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How to Obtain a Green Card in U.S.

How to Obtain a Green Card in U.S.

Generally, most immigrants come to live permanently in the United States of America with the help of a family member’s funding, employment or a job proposal and there are several ways a permanent residence, called “Green Card” can be received:  the “K non-immigrant”, the “Diversity immigrant visa program”, the “legal immigration family equity”, the “special immigrant juvenile”.

Our immigration lawyers in the US can provide all the legal support needed in order to obtain the Green Card in the USA. This is also known as the residence permit in the USA. If you are interested in obtaining a residence permit in a different country, for example in Spain, don’t hesitate to get in touch with our partners who are experts in immigration matters in SpainImmigrate-Spain.com.

 Quick Facts  
  Types of U.S. visas that can lead to permanent residency (YES/NO) U.S. visas are divided into non-immigrant and immigrant visas. The second type allows for peramanent immigration to USA


Possibility of obtaining a Green Card based
on employment

YES, employment is one of the easiest ways of obtaining
a Green Card

Possibility of obtaining a Green Card based on family-reunification

It is possible to obtain a Green Card through a fiance
or spouse visa
Living requirements for obtaining a Green Card

Depending on the entry option, a Green Card can be obtained after minimum 3 years, but usually after 5 years of residency

Green Card Lottery requirements There are no special requirements to enter the Green Card Lottery. Applications must usually be submitted between October and November of the current year
Possibility to sponsor family members as a Green Card holder (YES/NO) YES, you can sponsor family members to join you if you are a Green Card holder


Rights attached to being a Green Card holder

Legal right to live and work in the USA indefinitely, access to government jobs (usually reserved for US citizens only), access to education, healthcare, social benefits

Conditional residency
in USA
Conditional residency allows a foreign citizen to live and work in the USA for 2 years after which he/she can apply for a
10-year Green Card
Green Card validity A Green Card has a 10-year validity period
Green Card renewal requirements The Green Card must be renewed 6 months prior to expiration
Special requirements for obtaining a Green Card based on country of origin (YES/NO) There are no special requirements applicable based on country of origin. All applications will be subject to the same verifications
Possibility to acquire a Green Card through investment (YES/NO) YES, through the EB-5 visa
Access to citizenship after becoming a
Green Card holder
3 years through marriage, 5 years through naturalization
Assistance in obtaining
a Green Card
YES, our immigration lawyers in Miami can help you apply for a Green Card
Other services available (YES/NO) YES, assistance in applying for Green Card through investment or by other means, support in renewing a Green Card and removal of the conditional status, assistance in applying for US citizenship

Types of visa in U.S.

The k non-immigrant visa for fiancé(e)of U.S. citizens and their minor children (K-1 and K-2 visas) were produced to speed up the immigration procedure for such persons so they could pass through more quickly to the United States.

U.S. citizen fiancé(e) needs to complete the I-129F Form, “Petition for Alien Fiancé”, for her future spouse.
The diversity immigrant visa program (DIV) makes up to 55,000 immigrant visas accessible yearly, strained from arbitrary assortment along with all entries to people who are from nations with low rates of immigration to the U.S., called “The Green Card Lottery”. To obtain the DIV visa the individual needs to fill up the I-485 Form.

Legal immigration family equity enables certain persons who are present in the U.S. who would not usually meet the criteria needed for adjustment of position in the United States to get a green card visa, regardless of:

•    Failing to constantly continue legalized status since admission;
•    The way they entered the U.S.;
•    Working in America without an authorization.

To meet the criteria for this stipulation you must be the receiver of a labor documentation application (Form ETA 750) or immigrant visa petition (Forms I-130 or I-140, filed on or before 30 of 2001.
The special immigrant juvenile (SIJ) proposes to help overseas children in the U.S., who have been abandoned, mistreated or abused.

A special category of children who are not capable to be reunited with the parents can get a SIJ green card visa. All children who obtain a green card through the SIJ program get the chance to live and also work permanently in the United States of America.

