Green cards allow individuals who are not United States citizens to gain permanent residence in the country. Green cards are also sometimes called permanent resident cards. Applying for a green card has many benefits. It gives you the opportunity to work and live in the United States and after three to five years, you can even apply to become a United States citizen. If you are about to start the application process, our Chicago green card lawyer can help.
There are two processes for applying for a green card. One is used by people who are applying from within the country while another is used by people who are applying from outside of the United States.
If you are eligible for a green card through your family, have been selected for a diversity visa, or are already in the United States on a non-immigrant visa, you must use Form I-485. This form is known as the Application to Adjust Status. If you are not in the country when you apply, you must use the Immigrant Visa Electronic Application, which is Form DS-260.
Depending on where you are applying from and the type of green you are applying for, the green card process can take anywhere from a few months to several years.
If you are a spouse or immediate relative of a United States citizen and you are within the country, you can apply through an adjustment of status. The process will take between 12 and 22 months. If you are a relative but not an immediate relative, or a spouse of someone who has a green card, the process typically takes two or more years.
If you are applying from outside of the country and are a spouse or immediate relative of a United States citizen, the wait is usually 13 to 15 months. All other categories have country caps placed on them and the wait times dramatically vary.
There are many different types of green cards and the one that is right for you will depend on your own personal situation. The different types are as follows:
Our Chicago green card lawyer can advise on which type is right for you and guide you through the process so no mistakes are made and you are successful with your application.
Applying for a green card is your first step to entering or remaining in the United States. The process, though, is extremely complex and requires patience, as well as an intricate knowledge of the immigration system in the country. At Sverdloff Law Group, our Chicago green card lawyer can advise on all aspects of your case to ensure you are successful with your case. Call us now at 312-238-9090 or contact us online to schedule a consultation with our seasoned attorney.