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US Green Card for Nigerians

The United States Green Card is a residence status that allows foreign nationals to permanently settle and stay in the USA.

Becoming a permanent resident in the U.S is an exciting prospect for Nigerians who wish to live and work in the USA. IAS can support you with your application. To apply for a Green Card, Contact us online or call us today on +44 (0) 3316300929 in the US or on +23413438882 in Nigeria.

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    Want to Settle in the U.S?

    IAS is a team of expert immigration lawyers that can help you make the U.S your permanent home. We can help you with your application process and with permanently settling you and your family abroad.

    Let us help you become a U.S permanent resident.

    Nigerian Emigration

    For Nigerian emigration matters, please call +23413438882 or +44 (0) 3316300929

    Other Immigration and Emigration Matters

    For immigration/emigration to/from other countries, please call:

    US –  +1 844 290 6312

    Ireland –  (+353) 061 518 025

    UK –  (+44) 333 4149244

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    What is a US Green Card?

    The Green Card is the U.S permanent resident card offered to foreign applicants who wish to live and work in the United States. A Green Card offers permanent residence, working rights, and travel in and out of the U.S without immigration restrictions.

    After 3 to 5 years, Green Card holders are able to apply for U.S citizenship so long as they meet all of the relevant criteria.

    Conditional Permanent Residency vs. Permanent Residency

    The U.S offers two types of Green Cards:

    • Conditional Green Cards – allow you to live and work in the United States but only for two years, and you will have to update your status to a full Green Card
    • 10 Year Green Cards – allow you to live and work in the U.S for 10 years before applying for renewal or for citizenship.

    How Do I Get a US Green Card?

    There are many different routes to apply for a Green Card. Nigerians applying to become a U.S permanent resident must fit into one of the following categories:

    • Green Card through employment
    • Green Card through registry
    • Green Card through family
    • Green Card as a special immigrant
    • Green Card through refugee or Asylee status
    • Green Card for victims of abuse
    • Green Card for human trafficking and crime victims
    • Green Card through other categories, for example:
    • Persons born in the U.S to a foreign diplomat
    • Cuban natives or children of Cuban natives
    • Selectees of the diversity visa in the diversity visa lottery.

    Family Based Green Cards

    You may be eligible for one of the family-based Green Card categories if you have a relation to a U.S citizen or U.S permanent resident in one of the following ways:

    • A spouse or civil partner
    • A fiancé(e) or child of the fiancé(e)
    • Unmarried child under 21
    • A parent of a U.S citizen who is at least 21
    • Married son or daughter
    • Brother or sister who is at least 21
    • A widower
    • Abused spouse, parent or child under 21.

    Employment Green Cards

    Overview

    There are many different types of work visas available in the U.S, and many routes allow you to apply for permanent residence. The different types of eligible work categories are outlined below.

    First Preference Immigrant Worker

    You will be considered a first preference immigrant worker if you meet one of the following criteria:

    • Have extraordinary abilities in arts, athletics, business, education, or sciences
    • Are an outstanding researcher or professor
    • Are a multinational manager or executive.

    Second Preference Immigrant Worker

    You will be considered a second preference immigrant worker if you meet one of the following criteria:

    • Work in a profession that requires an advanced degree
    • Have exceptional abilities in the arts, business, or sciences
    • Are seeking a national interest waiver.

    Third Preference Immigrant Worker

    You will be considered a third preference immigrant worker if you meet one of the following criteria:

    • Are a skilled worker with a minimum of 2 years of training or work experience
    • Are a professional worker with at least a U.S bachelor’s degree or foreign equivalent
    • Are an unskilled worker who will be performing unskilled labour.

    Other Employment Routes

    Other routes to obtain a Green Card include:

    • Apply as a Physician National Interest Waiver – you are a physician who will work full-time in a clinical practice in a designated underserved area for a set period of time
    • Apply as an Immigrant Investor – you have already or will invest at least $1,050,000, or $800,000 in a targeted employment or infrastructure project in a new commercial enterprise in the U.S, creating at least 10 full-time employment opportunities.

