How Do I File for my Green Card in New York?

New York City is known for welcoming Immigration from all over the world for centuries.  People come to America for various reasons, some personal and others professional.  Either way once a person steps onto U.S. soil they need to understand very serious Immigration laws and ensure they are compliant with their current Immigration status.  The most common method to establish permanent residency in the United States is through a permanent residence Visa or “Green Card”.

 U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services has made the process of obtaining such a Green Card very difficult and only a limited amount of applicants are granted permanent residency annually.  Hiring a NYC Immigration attorney prior to applying for any permanent residence in the USA is highly suggested.  The Immigration specialist can guide you through the process which may allow you to stay in the U.S.  The U.S. Visa application process is complex and so the Immigration firm will assist you in completing an application whether it be for a 10 year term of residency, asylum or sponsorship with the assistance of a permanent resident or current U.S. citizen relative.

It will be to your advantage if you have a close relative, immediate family or spouse that can assist with the Green Card process.  Some requirements for obtaining a Green Card with family sponsorship:


  • Immediate relative or spouse who is a U.S. citizen;
  • U.S. citizen relative that fits into a category set by U.S. Citizenship and Immigration;
  • Family member currently holds a Green Card;
  • Battered spouses and children (VAWA) qualified;
  • Born to a foreign diplomat;
  • K or V nonimmigrant; or
  • Widow or Widower of a U.S. citizen


U.S. Employment Green Card


Anyone looking to obtain a Green Card and permanent residency through employment will need a Certification from the U.S. Department of Labor that shows there is a shortage of U.S. workers to fill that particular position.  This can be a difficult task since the U.S. economy is in need of more jobs for its current citizens; however, it will be an advantage if an applicant can demonstrate their exceedingly skilled more than most Americans for that position.  Additionally, you can obtain a Green Card not only from a job offer, but from an investment, self-petition or other special categories such as a religious worker.


Employment Immigration Residency Preferences in U.S.


First Preference and Second Preference

  • Extraordinary Talent
  • Exceptional Professor or Researcher
  • Multi-International Executive
  • Advanced Degree


Second Preference – National Interest Waiver – NIW

  • Persons with Exceptional Ability that shall benefit U.S. National Interest
  • Advanced Degree that shall benefit U.S. National Interest
  • Exceptional Professor or and |Researcher that shall benefit the U.S. National Interest


Third Preference

  • U.S. Bachelor Degree Equivalent Foreign Degree
  • Skilled Workers
  • Unskilled Workers


Asylee or Refugee Status Green Card


To obtain a Green Card through Asylee/Refugee status you must be officially admitted to the United States either as a Refugee or a family member of an Asylee, or you must have been granted asylum.  There is a one (1) year limit to apply for permanent residency after your entry or grant is provided.  If you are a Refugee, it is required for you to apply, but not required to apply as an Asylee.


Conditional Green Cards


A Green Card is normally issued for a 10 year term; however, there are qualified circumstances in which this permanent residency can be shortened to no more than a two (2) year period residency.  This type of two (2) year residency is called a conditional permanent residency.  If a person desires to stay in the U.S. longer and extend the terms of their residency they must do so within 90 days of its expiration date.  A petition to remove the condition from the Green Card must be filed.

Conditional Green Cards cannot be renewed and must be amended.  Failure to remove the conditions of permanent residency will result in a loss of permanent resident status.  A form may be filed in order to remove such conditions by an experienced NY Immigration attorney due to the complex nature of the various circumstances and forms.


Attorney Gilmer has experience handling Immigration Applications and Immigration Green Card Visa disputes in New York.  Hiring a NY Immigration lawyer with his background is key to ensuring your rights are protected by the United States and U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services.


George M. Gilmer, Esq.

26 Court Street

Brooklyn, New York 11242