Green Card

There are many ways for a foreign national to apply for permanent residence here in the U.S., whether through a job offer, through aslyee status, or refugee status. In this article, the discussions will focus on family-based green cards, as it is one of our firm's primary practice areas.

First thing first, you need to have a qualifying family relationship before you can apply for permanent residence. The establishment of this qualifying family relationship is through the filing of Form I-130, Petition for Alien Relative.


A U.S. citizen may petition for a spouse, an unmarried child under 21 years of age, or a parent (if the U.S. citizen is 21 years of age or older). These are known as "immediate relatives."


A U.S. citizen may petition for an unmarried son/daughter over 21 years of age, a married son/daughter (any age), or a sibling. This family preference category also allows a lawful permanent resident to petition for a spouse, an unmarried child under 21 years of age, or an unmarried son/daughter 21 years of age or older.

Depending on the qualifying family relationship, the foreign national's visa/immigration status, your foreign national family member can apply for the green card through (1) adjustment of status or (2) consular processing.


Adjustment of status involves a process where an applicant applies for lawful permanent residence while being in the U.S. 


Consular processing involves a process where an applicant applies for an immigrant visa (green card) through a U.S. embassy or consulate in a foreign country. 

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Breaking News

There is currently a nationwide injunction prohibiting both U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) and Department of State (DOS) from implementing its public charge rules during the pandemic. Litigation is unpredictable. Applicants, especially those with weak public charge cases, should take advantage of this window and submit adjustment of status packets/consular processing packets while the injunction is in effect.