To obtain this kind of green card in USA the individuals need to file for the I-360 Form. You can obtain a residence permit in USA in numerous different ways and most persons are sponsored by family or by an employer in the U.S

Other people may become permanent residents all the way through refugee or asylum status or other charitable programs and in some cases they may be qualified to file for them.

The green card lottery in U.S. in 2024

Our team of immigration lawyers in USA can provide all necessary guidance for every individual in order to get a residence permit in USA (green card visa)in 2024 if he wants to apply online for the “Green Card Lottery”.

Here are the important steps of the process:

•    online check for qualifying;
•    the administrative fee payment;
•    registration number and password for the online account;
•    photo uploading.

If all these steps are accomplished the individuals will have the possibility to check via internet if they won the “diversity visa green card”.

As a reminder, all winners will finally be announced and guided on email by the United States government how to file the formal Visa application without any other taxes.

If an individual is incapable to qualify for family, refugee or work visa in the U.S., this is the only alternative they have to immigrate to the United States of America.  While luck is for certain a key factor in the primary draw, numerous important elements that touch the applicant’s chances of winning a residence permit in USA (the green card) can be controlled. Based on this card, you can obtain USA citizenship.

Procedure of Filing for the Green Card in USA in 2024

A green card, also known as a permanent resident card, in the U.S. represents a permanent visa for the U.S. It offers the holder the status of a permanent resident with legal right to be employed in the country. After becoming a U.S. green card holder, the U.S. citizenship can be acquired after a few years of residing in the country. 

A foreign citizen can become a green card holder in the U.S. in various ways, some of the most common ones being becoming an employee in a U.S. company or through a family member who is a citizen of the U.S. or a permanent resident here. 

The procedure of filing for the green card in USA in 2024, generally involves the following four steps.

1.    Filing for labor certification (only for employers)

Prior to contacting the immigration authorities in Miami about obtaining a green card for a foreign employee, the employer has to undertake an advertising and recruitment procedure, consequently not be able to find a U.S. employee who is qualified, wants and is available to occupy the same position. After that, the employer has to file a labor certification demand with the Department of Labor in the U.S.

2.    Filing an initial visa application

As the second step of the procedure of filing for the green card in Miami, this is the stage when the employer or relative begins the procedure of discussing with the immigration authorities in the U.S. through filing an application for a visa on the foreign citizen’s behalf. An immigration attorney in the US can provide more details on this matter.

3.    Wait until a visa is attainable

For visas that have a limited number per year, the visa candidate has to wait until the priority date appears on a waiting list.

4.    Filing for the green card

Finally, the foreign citizen can submit the application for the green card in the U.S. This might take up to several months, depending on where the application is made. The application can be made either at an USCIS (United States Citizenship and Immigration Services) or at a consulate of the U.S. in the applicant’s country of residence. 

US immigration lawyer can assist you to ensure everything runs smoothly and there are no issues along the process of filing for the green card in Miami. Here’s an infographic on this subject:

Procedure of Filing for the Green Card in USA in 2022

Q & A about the Green Card in the U.S.

Can I obtain the green card in the U.S. if my family members are citizens of the country?

In case you are aged under 21 and your parents are U.S. citizens, or if your wife or husband, or children over 21 years old, are citizens of the U.S., you qualify as an immediate relative. This means that, if your relative who is a U.S. citizen wants to petition for you and engage to financially support you, you can be eligible for the green card in USA.

What are the categories of a green card in the U.S.?

The main categories of a green card in Miami, U.S. are:

•    Green card through a job;
•    Green card through family;
•    Green card through asylee or refugee status;
•    Other types of green cards. Our immigration attorneys in USA can provide more details on what these types of green cards can consist of.

What are the advantages of a green card in the U.S.?

green card in Miami, U.S.:

•    Enables you to obtain official immigration status in the U.S.;
•    Gives you certain rights, as well as responsibilities;
•    Allows you to apply for the U.S. naturalization.

We can assist you with the application for USA citizenship.