    Secure your path to the US. Contact us to apply for a US Green Card today. Contact Us

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      Green Card as a Special Immigrant

      You are considered eligible for a Green Card as a Special Immigrant if you:

      • Are a religious worker from abroad coming to work in the U.S for a nonprofit religious organisation
      • Are a juvenile who requires protection because you have been abandoned, abused or neglected by a parent
      • Are an international broadcaster coming to work in the U.S as a member of the media for the U.S Agency for Global Media (USAGM)
      • Are a retired officer or employee, or the family member of someone once employed by an eligible international organisation or NATO.

      Green Card as a Refugee or Asylee Status

      You will be considered for permanent residence under this category if you:

      • Were admitted to the United States as a refugee at least one year ago
      • Were admitted to the United States as an asylum seeker at least one year ago.

      Green Card for Human Trafficking and Crime Victims

      You will be considered for permanent residence under this category if you:

      • Were a victim of human trafficking and are currently in the U.S on a T nonimmigrant visa
      • Were a crime victim and are currently in the U.S on a U nonimmigrant visa.

      Nigerians, don't miss out on your chance to get a US Green Card. Contact our expert team for assistance. Contact Us

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        Green Card for Victims of Abuse

        You will be considered for permanent residence under this category if you:

        • Are an abused spouse, parent, or unmarried child under 21 of a U.S citizen or permanent resident
        • Are a juvenile who requires protection because you have been abandoned, abused or neglected by a parent
        • Are the abused spouse or child of a Cuban native or citizen
        • Are an abused spouse or child of a lawful permanent resident who has a Green card based on the Haitian Refugee Immigration Fairness Act (HRIFA).

        Green Card through Other Categories

        You will be considered for permanent residence under this category if you:

        • Are a Liberian national who has been continuously present in the U.S since November 20 2013, or are their spouse, child under 21 or unmarried child over 21
        • Were selected for a diversity visa in the visa lottery
        • Are a Cuban native or citizen, or are their spouse or child
        • Are the spouse or child of a Haitian Refugee who has a Green Card based on HRIFA
        • Have been paroled into the U.S as a Lautenberg parolee
        • Are a native or citizen of Vietnam, Kampuchea (Cambodia) or Laos who was paroled into the U.S on or before October 1 1997
        • Are an American Indian born in Canada
        • Were born in the U.S to a foreign diplomat stationed in the country at the time of your birth
        • Are stationed in the U.S as a foreign diplomat or high ranking official and are unable to return to your country of origin.

        What Documents Do I Need to Apply for a Green Card?

        As there are many routes to becoming a permanent resident in the United States, each applicant will have different requirements to fulfil when they apply for a Green Card. In general, if you wish to become a U.S Green Card holder as a Nigerian, you will need the following documents:

        • A completed Green Card application form:
          • Form I-485 if you are applying in the U.S
          • Form DS-260 if you are applying from abroad
        • An Immigration Petition form specific to the applicant’s circumstances, which usually requires a sponsor who files the petition on the applicant’s behalf. This person will be required to follow a lengthy process for application as well, so bear this in mind when you are considering the application process timeline
        • Biometric information, which will be organised as part of the application process
        • Two recent passport photos
        • Your current passport or travel document
        • A birth certificate, translated into English if required. If the applicant doesn’t have a birth certificate, they must provide other documentation explaining why
        • Attend an interview.

        Applying for a Green Card is a long process, and you will likely need far more documentation and identification than is listed above. We understand that you may feel overwhelmed with the application and feel unsure about whether you are choosing the right route to permanent residence. Our team of expert immigration lawyers are here to support you. Contact us online or call us today on +44 (0) 3316300929 or on +23413438882 in Nigeria.

        How Do I Apply?

        Applying for a Green Card is a long process, and the steps you need to take are dependent on which route you are taking to permanent residency.

        If you are applying within the United States, you will need to follow the Adjustment of Status process with USCIS.

