Every now and then I hear something like this: “How do I get a green card?”
“Well…you need luck and lots of patience…”
But that is not really the answer the person is looking for. I wish there were a map, of some sort, which I could point to that would explain how to get from Point A to Point B, and Point B happens to be a “green card.” Since I couldn’t find a map anywhere, I decided to create one.
It took longer than I thought, but here is the result: a one-page flow chart showing nearly all legal paths to becoming a U.S. permanent resident.
Click on the image above to see the PDF version (that allows you to read it, actually).
Basically, if you are thinking about immigration, the flow chart will show you all the options out there. You may use your skills, family tie, wealth, or even luck to knock on the door to the United State. Whether you are still outside the U.S., or are currently studying, working, visiting, there could be a way to green card. But there are also numerous hurdles along the way. For people who are already in the process, it helps you gain a better understanding of the whole picture.
The U.S. immigration system is comparable to a maze; hopefully our road map makes it easier to understand.