How to Get a Green Card
What is a Green Card?
A green card is a type of visa that allows a person to live permanently in the United States. They are also called "permanent visas." Every year, there are a limited number of green cards issued. There are also different subcategories of visas, based on the way in which the person immigrated to the U.S. For instance, there are marriage-based green cards, family petition-based green cards, and various others.
I Don’t Know How to Get a Green Card. Are There any Tips?
Some tips on how to get a green card include:
- Obtain a green card application (Form I-485) only from qualified government sources. Any fake or fraudulent documents and forms may prevent you from getting your green card
- Be sure to include all requested documents, such as green card photos, medical records, birth certificates, marriage certificates (if applicable), various bank statements, and any other requested information
- Pay the corresponding fees- your application may be denied or delayed if you fail to pay the accompanying fee and any other fees such as a biometrics (fingerprint) fee
- If you your status in the U.S. is questionable, or if you have a criminal record, you should speak with a lawyer before attempting to obtain a green card. Instead of getting a green card, your application might subject you to legal issues such as removal
If you don’t obtain a green card with your application, don’t panic. There may be other options available to you. For instance, some green card applications can be appealed. Or, you may be able to apply for an extension of your current visa, depending on what type of visa it is and your overall immigration record. Similarly, you may wish to contact a lawyer if you have questions about green card renewal.
Note that not all applicants are allowed to obtain a green card under immigration laws. For instance, a green card may not be available to persons who have certain types of criminal charges on their record, or who have recently been removed (deported) from the U.S.
Do I Need a Lawyer for Help with a Green Card Application?
Understanding how to get a green card can sometimes be challenging. You may need to hire a lawyer if you or a loved one of yours needs help with a green card application. Your attorney will be able to advise you on how to proceed with the application process. Also, your lawyer will be able to assist you if you need to attend an immigration interview or any immigration hearings.
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Last Modified: 07-16-2013 12:45 PM PDT
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