Taxation for Green Card Holders

Even if you have not become a citizen of the U.S., it might be required for you to pay taxes for green card holders in the country. The U.S. government rules that all “tax residents” should file their tax return. If you are a green card holder in the U.S., you are considered a tax resident.

Tax residents in the U.S. have to report their entire income worldwide to the U.S. Internal Revenue Service (IRS). Even when part or the entire income was gained from businesses or investments from overseas, a tax resident has to report it entirely. However, it does not necessarily imply that the government of the country will impose taxation for the worldwide income of green card holders.

Procedure of filing for taxation for green card holders in the U.S.

For green card holders, the general procedures for filing the income, estate and gift tax returns, as well as paying estimated taxation are the same as for U.S. citizens. Furthermore, a green card holder is usually taxed the same as U.S. citizens. 

Similarly, green card holders in the U.S. can enjoy the same filing statuses, exemptions, deductions and credits as U.S. citizens.

Taxations rules for green card holders in the U.S. tend to be quite complex and they are not easy to comprehend even for U.S. citizens, therefore we recommend you to hire an immigration lawyer in Miami to assist you in this regards.

When does a green card holder become a tax resident in the U.S.?

A green card holder automatically becomes a tax resident in the U.S. starting with the year when he or she becomes a permanent resident of the country. Therefore, the green card holder has to declare his or her worldwide income to the IRS, unless he or she applied to be treated as a resident of a foreign state under an income tax treaty. 

What is the green card was surrendered or abandoned?

Losing the permanent resident status does not automatically imply that the holder stops being a U.S. tax resident. Before being exempt from filing the tax returns in the U.S., the person in question might have to announce the Department of Homeland Security that he or she no longer has the permanent resident status or that he or she is surrendering the green card, maybe having to submit a form with the IRS. A US immigration lawyer can provide more details on this situation.

How to obtain a Green Card through employment

For individuals looking to work in the United States, there are a few different visa choices. Depending on the kind of employment and the circumstances, a specific visa may be necessary. As a result, each instance needs to be evaluated separately. Qualifications, citizenship, the intended period of stay, and company affiliation or corporate constellation are important considerations when choosing a work visa.

The most prevalent nonimmigrant visa categories are those given out for short-term employment in the USA. You must apply for an immigrant visa (Green Card) in one of the following categories if you want to live and work permanently in the United States:

  • you get a job offer for a role that few Americans are qualified to fill, case in which the employer must complete an application and complete the application process with USCIS and the Department of Labor;
  • for creating new jobs in the USA, entrepreneurs and investors are eligible for the Green Card;
  • through the “Aliens with Extraordinary Ability” or the “National Interest Waiver” options.

These last two options imply several types of immigrant visas, also known as self-petitioning visas. People with exceptional abilities can apply this way.

Our immigration lawyer in Miami can offer support in applying for a Green Card through employment.

Green Card immigration through family reunification

Family reunification is one of the oldest ways of obtaining a Green Card in the United States. Those who marry US nationals, Green Card holders, or their close relatives are also eligible for the status. Cases, however, are treated on an individual basis. This means that not all candidates are also granted this status.  Additionally, there is a waiting period that candidates must experience until a Green Card becomes available, and it can vary depending on the category.

Here are the eligible categories of applicants for Green Card applications by family reunion:

  •  a U.S. citizen’s spouse;
  • children of a U.S. citizen who are under 21 years old and unmarried;
  • adult parents of a citizen of the United States;
  • a relative of an American citizen.

In the category of relatives of American citizens enter the following:

  •  21 or older unmarried and married son or daughter of a citizen of the United States;
  • a U.S. citizen’s brother or sister who is at least 21 years old;
  • relatives of permanent residents, such as a spouse and their children who are under the age of 21.

Fiancés and widowers of American citizens are also eligible to apply for U.S. Green Cards.

We remind you that for each category of applicants specific requirements apply, including for their relatives who must sponsor them. You can count on our immigration law firm in the US for information and assistance in reuniting with your relatives here.

