A lawful permanent resident of the United States is authorized to live and work in the United States on a permanent basis. The permanent resident card, also known as a "Green Card," serves as proof that the holder has been officially granted immigration benefits, which include permission to reside and work
in the US.
Obtaining permanent residence can be achieved in several ways. Perhaps the most common is through a relative. A U.S. citizen may "sponsor" a relative (spouse, parent, child, or sibling) to enter the U.S. as a permanent resident. A person can also obtain permanent resident status through employment, where the sponsor is one’s employer or oneself if he or she is a person of extraordinary ability. If the foreign national is sponsored for permanent residency through employment, the employer usually must show that there are no American workers available to perform the job duties of the position in question. Other paths to permanent residency include asylum, protection under the Violence Against Women Act, the diversity lottery, or by means of an "Investor Visa."
The process for obtaining permanent residency is complex and should not be attempted without legal assistance. For instance, certain criminal convictions may prevent the applicant from being eligible to secure permanent resident status in the US. Others who are present unlawfully because they either overstayed their visa or entered illegally may still qualify for permanent residency, depending upon their particular situations. In some cases, a mistake could cost several years and cost much more in fees to correct. It is always a good idea to consult with an immigration attorney.
In order to find out if you qualify to get lawful permanent resident status in the United States, please contact us for an appointment. The Law Office of Marcia Binder Ibrahim, LLC has over thirty five years of combined experience in helping foreign nationals obtain permanent residence status in the United States.
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