Top Ways To Get Permanent Residency (Green Card) In USA

 Hey! Are you checking for the best and easy ways for getting Green card? Then, you are in a right place. In this article I want clear all the doubts regarding Different ways or sources of getting GreenCards and a few common questions like:

  • What is a Green Card? 
  • How to apply for Green Card?
  • How to get Green card in the USA for students?
  • What is the eligibility for applying for Green Card?
  • How to get Green card through Family and Relatives?
  • What is Diversity Immigrant Visa Lottery?
  • How to get Green card through marriage?
  • How to get Green Card through Employment offer?

green card

What is a GreenCard?

A Green card is the permanent residence card that allows you to stay and work in the United States legally. It’s not a citizenship but a permanent residence card. You are required to stay in UnitedStates at least 6 months in a year to withhold your Green Card Status. You might lose your green card status if you stay more than 12 months outside the united states. 

How does a GreenCard Looks like?

green card

Generally, We can apply for the Green card based on the types of visas. visas are of two types.

  • Immigrant visa.
  • Non-immigrant visa.

Green cards come under immigrant visa category. Obtaining a green card allows the people to stay in united states permanently. Green cards are typically valid for 10 years and should be renewed prior to expiration with valid proof. You still remain as a legal permanent resident even though your green card expires. But always renew the green card before its expiration.

How to apply for A Green Card?

Generally, Everyone asks me one common question about the green card that is How to apply for Greencard? If you are applying for the green card from outside of the united states, then At first you should possess an immigrant visa. After receiving the immigrant visa, then you are eligible to enter the UnitedStates and apply for the green card based on your profile. If you are already in the united states, then you must wait until a visa number is available to you. Before applying for the green card check whether you satisfy all the requirements of applying for a Green Card.

How to get Green card in the USA for students?

Generally, It takes very long time to the students in the USA to get a Green Card. As they possess non-immigrant student visa status. So, At first, the non-immigrant status must be converted to immigrant visa status. Their visa must be Changed from F1 student visa to H1B working visa. Then they are eligible for applying for a Green card. Check the more information on H1B working visa.

Categories Of Green Card

Before applying for a green card you should determine to which category you are eligible for applying for a green card. AS each Green Card category will have specific steps to follow. For example, If you apply for a green card while you are in the United States, This process is known as “adjustment of status”. If you apply for the green card outside the United States then the process is known as “consular processing”.

Eligibility For Applying To A GreenCard

Till now, We have seen the categories of Greencard Now, Let us discuss the eligibility for applying to a Greencard. You are eligible to apply for a green card (permanent residence) through various ways.

  • Your family.
  • Employment offer.
  • Diversity Immigrant Visa Lottery.
  • Refugee or asylum status.

So, If you are eligible for one of the immigrant categories established in the Immigration and Nationality Act then, you are eligible for applying to a Greencard.

How To Get A Green card through Family?

Green card preferences through family is again classified into two types

  • Immediate Relative Family.
  • Family Based Greencard preferences.

Immediate relative family category

The immediate relative family category has short waiting times. Your relative should submit a visa petition that establishes that you are a qualifying relative.

Marriage to U.S Citizen:

How to get Green card through marriage? This is one of the most interesting questions everyone has. Usually, we get USA GreenCard when we marry the citizen of UnitedStates. The wait times are very short for marriage cases, i.e. if you marry a U.S citizen the wait time is approximately 5 months from the beginning of the case by the time u get the green card in your hands.

Parents of U.S Citizen:

Parents of U.S citizen can apply for green card and applicants under this category will have very less waiting time for approval and will be around 5 to 6 months.

Family-based green card preference:

Family-based green card preference is not given immediate preference and has more waiting time for approval when compared to the immediate relative family category.

Following relations come under family-based green card preference.

  • Unmarried sons and daughters of united states citizens whose age is greater than 21 years.
  • Relatives of green card holders (Lawfull permanent residents) like Spouse or child of a greencard holder.
  • Married son or daughter of an American citizen.
  • Brother or Sister of the Unites States citizens.