Obtaining a Green Card as an investor

At the moment, the EB-5 direct investor program allows foreign entrepreneurs to obtain Green Cards by investing up to USD 500,000 by starting their own businesses and creating 10 full-time jobs. However, the program is currently undergoing modifications and in the future, it may imply a higher investment (USD 900,000 is the amount vehiculated).

Our immigration lawyer who pays attention to such changes can offer updated information. However, this is a great way to move to the United States and have a stable source of income.
Each immigration pathway comes with its own requirements and advantages, and among the latter, access to U.S. citizenship is one of the most important.

No matter the way you decide to relocate to the United States, our lawyers are at your disposal with tailored services.

More details on the Green Cards awarded in U.S. are available below: 

When to change/renew a green card in Miami?

According to the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), a permanent or conditional resident in Miami must replace his or her green card in Miami when:

•    His or her previous card was lost, stolen, damaged or destroyed;
•    The card was granted before the resident was 14 years of age and he or she is now 14 years old (except if the card expires before the resident’s 16th birthday);
•    He or she has been a commuter and is now establishing residence inside the U.S. – one of our immigration attorneys in Miami can provide further details on this matter;
•    The resident has resided inside the U.S. and wants now to become a commuter;
•    His or her status has been automatically transformed to a permanent resident status – including Special Agricultural Worker applicants who transform their status to the permanent resident one. A
•   The person in question has an anterior version of the foreign citizen registration card which is invalid to prove his or her immigration status and now is obliged to substitute it with a current green card;
•    The card contains incorrect details;
•    The resident has legally changed his or her name or certain biographic data since he or she received the initial card; and
•    The permanent or conditional resident has never gotten the initial card issued by the USCIS.

Permanent residents are required to renew their green cards in Miami if their 10 year expiry date has come up or if their green cards will expire within the following six months. 

Here is how to renew a green card in Miami:

•    Submit the online Application to Replace Permanent Resident Card;
•    File the Application to Replace Permanent Resident Card via email. Our Miami immigration attorneys can provide more details on what this application consists of.

Miami green card renewal when abroad

In case the resident is out of the U.S. and his or her green card will expire in the following maximum six months, and the resident has the intention of returning to the country in maximum one year from the date of his leave from the U.S., he or she has to file for the renewal of a green card in USA at the time of his or her return into the country.

If the U.S. resident is abroad at the green card expiration date and he or she has not applied for the card renewal before he or she left the country, he or she has to contact the closest U.S. Consulate, U.S. port of entry or USCIS office prior to trying to file the Application to Replace Permanent Resident Card via email for the green card renewal in Miami.

Appeal in case of application denial in Miami

If a person needs to renew a green card in Miami and the renewal application is denied, the resident will be sent a letter which will indicate the reasons for the denial. The appeal of a denial is not allowed, however the renewal applicant can file a motion of reconsidering with the office which made the denial. Through submitting this type of motion, the person in question can require the USCIS to reexamine or reconsider the denial decision.

The motion of reopening has to declare the new factors provided if the case is reopened and it has to include the suitable documentary proof. Such a motion should establish that the initial denial decision was incorrect according to the law of immigration policy in the U.S. and also that the decision was incorrect based on the proof provided at the time of the initial renewal application. 

If you have to renew your green card, please get in touch with our immigration lawyers in Miami. They will provide all the necessary information and ensure the renewal application will be a successful one.

Assistance in obtaining a Green Card in Miami in 2024

Foreign citizens who want to apply for Green Cards in Miami in 2024 can rely on the entire support of our lawyers. They will help you immigrate here based on your country of residence.

It is useful to note that the procedure of obtaining a US Green Card by relocating to Miami has not changed at the level of 2024 compared to previous years, however, you need to comply with various requirements which can be explained by our specialists.

If you have any questions on how to obtain a Miami Green Card in 2024, do not hesitate to ask for details from our immigration lawyers.

The Miami immigration attorneys are specialized in a wide range of green card visas, so please feel free to get in touch with our team. They can also assist you with all the immigration procedures in case you are considering marrying a Cuban in USA.  We offer tailored advice on how to obtain a residence permit in USA.

