How do I Get a Green Card?
You may remember the romantic comedy (1990) feature film, “Green Card.” A young American woman enters into a marriage of convenience so that a Frenchman can attain his green card. Having a family member or fiancé petition for your green card is one way to become a permanent resident.
The most common ways to get a green card are through:
- a family member (parent, child, sibling, or fiancé)
- a job (typically, a high level professional position)
- political asylum or as a refugee
When you follow the links for each way to get a green card, you will find more detailed information about how to get a green card for each category.
Green card benefits
Green cards are small laminated cards with the permanent resident’s photograph and fingerprints. They are very powerful because the benefits are significant. The green card indicates that the holder is a “permanent resident,” having the right to live and work in the United States. You also have the right to be protected under the laws of your state and locale of residence. It also serves as a reentry document, meaning that the holder has the right to reenter the United States after a short absence without providing additional documentation. It is significant to note that a permanent resident or green card holder is not a U.S. citizen. And, thereby, does not have all the rights associated with citizenship such as voting in national elections.
Who makes these green card rules?
Although you’ve likely heard of “INS” and seen references to it on television, the INS was dissolved in 2003. All immigration matters are under the jurisdiction of the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS.) The USCIS is an agency under the Department of Homeland Security.
Where to get help getting a green card
If you have questions regarding obtaining a green card and becoming a permanent resident, be sure to consult with a qualified immigration attorney. Immigration is a very specialized area of law; be sure your attorney focuses his or her practice on immigration and getting green cards.
We focus our practice on immigration law and help people just like you. You are not alone. Your next step is to contact our office: 513-791-1673 or Thomasjr@geygan.com. We will gently walk you through the green card process. In addition we explain immigration issues such as how to get a green card, represent you in front of the Department of State as needed, and aggressively fight for your legal rights.