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Understanding The Process For Permanent Residency

Updated: Sep 18, 2023

Securing a visa or otherwise gaining legal permission to enter or stay in the United States can be a personal victory. Many people are grateful for the opportunity to live, study or work in the United States. They may also aspire to live permanently in the country.

Visas have numerous restrictions and only last for a fixed amount of time. Although many visas are eligible for renewal, eventually those who entered the country using a visa will need to leave again. Becoming a permanent resident is a way for those already living in the United States to remain here for the rest of their lives.

What does the process of becoming a permanent resident involved?

You Have To Apply To Adjust Your Status


The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has likely maintained files about your visa or work permit. To go from a visa holder to a green card holder or permanent resident, you must file special paperwork to adjust your status with the USCIS.

The process of adjusting your status starts with the submission of paperwork. The USCIS will review your records and documents and then conduct an interview. If they grant you a green card, you can lawfully remain in the country for the next 10 years. Of course, permanent residents can still face removal for certain criminal convictions.

Becoming A Permanent Resident Can Be A Complex Process


Handling USCIS paperwork and ensuring that you don’t make any mistakes will be key to becoming a permanent resident of the United States. There are different kinds of documentation required depending on what qualifies you to become a permanent resident.

It can be difficult to handle the paperwork required and even more challenging to secure a green card when issues arise. Even small mistakes can lead to failure, and many immigrants need to manage this process while working full-time and caring for their families.

Many immigrants hoping to remain in the United States indefinitely and expand their family-based immigration opportunities will secure professional help when they attempt to adjust their status. Having the right support and information about different immigration programs can make all the difference for those who want to stay in the United States.

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