The Green Card Application Process

Immigrating to the United States is a tricky process and every aspect of your immigration must be meticulously carried out. One of the most common aspects of immigration law is applying for a green card. However, before one can apply for a green card, they must meet stringent criteria and this is where an immigration attorney – or a green card attorney – comes in handy. With their specialized knowledge, a green card attorney will be able to assist you with your immigration needs.

Green Card Process

In order to apply for a green card, you must either have family who can sponsor your green card or you must have permanent residency. Both of these you can seek out during the green card process.

  • File the appropriate forms – to file for a green card, the form that must be filled out is the I-130, also referred to as the Petition for an Alien Relative. If you are unsure how to fill this form out a green card attorney can help make sure that you have not missed any aspect of the form. If the form is not filled out completely, it can affect the status of your application.
  • Provide Documentation – A family member with a green card must present this in order to sponsor your green card application. This means that your family member has been granted permanent residency and is able to sponsor your arrival in the US. They must also provide proof – such as a birth certificate or a marriage license that proves you are indeed, family.
  • Name Change Documents – these should be filed for you and for any of your relatives who are immigrating into the US.

Filling out the form is only one part of the process. Once the form is filled out, you then have to decide which preference category you will be applying under. There are five different preference categories that you can choose from, each one designed for different qualifying family members.

  • Preference Category #1 – This is for adult children who are over the age of 21 and not married.
  • Preference Category #2A – Spouse of a person holding a green card or a child that is under the age of 21.
  • Preference Category #2B – Children over the age of 21 and unmarried of any permanent residents.
  • Preference Category #3 – A married child of any age group who has a parent that is a U.S. Citizen.
  • Preference Category #4 – Siblings of a US Resident.

When you have chosen your preference, or have had your green card attorney help choose your preference, you will be able to begin the filing process. Your attorney will be able to offer you any information that you request and can even provide you with an estimated date that you will receive your green card – depending on the date schedule that is given under U.S. immigration law.

Having an immigration lawyer on your side can make the difference as to whether your status is approved or not, making them a critical component in your immigration to the US.

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