How To Get Green Card Through Employment OR Job Offer?

Most Employment-based green card categories require an employer to get a labour certification and then file a Form I-140, Immigrant Petition for the employee. It is important to note that most people who are in a line for a green card must possess a temporary status to work while waiting for the green card. As waiting for a green card does not give you any legal status to stay in united states until you get to the i-485 stage.

Generally, Most of the people who are in H1-B work visa category, simultaneously apply for a green card based on their job. Some people who are in L1-A or L1-B can also apply for a green card. But the first preference is given to the highly skilled people. So, they don’t have to wait for a long time to obtain greencard. 

Categories of Employment Based GreenCard

Decades ago congress created five different categories from which a foreign national can obtain a green card status. A certain number of foreign nationals and their dependents can obtain green card status through each category per fiscal year. Congress also created a country quota for people who born in china, India, Mexico and Philippines and these countries quotas further limit available green cards that can be obtained through each employment based category. 


EB1 is given to the people who have extraordinary ability. They belong to top 5 % of their field. EB1 also includes outstanding professors and researchers who have international experience in their field. Multinational transferred managers and executives also come under this category.


This category comprises of professionals who have exceptional ability or advanced degree and who are in a job that requires a master’s degree or higher. An advertisement is required for this process. Before you take the job permanently, There should be an advertisement that no one is available or qualified to do it in the existing geographic area. Generally, ads are displayed in the local paper. This advertising is called perm labour certification process.

There are other types of green cards in this category.

EB2 National interest waiver green card:

  • This is for someone who is working in science doing medical research or Nanotechnology or environmental work like alternative sources of energy or sustainable sources of energy or engineers working on recycled materials to build stronger and better roads, bridges etc. It is important for united states because it is of national interest and no perm labour certification process (advertising) is needed. Its is also termed as national interest waiver.
  • The United states government is waiving the requirement to advertise so that you can get the green card faster.
  • EB2 category can also be filled with Someone who is a multinational executive or manager.


It is the most common and popular category because it comprises the majority of foreign nationals. EB3 includes professional workers where the position requires a bachelor’s degree or higher or Someone who is an outstanding professor or a researcher. It has the longest waiting time. It also quotes skilled workers and other workers. Also includes nurses, physical therapists, It could be anybody from in-home caregiver to a chef. 


This category is for special immigrant workers like victims under the violence against the women act, permanent religious workers for religious organisations in the united states.     


This is an Employment based green card category for investors who invest at least 500K USD into either regional centre project i.e. governed by the government or rural (Un-employment) areas with high unemployment rate. If you want to invest in any other types of business you need to have at least 1 Million capital in USD ready. You get the green card for 2 years which is conditional and then eventually you need to prove that you hired at least 10 U.S citizens or U.S residents who are working for full time. 

Diversity (DV) Immigrant Visa Lottery:

If you do not have a million dollars or if you do not have an employer to sponsor or if you do not have a family member to sponsor, then there is only on way you can apply for a green card. It is known as Diversity visa lottery. 

green card

What is Diversity Immigrant Visa Lottery?

This is run by the department of the USA to bring the people into the USA to reflect the diversity of united states to all the nations of the world. This lottery happens every year. It is a simple procedure and you can apply for free in online. There are several companies and website which offer you to get a diversity visa and most of them are scam or fake. There is only one website where you can apply and that website is run by the Government of United States. It opens on October of every fiscal year and ends by November of that year.

Asylum/ Refugee immigrant status:

What is Refugee immigrant status? This category is for people who fled their countries for fear of their life due to political, religious, or other beliefs that subject them to prosecution and other ill-treatment. There are more humanitarian ways of entering united states.

Hence, these are the different ways to get a permanent residence(Greencard) in the UnitedStates. Hope this article is helpful to you and stay tuned to AmericaMasters!

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