        If you are applying from Nigeria or another country outside of the United States, you will need to apply through the U.S consulate in your country and follow the consular processing application process.

        In general, you will need to:

        • Collect all relevant documents for your application process route
        • Have someone file an immigrant petition for you – i.e. someone needs to sponsor you. This can be a family member or an employer, for example. In some cases, you can file for yourself
        • Once USCIS has approved the immigrant petition, you will need to confirm that there is an available visa in the relevant category you are applying for, and will need to file a Green Card application with USCIS or a visa application with the U.S Department of State
        • Attend a biometrics appointment to provide photos, fingerprints and signatures
        • Attend an interview.

        Discover the requirements for acquiring a US Green Card for Nigerians. Contact us for more information. Contact Us

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          How Much Does the United States Green Card Cost?

          The cost of your application for a Green Card will greatly depend on which route you take.

          In general, you can expect to pay $1760 USD per person on application processing fees if you are applying from within the U.S, and if you are applying from Nigeria or another country abroad you can expect to pay around $1200 USD.

          Be mindful that this does not include additional fees such as the USCIS immigrant fee ($220 USD), administrative fees, medical examination fees, document translation fees, any any legal fees if you require legal support with your application process.

          How Long Does it Take to Apply?

          Applying to become a permanent resident in the United States is a lengthy process. You should not expect to receive a response on your application for at least one year, though most applicants need to wait at least two years.

          If You Are Applying Whilst in the U.S

          In general, the average wait time for your application process if you applied in the U.S is 1 to 2 years. If you are applying through family, immediate relatives (parents and minor children) or are a spouse, you can expect a response sooner than other relatives, such as siblings or adult children of U.S citizens or permanent residents.

          Information about the wait time should be available to you once you have submitted your application.

          If You Are Applying From Abroad

          The wait time if you are applying from abroad varies significantly, and is dependent on the route that you are using to permanent residence. Again, you should expect to wait at least one year for a response. Information about the wait time should be available to you once you have submitted your application.

          How Can IAS Help?

          Thousands of Nigerians apply to become a permanent resident in the United States each year. Some wish to spend time in the U.S for a short period of time, and enjoy the many exciting opportunities and experiences that the country has to offer. Others look to join their family members, or have been sponsored by their employer to work in the United States.

          Whatever your reasons, we know that moving abroad is a big step, and that it’s vital that your application process goes smoothly. We also know that it can be even more difficult if you are trying to bring family with you, or are applying as a dependant of a US citizen. We know how disappointing it would be to get refused.

          That’s why we are here. We can help you understand which visa is the right visa for you to enter the country with, so that you can then look to pursue working, living, or becoming a legal permanent resident of the United States.

          Contact us online or call us today on +44 (0) 3316300929 or on +23413438882 in Nigeria, or visit our office in Lagos.

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            Our Application Package is designed to help relieve the stress of immigration applications. One of our legal caseworkers will help you throughout the entire process, including establishing your eligibility for your chosen route, completing your application form to the highest standards and organising your documents. We will then submit it and monitor its status on your behalf.

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              Our premium Fast Track Package is ideal if you need to submit an application quickly, such as if you need to meet a tight deadline. Our lawyers will work closely with you to see that your application is completed to the highest standards and ensure you get your application in on time, helping to take the stress and pressure off you.

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                    Related pages for your continued reading.

                    Frequently Asked Questions

                    Yes, if you have a 10 year permanent resident Green Card, you will be eligible to apply for citizenship after five years, or three years if you are married to a U.S citizen.

                    No, the immigrant visa is not the same. While the immigrant visa allows you to live and work permanently in the U.S, the Green Card is an actual residence permit and allows you to eventually apply for citizenship. The pathway to citizenship, for example, is as follows:

                    • Apply for an Immigrant Visa before arriving in the U.S
                    • Once settled in the United States, apply for a Green Card
                    • Once you are issued a Green Card, apply to become a United States Citizen.
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