Legal Permanent Resident (Green Card)
There are several different ways to become a Legal Permanent Resident, the following are the most common ways:
Who can Sponsor (Petition for) a Family Member for Legal Permanent Residence
United States Citizens who are 21 years of age can petition
- Married or single children over the age of 21
- Single children under age 21
- Brothers and Sisters
Lawful Permanent Residents can petition
- Unmarried sons or daughters
Who Cannot Sponsor (Petition for) a Family Member for Legal Permanent Residence?
Who can become a Legal Permanent Resident through an Employer?
- People with Extraordinary Ability
- Outstanding Professors/Researchers
- Advanced Degree Professionals
- Exceptional Ability
- Professionals with Bachelor’s Degrees
- Skilled Workers (two years training)
- Other Workers (unskilled)
- Special Immigrants (religious workers)
- Immigrant Investors
VICTIM OF VIOLENCE/CRIME
To qualify for you must show:
- that you have suffered substantial physical or mental abuse from certain criminal activity* in the US;
- that you possess information concerning the criminal activity;
- that you assisted government officials in the investigation; and
- the criminal activity violated US law or occurred in the US.
Violence Against Women’s Act
The Violence Against Women’s Act or VAWA allows an abused spouse or child of a U.S. Citizen or Lawful Permanent Resident or an abused parent of a U.S. Citizen to self-petition for lawful status in the United States, receive employment authorization and access public benefits benefits. VAWA provides domestic violence survivors with the means that are essential to escaping violence and establishing safe, independent lives.
If you have been a victim of domestic violence by an abusive spouse who is a US Citizen or Green Card holder, you may qualify for residency through VAWA.