How to Become a Sponsor of a Green Card Applicant in Miami

If you are a U.S. citizen or a green card holder (a lawful permanent resident) and you submit a petition to the U.S. government for a family member to receive a green card, you must also consent to sponsor the green card applicant in Miami financially. We can also assist with the application for obtaining the residence permit in USA.

The I-864 Form

The I-864 Form, also called the Affidavit of Support, is a legally binding contract between a U.S. citizen or green card holder (a sponsor) and the government of the U.S. The “consideration” of the contract is the immigrant’s intention to become a permanent resident in the U.S. Our US immigration attorneys can further explain the details of this contract.

The form has to prove that you as the sponsor, are able to become a sponsor for the green card applicant in Miami, meaning that you dispose of enough income and/or assets to support the intending immigrant and the rest of your family at 125% of the Federal Poverty Guidelines. The percentage is lower, to 100%, if you are on active duty in the U.S. Armed Forces and the person is your spouse or unmarried child under 21 years of age.

The presentation below offers more details on this subject: 

In the I-864 Form, you will have to prove not only that your income and assets are substantial enough in order to avoid that the immigrant should become a public charge, but also that you assume the responsibility of paying back the government if the immigrant at some stage claims certain public assistance benefits. 

We can also guide you through the procedure of obtaining USA citizenship.

End of the sponsor’s obligations in Miami

When you sign the I-864 Form, you enter into an enforceable contract with the government of the U.S. Your obligations as a sponsor of the green card applicant in Miami end only in the following cases:

•    The immigrant has become a citizen of the U.S.;
•    The green card petitioner has earned 40 work quarters in the country (approximately ten years as stated by the Social Security Administration);
•    The permanent residency applicant died; or
•    He or she permanently departed from the U.S. 

According to the I-864 Form, in case of divorce, you still have to sponsor the green card applicant in Miami.

Here are some of the general steps that anyone can take to immigrate to the USA. Each green card category has its own process and processes.

If you are already in the United States when you decide that you qualify for permanent resident status, you should apply for an adjustment of status from temporary visa resident to permanent residence. When requesting a green card to immigrate to the US from outside the country, you may do it through the consular processing method in 2024.

We can guide foreign citizens in applying for USA citizenship.

Exceptions to the sponsor obligations in Miami

In certain cases, the applicant will not have to be financially sustained. These cases include the following circumstances:

•    If the applicant has already legally worked in the U.S. for 40 quarters, maybe by being previously a nonimmigrant visa holder or by previously being issued a work permit;
•    If the applying married partner already has worked 40 quarters during the time he or she was married to the sponsor; or
•    If the green card candidate is a child who will be granted the U.S. citizenship straightaway after his or her arrival or entry inside the country for a green card.

In any of these circumstances, the green card applicant will have to file a form called I-864W to declare the exception.

You can rely on our attorneys if you want to immigrate to the USA. We are committed to providing the best immigration outcomes. No matter what kind of visa or stay permit you want to apply for, you can rely on us. Please feel free to get in touch with us and ask any questions you may have about your moving alternatives. Relocating to USA might be simple, particularly if you have the required credentials. You can move here for a variety of reasons, including work, business, and family ties. You must be careful when selecting your selection, though, as each has specific conditions that must be met.

Green Card issuance statistics

A recent analysis indicates that a noteworthy 55% of employment-based (EB) green cards granted in the US in 2022 were given to family members. According to a survey published by an institute, 55% of all EB green cards were awarded to family members, with competent workers receiving the remaining 45% of the total. This distribution has not changed in the last few years. Congress set a yearly cap of 140,000 EB green cards; but, in 2022, the government granted 270,284 green cards, using the green cards that were left over from other categories. Thus, about 60,000 more green cards were issued.

1.02 million green card applications were received by the US in 2022, a 37.6% increase over 2021. There were 12.7 million legal permanent residents in the US as of January 2023.

Please contact  one of our immigration lawyers in the United States for further information on how to obtain a green card in USA.