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In the realm of immigration to the United States, the coveted green cards hold the key to obtaining permanent residency—a significant milestone for people seeking to establish a long-term presence in the country. 

In this blog, we’ve compiled this beginner’s guide to help you confidently navigate the world of green cards. Read on for more!

Understanding Green Cards

Green cards, officially known as Permanent Resident Cards, grant foreign nationals the legal status to live and work permanently in the U.S. 

They serve as proof of lawful permanent residency. Additionally, they are a pathway to citizenship for eligible individuals.

Green Card Eligibility

To be eligible for a green card, you have to meet specific criteria set by the U.S. government, such as:

  • Family Sponsorship.
  • Employment-based sponsorship.
  • Refugee or asylee status.

Green Card Categories and Application Processes

Family-Based Green Cards:

Application typically involves sponsorship by a close family member who is a U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident.

The process may vary based on the relationship between the applicant and the sponsor.

Employment-Based Green Cards:

Requires a job offer from a U.S. employer willing to sponsor the applicant for permanent residency.

Different employment preference categories dictate eligibility, such as EB-1 for priority workers and EB-2 for professionals with advanced degrees.

Diversity Lottery Green Cards:

They are offered through the Diversity Immigrant Visa Program, providing a limited number of green cards to individuals from countries with low immigration rates to the U.S.

Applicants must meet certain education or work experience requirements to participate in the lottery.

Refugee or Asylee Green Cards:

Available to individuals granted refugee or asylee status in the U.S., allowing them to adjust their status to permanent residency after one year.

Benefits and Responsibilities of Holding a Green Card


  • Ability to live and work permanently in the U.S.
  • Eligibility to sponsor certain family members for green cards.
  • Access to all social security benefits and healthcare services.
  • Permission to travel internationally without needing a visa for short trips.
  • Opportunity to apply for U.S. citizenship after meeting residency requirements.


  • Compliance with U.S. laws and regulations.
  • Payment of federal, state, and local taxes.
  • Obligation to notify USCIS of address changes within a specified timeframe.
  • Maintaining continuous residence in the U.S. and avoiding extended periods of absence.
  • Adherence to all immigration laws and regulations governing green card holders.

Nurturing Dreams of a Secure Future With Presti Law Firm

The journey can be daunting and uncertain for individuals aspiring to secure their place in the U.S. through permanent residency. Facing the challenges of navigating complex immigration processes and eligibility criteria can leave them feeling overwhelmed and anxious. 

At Presti Law Firm, we guide you through the intricate pathways of green cards and permanent residency. We are committed to providing you with the expertise, support, and compassion needed to make your residency dreams a reality. Get in touch with us.