An immigrant visa is required of anyone who wishes to enter the United States to reside there permanently, whether or not that person plans to seek employment in the United States. U.S. immigration law provides for the issuance of immigrant visas in four general categories: immediate relative, family based, employment based, and the Diversity Immigrant Visa Program, known as the "green card" lottery.
Family Visas allow family members to be united with their relatives in the United States through sponsorship of spouses, fiance(e)s, children, parents and siblings:
- Fiance(e) of US Citizen Visa (K-1): The Fiance(e) of US Citizen visa allows to US Citizen to sponsor their foreign national fiance(e) to join them in the US and then apply for permanent residence.
- Spouse of US Citizen Visa (K-3): The Spouse of US Citizen Visa allows a US citizen to sponsor their foreign national to join them in the US and then apply to become a permanent residence.
The Business Visa category allows eligible nationals to develop and direct investment in or trade with the US while living in the US temporarily:
- Treaty Trader Visa (E-1):The Treaty Trader visa allows owners, executives and employees of eligible foreign companies to temporarily work and live in the US while engaging in substantial trade to and from the US.
- Treaty Investor Visa (E-2): The Treaty Investor visa allows foreigners who invest substantial funds in a business operation and their employees to temporarily live in the United States while they work for the business operation.
- Business Visitors Visa (B-1): A business Visitors visa allows business persons to enter the US to engage in business activities, such as attending meeting, conventions and lectures.
A Green Card provides lawful permanent residence in the US and can be applied for through a family member, employment or the Diversity Lottery:
- Priority Workers (EB-1):The Priority Worker category allows foreigners with extraordinary abilities in the sciences, arts, education, business, or athletics to apply for permanent residence through their employment.
- Advance Degree Holders (EB-2):The Advance Degree Holder category allows foreigners with a Master’s Degree or exceptional ability in the sciences, arts or business to apply for permanent residence through their employment.
- Professional and Skilled Workers (EB-3): The Professional and Skilled Workers category allows foreigners with a Baccalaureate degree or professional work experience to apply for permanent residence through their employment.
- Special Immigrants (EB-4):The Special Immigrants category allows Ministers of Religion, NATO employees and certain medical graduates to apply for permanent residence through their employment.
- Employment Creation (EB-B):The Employment Creation category allows entrepreneurs who can invest in a new commercial enterprise in the United States to apply for residence.
US Citizenship is the dream of many immigrants. United States Citizenship has many rewards including the right to vote in federal and local elections, the right to travel with a United States passport, the right to apply for federal jobs and the right to petition for various close family members to become US permanent residents:
- Citizenship Acquired by Birth:Citizenship Acquired by Birth is obtained when a person is born in the US or granted based on the birthplace and residence of their parents.
- Citizenship Acquired by Naturalization:Citizenship Acquired by Naturalization is obtained when a lawful permanent residence applies to become a US citizen after a prescribed period of residence in the US.
- Citizenship Acquired by Derivative Status: Citizenship Acquired by Derivative Status allows those born outside the US to become a US Citizen based on their parents’ citizenship.
- Citizenship Acquired by Status at Birth:Citizenship Acquired by Status at Birth allows those born outside the US to become a US citizen based on their parent and grandparent’s residence.