Most of us might have, in our life, fantasized about the American dream. Green Card always has become a dream for many and reality to some. But do we really know what does it require to be a Permanent Resident in the U.S? Let’s move on to the actual procedures to acquire a green card.
- Through Family
- Through Employment
- As a Special Immigrant
- Through Refugee or Asylee Status
- For Human Trafficking and Crime Victims
- For Victims of Abuse
- Through Other Categories
You can check the eligibility criteria in details from here.
Applying for Green Card
Any person who fulfils the eligibility criteria can apply and you don’t need to compulsorily be in the United States to apply.
- Someone usually must file an immigrant petition for you. In some cases, you may be eligible to file for yourself.
- After the petition gets approved by the USCIS, you file a green card application with USCIS or get a visa application with the U.S. Department of State.
- Then you will have your biometrics appointment to provide fingerprints, photos, and a signature.
- Then you have to attend an interview.
- You receive a decision on your application.
Process & Procedures
- Adjustment of Status
Adjustment of status is the process of applying for a Green Card when you are present in the United States. With this, you can get a Green card without returning back to your home country.
- Consular Processing
Once your immigrant petition has been approved and an immigrant visa number is immediately available to you, you can apply for Green card. Consul processing is when you’re out of the U.S. In this process you can visit the U.S. embassy and apply for an immigrant visa to come to the United States and be admitted as a permanent resident.
- Visa Availability & Priority Dates
The Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) allows an only limited number of green card each year for people having no immediate relatives as U.S. Citizens. So, the immigrant visa might not be available every time. Whereas, Immigrant visas for immediate relatives of U.S. citizens are unlimited, so they are always available.
- Travel Documents
USCIS issues four types of travel documents to apply without a visa. They are Advance parole, Refugee travel document, Re-entry permit and Carrier documentation.
- Employment Authorization Document
You need to have EAD, to make sure that you’re allowed to work in the U.S. for a specific time period.
- Finding a Medical Doctor
Medical examinations and vaccinations in the United States are typically required for anyone who files through the Adjust Status procedure.
- Affidavit of Support
An affidavit of support is a form that a sponsor files on your behalf when you are applying.
After receiving your green card
After you become a permanent resident you will receive your welcome notice from the mail. Then you will get your Green Card.
If your application is denied, you will receive a notice explaining why the decision in your case was declined.
The cost for the Green card will be $220 per person for the USCIS Immigrant Fee, $85 for Biometrics, $400-500 for Medical Exam fee and you have to pay $300 for the visa if your applying for one too.
Also to check about the process after winning EDV, check this article.