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United States Visa Options and Requirements for Green Cards

Visa options for immigration to the United States are quite varied depending on your circumstances and what you want to do. Some visas relate strictly to employment or education and others are given to individuals who have a special expertise in areas of particular interest such as technology, medicine, etc.

A Green Card
This is the most common visa and one that comes in six different categories. The first one is an EB-1 that allows extraordinary researchers and professors from another country to live and teach in America permanently. An EB-2 is for foreign students who hold advanced degrees and want to live or continue education here. The EB-3 is designed for skilled laborers and similar professionals. An EB-4 is made for religious workers or for medical graduates from foreign countries. The EB-5 visa provides a method of obtaining a green card for foreign nationals who invest money in the United States, creating or preserving jobs.

You also have family visas that are given out to family members or fiancés of those from foreign countries.

Requirements for all these visas are strict. For example one will need documentation and evidence to confirm their educational credentials or specialty area. The investment visa has a requirement of proving the validity of the capital investment as well as the investor creating at least 10 full-time jobs.

The family visas have numerous subcategories for different family relationships. A petition for a permanent visa can be filed if the family member is over the age of 21.

Employment Visas
Many people from foreign countries want to come and work in the U.S. But they have to go through the laborious process of applying for various employment visas in order to legally land a job. Many of those visas go through the alphabet in their respective categories. One of the more common ones is the H1-B visa that allows a foreigner with at least a bachelor’s degree to come and work temporarily in a specialty career. These are usually good for three years, though can be extended up to six years or beyond.

Requirements for the H1-B include evidence of an educational degree, plus documentation proving that any job taken is a specific specialty career.

Other employment visas include the L-1 visa for foreigners who want to open a U.S. corporation, and the O visa for extraordinary foreigners in the arts. Requirements for these are identical in proving educative history.

Exceptions for Foreigners That Benefit the U.S.
Some visas called National Interest Waivers are given out to extraordinary foreign citizens who would benefit the U.S. by teaching or working here. These work similarly to an EB-2 visa, except waivers occur if evidence shows the person has an extensive background in a field that’s garnered awards and esteemed recognition. Typically, this falls under science, though it can be any field.

If there’s proof the person can help the U.S. economy and many other American social or educative issues, these waivers can potentially be granted.

If you have questions about obtaining a visa for yourself, your business, or a family member, please contact us directly.

Bostonian Legal Group