The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) is the body responsible for granting visas (immigrant) to international individuals who meet specific criteria and wish to become permanent residents in the U.S. Immigrants who have ascertained permanent residency are given green cards, which allow them to work and live in the U.S.
International citizens can apply for the following sorts of immigration visas;
- Visas for immediate relatives
- Visas for family preference
- Diversity Visa
- Visas on Employment-Basis
Visas for Immediate Relatives
Foreign nationals can apply for immigrant visas for immediate relatives who are US citizens. Unlike other immigrant visas, the number of visas for immediate relatives given yearly is limitless.
An immediate relative in this context is a spouse, an unmarried ward under the age of 21, or a parent. For direct relatives of U.S citizens, the following visa classifications are available;
- IR-1: U.S. citizen’s spouse
- IR-2: Child of a US citizen who is not married.
- IR-3: A U.S. citizen adopts an orphan in another country.
- IR-4: An orphan will be adopted in the US by a citizen of the United States.
- IR-5: Parent of a United States citizen
Visas for Family Preference
Visas may be granted to aloof relatives of US citizens and some relatives of law-abiding permanent residents. The relationship between a citizen of American or a law-abiding permanent resident and the relative determines the family preference group. The following are the categories, with the annual visa restriction in parentheses;
- F-1: Unmarried child of a citizen of the United States and young children (23,400)
- F-2: A lawful permanent resident’s spouse, minor kid, and yet to be married child (over the age of 21) (114,200)
- F-3: U.S. citizen’s married child, spouse, and their younger children (23,400)
- F-4: A U.S. citizen’s sibling, husband, and their younger children are all eligible (65,000)
Visa for family preference is applied for in the same way as an immediate relative visa: the petitioner submits Form I-130 to the USCIS, and the recipient either submits Form I-485 (for individuals already in the US) or through the embassy or consulate of native country (for those outside the United States) files for and immigrant visa.
Foreign people from countries with historically and statistically low immigration rates to the United States can file for permanent residency through the Diversity Immigrant Visa Program.
The total amount of visas available under this scheme is summed up at 50,000, while candidates are picked at random from among those who qualify following the amount of visas available in each country. Because of qualifying restrictions, getting a visa is not guaranteed even while selections pass through this process.
Visas on Employment-Basis
The USCIS gives out over 140,000+ visas on employment-Basis to foreign nationals who meet certain requirements each year. The five most popular types of visas are as follows;
- EB-1: Priority employees
- EB-2: Advanced-degreed professionals or those with outstanding abilities
- EB-3: Workers who are professionals, competent, and unskilled
- EB-4: a few unique immigrants
- EB-5: Investors from other countries
Before a permanent resident status is granted, some requirements must be fulfilled for each employment-based visa type.