Green Card FAQ

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About the United States Permanent Resident Card

The United States permanent resident card, also known as the green card, allows an individual to reside permanently in the United States. You may be eligible for a green card through several avenues including your family, your job, your marriage, and other ways. As a green card holder, an individual has the legal right to work and live in the U.S. and also receives certain health and educational benefits. Continue reading to learn more about green cards, and if you are interested in speaking to an immigration attorney, contact the team at Zohar Law PLLC in Manhattan today for a free consultation.

What Ways May I Be Eligible to Get a United States Green Card?

There are many ways that an individual may be eligible to apply for a U.S. green card. Some of the most common include:

  • Through your family

  • Through your job

  • Through your finance or spouse

  • Through refugee or asylee status

  • Through special immigration juvenile status

  • Through the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA)

What Requirements Do I Need to Meet to Get a Green Card?

The requirements to obtain a green card will vary depending on the avenue in which you are attempting to apply. For example, requirements will be different for someone applying for a family-based green card than someone who applies through asylee status. You can learn more about the requirements for green cards by scheduling a consultation with the immigration law team at Zohar Law in NYC.

Can I Work in the U.S. While I Wait for My Green Card?

This depends. If you currently hold a United States visa that allows you to work in the country, then you may do so while you wait to obtain your green card. If you do not currently hold a visa that allows you to work in the U.S., you’ll have to apply for a work permit. Work permits take, on average, five to seven months to arrive after applying.

How Long Do I Have to Hold a Green Card Before I Can Apply for Citizenship?

Once you hold a green card, you will have to wait between three to five years to apply for citizenship through the naturalization process. The standard is five years. However, some green card holders such as those with a U.S. spouse can apply after three.

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Marriage Green Card FAQ

How Long Do I Have to Be Married to Be Eligible for a Green Card?

You may apply for a green card immediately after your marriage is official.

Why Are There Conditions on My Marriage Green Card?

If you have been married for less than two years when you apply for your green card through marriage, you will be issued a conditional green card. After the two year period is complete, you can apply to have these conditions removed.

My Fiance Lives Abroad. How Can They Come to America Legally for Us to Get Married?

If you are engaged to someone who lives abroad and you would like to get married in the United States, your fiance may be eligible for a K-1 Fiance Visa. This temporary visa allows your fiance to come to the United States for a period of 90 days to get married.

I’ve Married a U.S. Citizen. How Do I Apply for My Marriage Green Card?

Applying for a green card through marriage is a three step process:

Step 1: Establish the marriage relationship.

Step 2: Apply for the green card.

Step 3: Attend the green card interview and wait for approval.

The team at Zohar Law can help you apply for your green card through marriage. Learn more by scheduling a consultation.

How Long Does It Take to Get a Green Card?

The green card application process can take anywhere from seven to 33 months. The length of time it takes depends on the type of green card you apply for.

Ready to learn more about the green card process? Learn more from the immigration law team at Zohar Law.

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Family-Based Green Card FAQ

What Is a Family-Based Green Card?

A family-based green card is exactly what it sounds like. If you have an immediate family that are U.S. citizens or green card holders, you can apply for a green card as well.

What Relatives May I Sponsor if I am a U.S. Citizen?

As a U.S. citizen you may sponsor the following family members:

  • Spouses

  • Parents (You must be over the age of 21)

  • Children (Child must be under the age of 21)

What Relatives May I Sponsor if I am a Permanent Resident?

If you are a permanent resident you may sponsor the following family members:

  • Spouses

  • Unmarried children

Are Half Siblings and Step Siblings Considered Immediate Family?

Yes. The half siblings and step siblings are considered immediate family.

Who Is Eligible for a VAWA Green Card?

The Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) allows those who have been the victim of abuse by a U.S. citizen self-petition for permanent resident status without notifying their abuser. To learn more about VAWA, contact the team at Zohar Law in Manhattan today.

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The Green Card Process FAQ

Can My Application Be Denied?

Yes. There are many reasons why green cards can be denied. However some of the most common are missing information on the forms, failure to provide translations, or insufficient fees.

How Much Does a Green Card Cost?

The costs of a green card will vary depending on which type of green card you are applying for. You should expect to pay processing fees, biometrics service fees, USCIS immigrant fees, medical exam fees, and possibly others.

Should I Hire an Immigration Lawyer?

Yes! If you are getting ready to apply for a green card of any kind, you should have an experienced immigration attorney at your side. At Zohar Law, we will help to ensure that all of your paperwork is filed properly and that you meet all the eligibility requirements for the green card you are applying for. Contact us today and we’ll get you started with a free, no-obligation consultation.

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