if you want to take a chance, buy tickets on your wife's maiden name and then all the names (visa, passport (first page) and ticket) will be same and hope that the immigration officer in India will not, look at the last page of your passport. I would still recommend the first proposition.
Her tickets are already have her married name, thats why the passport was amended. I will go to the consulate tomorrow and see if they can straighten it out. The other thing I worry about is whether the airline checkin staff will understand the name ammendment. Now I wish we just ticketed her ticket with her maiden name and not amend the passport, and wait till the passport was expired to change her name
She'll be bringing her old and new drivers license in case they want more id with her married name.
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Old Nov 24, 04, 1:12 am   #6
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If she's an American citizen and travelling on a visa issued under her maiden name where the passport's amended name change is noted in the very same US passport, there will not be a major issue -- especially if the visa was also issued in her maiden name. At most the immigration officer might ask for some document to prove marriage and/or maiden or married name and even this is unlikely. [Marriage certificate is good enough in any event.]

Indian immigration doesn't really care about what name her ticket is under as long as one of the two names (either first or last) on the ticket is close to what is on the ticket and on passport. If the visa name and the passport names are way off with no documented, reasonable explanation -- apparently a non-issue in your case -- then there may be an issue.

I would be more concerned about the airline than Indian immigration ... and the airline is unlikely to cause an issue if the name change amendment is included in her passport.
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Old Nov 24, 04, 1:12 am   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by billiam
My wife applied for an Indian visa recently, and received a visa with her maiden name, instead her "new" last name. The passport was amended with her new last name, but the photo page has her maiden name. Will this be a problem when we get to India?
It's not a problem. Just take along proof of name change/marriage certificate.

When are you going and which port of entry? [I only ask because I am often enough there as of late.]
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Last edited by GUWonder; Nov 24, 04 at 1:16 am.
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Old Nov 24, 04, 6:46 am   #8
 
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Slip a $20 bill into the passport when handing it over and you can travel with a visa in whatever name you want.

Seriously, Indian immigration is primarily concerned with detecting fake documents on outbound departures as well as dual-citizens who have not surrendered their Indian passports. A minor tourist visa issue like that will not even be noticed.
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Old Nov 24, 04, 10:53 am   #9
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Originally Posted by B747-437B
Slip a $20 bill into the passport when handing it over and you can travel with a visa in whatever name you want.
More things fly in Bombay, right?

B747-437B is just having fun when he suggests that as an approach.

Quote:
Originally Posted by B747-437B
Seriously, Indian immigration is primarily concerned with detecting fake documents on outbound departures as well as dual-citizens who have not surrendered their Indian passports. A minor tourist visa issue like that will not even be noticed.
Very true.
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Old Nov 24, 04, 1:05 pm   #10
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GUWonder
It's not a problem. Just take along proof of name change/marriage certificate.

When are you going and which port of entry? [I only ask because I am often enough there as of late.]
GUWonder, we'll be arriving and departing at TRV, so any tips for that airport will be appreciated!

Thanks to all the others with their info/tips regarding Indian immigration Money talks, in every language.

Regarding the proof of name change, the amendment on the last page of the passport is enough right? Its just "typed" on by the passport agency, I'm just hoping the airline counter staff will accept it. In any case, my wife will be bringing her old and new driver license to show her maiden and married name did change.
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Old Nov 24, 04, 5:34 pm   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by billiam
GUWonder, we'll be arriving and departing at TRV, so any tips for that airport will be appreciated!

Thanks to all the others with their info/tips regarding Indian immigration Money talks, in every language.

Regarding the proof of name change, the amendment on the last page of the passport is enough right? Its just "typed" on by the passport agency, I'm just hoping the airline counter staff will accept it. In any case, my wife will be bringing her old and new driver license to show her maiden and married name did change.
It's enough. If you happen to be going to/from DEL, do not try the bribe approach under any circumstances. [There is a sting operation underway.]
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Old Nov 26, 04, 12:50 am   #12
 
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Well, my wife went back to the consulate and they issued a new visa with her married name, and all is well
I just don't understand why they didn't use the name on the application. Well, next time, we'll be putting a stickie note on the photo page to tell the visa issuer to check the last page for the name amendment.
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Old Nov 26, 04, 1:57 am   #13
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GUWonder
It's enough. If you happen to be going to/from DEL, do not try the bribe approach under any circumstances. [There is a sting operation underway.]
Delhi immigration openly asks you for bribes if they decide you are a suitable target. On one occasion, I spent over an hour in a side room at Delhi airport departures (traveling as an Indian citizen on an Indian passport) being shaken down by immigration officers who made it very clear that a "donation" could speed me on my way soon enough. I finally escaped once I mentioned the name of the AI airport manager at the time, an old family friend, who presumably has enough clout to get them in trouble.

Still, Mumbai and most of the other airports in India target mainly the labour traffic to exploit for bribes since they are naive travelers for the most part. Delhi on the other hand brazenly targets anybody. Swinging a posting to Delhi airport is one of the most expensive "donations" for immigration officers anyway, so this is their only way of recouping costs.

As for "sting operations", that is simply another way to shake down the poor travelers who get caught up in the web. Catch the guy red handed paying the requested bribe and you can extort even more from him.
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Old Nov 26, 04, 3:18 pm   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by B747-437B
Delhi immigration openly asks you for bribes if they decide you are a suitable target. On one occasion, I spent over an hour in a side room at Delhi airport departures (traveling as an Indian citizen on an Indian passport) being shaken down by immigration officers who made it very clear that a "donation" could speed me on my way soon enough. I finally escaped once I mentioned the name of the AI airport manager at the time, an old family friend, who presumably has enough clout to get them in trouble.

Still, Mumbai and most of the other airports in India target mainly the labour traffic to exploit for bribes since they are naive travelers for the most part. Delhi on the other hand brazenly targets anybody. Swinging a posting to Delhi airport is one of the most expensive "donations" for immigration officers anyway, so this is their only way of recouping costs.

As for "sting operations", that is simply another way to shake down the poor travelers who get caught up in the web. Catch the guy red handed paying the requested bribe and you can extort even more from him.
It is ironic since the extorted face government extortion from such "sting operations" -- not so sophisticated in the case of the Indian government -- while the extortionists face little more than a slap on the hand (if that) as long as they surrender a little cash to the "higher ups". In any event, a US citizen should know that bribing a foreign government employee (even abroad) violates US law and specifically the FCPA.

I am glad to hear that the original poster's wife has gotten the visa re-issued. No harm can come of that -- as long as the consulate did its work properly.
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