7 Ways to Get a Green Card


A green card is a permanent resident card, and it allows you to live and work in the United States permanently. While it doesn’t make you a citizen, it does keep you safe from deportation and give you the right to move around the United States like anyone else who lives here.

It’s definitely one of the most coveted immigration statuses and serves as the goal for many. They also aren’t easy to get.

#1) Family-Based Green Cards

You can get these by being the spouse of a US citizen, the unmarried child of a US citizen who is under the age of 21 or the parent of a US citizen that is at least 21 years old. There are also some provisions for the brothers and sisters of US citizens who are at least 21 years old. 

If you’re the fiancée of a US citizen or have been married for less than 2 years you can get a conditional green card. 

#2) Employment-Based Green Cards

Most people who come to work in the US will get temporary employment visas, not green cards. Yet people with extraordinary abilities in certain fields, people with advanced degrees, or extremely skilled workers may be able to get green cards. 

While it isn’t technically a form of employment, an immigrant investor who is willing to put at least $1 million (or $500,000 in a targeted employment area) into a new company that will create at least 10 full time positions can also get a green card. 

#3) Special Immigrant Green Cards

There are several classes of “special immigrants.” These include religious workers, children who have been abused, neglected, or abandoned by a parent, certain Afghani or Iraqi nationals who were employed by certain branches of the US government, international broadcasters, and employees of certain international organizations.

#4) Refugee Green Cards

Obviously these are getting harder to get thanks to certain policies targeting refugees and asylum-seekers. Nevertheless, if you were admitted as a refugee or granted asylum status a year ago then you may be able to get a green card.

#5) Crime Victim Green Cards

People with T visas or U visas may be able to convert them into green cards with a little help from an immigration attorney. So can abuse victims if they are the abused spouse, child, or parent of a US Citizen.

#6) Registry Green Cards

If you’ve lived in the US continuously since before January 1, 1972 then you can register for a green card.

#7) Other Categories

Certain pieces of legislation have created an entire collection of green card categories that don’t fit everywhere else. These include diversity visas, Liberian Refugee Immigration Fairness beneficiaries, people who benefit from the Cuban Adjustment Act, people who benefit from the Haitian Refugee Immigration Fairness Act, a Lautenberg Parolee, an Indochinese Parole Adjustment Act beneficiary, a Native American born in Canada, a person born in the US to a foreign diplomat, or a foreign diplomat who was unable to return home.

Getting a Green Card isn’t Easy

Even if you fit neatly into any of these categories, getting your green card can be a real challenge. You’ll need a qualified immigration lawyer if you want to be successful at getting your permanent resident status. Contact Hykel Law today to get started.

See also: 

Can an Extramarital Affair Disqualify You For a Green Card?

New Laws for Green Card Holders in 2020

How to Get a Green Card for Your Fiancee


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Employment & Investment Visas

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Family Visas

Not knowing or understanding the system and laws of the U.S. can be a disadvantage for many foreign immigrants who wish to obtain permanent residency in the United States, either for themselves or for their loved ones. Hykel Law’s Family-Based Immigration Services can lead you through the complicated process to achieve either temporary or permanent residency, depending on your situation.


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Are you afraid of deportation? If you are a foreign national involved in the beginning stages of removal proceedings, the deportation attorney at Hykel Law in Philadelphia can help prevent this unfortunate situation. We can evaluate your immigration case and find the best strategy to defend you from removal proceedings to help you stay in the United States.

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