Permanent Resident Status Through Employment by Neil Dhawan, Esq.

Permanent Resident status (Green Card) through employment is acquired by many.  In general, people enter the United States on a temporary basis with a visa and must depart after a short trip.  Permanent Resident (Green Card) status through employment allows you to live and work in the United States permanently.  This means you can purchase property, obtain government loans, start a business, enroll in school, and be employed by virtually any employer in the United States.  Permanent resident status is also one step away from becoming a United States citizen.

There are several different ways available to obtain permanent resident status including through family, through employment, or through refugee or asylee status.  Many people obtain permanent resident status through employment.

Permanent Resident Status Through a Job Offer

A job offer from a United States employer is a way to obtain permanent resident status.  Many people seeking to transition to permanent resident status must already have an employer-sponsored visa.  There is a long list of specific criteria that must meet in order to qualify for permanent resident through an employer.  Additionally, there can be long waiting periods and limits on the number of visas available.  In fact, you can learn more about permanent residence status through a job offer by visiting our webpage on H-1B visas.

Permanent Resident Status Through an Investment

Furthermore, another way to obtain permanent resident is through an investment.  Certain options require you to start or purchase a business and show substantial investment.  Substantial investment can be as little as $50,000 for an E visa, which can be the first step in obtaining permanent resident status.  If you wish to transition to permanent resident status you can apply for an EB-5 investment program.  To obtain an EB-5 your investment must be at least $500,000 to $1,000,000 in a business that creates jobs for United States citizens.  The common visas which can help you obtain permanent resident cards include E1/E2, EB-5, and L visas.  These methods of permanent resident status are discussed more fully on our Business Visas and Green Cards immigration section of our website.

Permanent Resident Status Through Extraordinary Ability

Certain employment positions allow you to self-petition for your green card.  If you are an immigrant with extraordinary ability in science, business, arts, education, or athletics you may self-petition. These people are at the top of their field of study.  A few examples required to demonstrated top of your field of study include:

  • People who have achieved great success in their field;
  • Nobel prize winners; or
  • Notable athletes.

Consequently, the O visa is generally the starting point for permanent resident status prior to self-petitioning.

Permanent Resident Status through Employment

Accordingly, there are many other options available to obtain permanent resident status.  If you wish to live and work permanently in the United States, you must obtain permanent resident status.  Permanent resident status can take years or even decades.  Likewise, applications for permanent resident status can involve many government agencies.  Specifically, the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services, the National Visa Center, and consulates embassies abroad. In conclusion, Shupe Dhawan will guide you handle the entire process from a visa to permanent resident card to United States citizenship.


Neil Dhawan is the firm’s managing partner and focuses her practice on Immigration and Real Estate Matters.  He is a seasoned attorney, with significant legal experience and has handled a wide variety of litigation and transactional matters for the firm.

Make sure to visit our website at www.shupedhawan.com to learn more about the firm and partners!

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