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The Law Offices of Alice Antonovsky, PLLC takes pride in helping its clients legalize their status in the United States, apply for the right kind of visa and keep their families together through the most suitable application method.

What is a Green Card and What are the Benefits of Getting One?

“Green Card” is the commonly used term for the United States Permanent Resident Card. Having a Green Card means you can legally live and work in the United States, permanently.

Green Card holders are eligible for certain government benefits and protections, such as the ability to travel in and out of the U.S. without the need for a visa, no need for a work permit, better employment opportunities, and lower higher-education costs than international students.

There is no single pathway to becoming a Green Card holder. Your options may include but are not limited to: a family-based sponsorship, getting a Green Card through marriage, an employment-based sponsorship, adjusting your status after being granted asylum, or succeeding on the Diversity Visa Lottery.

Eventually, legal permanent residents can become U.S. citizens. This would be done through the Naturalization process. The applicant must have been a lawful permanent resident for at least 5 years, or 3 years if married to a U.S. citizen.

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  1. Have a Family member sponsor you: A U.S. citizen or permanent resident can sponsor their spouse, children, parents, or siblings for a Green Card.
  2. Have an employer sponsor you: An employer can sponsor an employee for a Green Card if they can prove the position cannot be filled by a local applicant. To be sponsored, employees must meet certain qualifications, such as having specialized skills or a high level of education.
  3. Adjust your status after being granted refuge or asylum: Individuals who have been granted refugee or asylee status in the United States may be eligible for a Green Card after one year of residency.
  4. Diversity Visa Lottery: Each year, a limited number of Green Cards are made available through a lottery system for individuals from countries with low rates of immigration to the United States.
  • Permanent residency status: legal permanent residents have the piece of mind they need to focus on their lives and long term plans. There is no expiring visa date to worry about. They can call the United States home.
  • Employment opportunities: Green Card holders can work for any employer in the United States. As opposed to an employment-based visa, their status is not linked to a sponsorship. Plus, as a permanent resident you do not need any additional work visa or work permit.
  • Education opportunities: Green Card holders have access to a range of educational opportunities, such as scholarships and lower costs than international students.
  • Social Security and Healthcare benefits: Green Card holders are eligible for Social Security benefits, including retirement and disability. Additionally, they are eligible to enroll in Medicare after meeting certain criteria.
  • Eligibility for U.S. citizenship: As a Green Card holder living in the United States for at least 5 years under permanent resident status you will be eligible for Naturalization. U.S. citizen spouses are eligible after 3 years.

The processing times for family-based visas can range from several months to several years. This is why it is so important to make sure all paperwork is carefully completed and supported by the requested documentation.


Usually, an employer or family member sponsors your application and files a petition on your behalf to the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). In some cases you will be able to file a self-petition, depending on the eligibility requirements.


USCIS will review your case and decide whether your petition is approved. If it is, they will check that there is a visa available in your category and let you know when you can submit your Green Card petition.


You will be required to attend a biometrics appointment where they will take your fingerprints, photo, and signature.


You will attend an interview where immigration authorities will ask you questions regarding your case and submitted documentation.


You’ll get the decision and find out if you’ve become a U.S. permanent resident!

Note: You can apply for a Green Card in the United States or from abroad. Most applicants will be asked for a medical examination, affidavit of support, and proof that they will not become a public charge.

  • The first thing to know is that being a U.S. permanent resident is not the same as being a U.S. Citizen. As a permanent resident you get a lot of the same benefits and responsibilities a citizen would. However, certain things like voting or getting an American passport are exclusive to U.S. Citizens.
  • The process of going from Green Card holder to citizen is called Naturalization. You will be eligible to apply for it once you have lived 5 years in the United States as a permanent resident or 3 years if you are married to a U.S. citizen. To complete this process you will have to take a language and civics test in front of an immigration officer.
F.A.Q About Green Cards In The United States

The eligibility categories for a Green Card include employment-based, family-based, special immigrant, asylum or refugee status, and the Diversity Immigrant Visa Program (a.k.a.the Green Card lottery).

The Diversity Immigrant Visa Program, or Green Card lottery, is a program that allows individuals from selected countries with low rates of immigration to the United States to apply for a Green Card. Every year the U.S. allocates a number of available Green Cards to be randomly offered to eligible participants.

The definitive list of evidence required depends on the eligibility category and anything that immigration authorities may consider relevant to your case. However, it usually includes birth certificates, marriage certificates, employment records, medical records, and proof of financial support.

If your Green Card application is denied, you may have the option to appeal the decision. Nevertheless, you must keep in mind the appealing options depend on the reason for the denial and other factors.

Client Reviews
Michelle Holland
Michelle Holland
24. April, 2021.
I called desperately needing help finding the A-Number for a lost green card. Lital answered the telephone and quickly helped to resolve this problem. I was able to immediately complete the I-90 application. I will now refer all my immigrant friends to this law office!!! Thank you Lital!!!
Mircea Ghinda
Mircea Ghinda
9. December, 2020.
Alice is the best immigration lawyer I know. She managed my case very well and she kept me updated on my status all the time, that showed that in her office work only professional and skilled people. Alice and her team was constantly calling immigration to see if the case is moving as it should without any issues. I highly recommend others using this lawyer for their immigration needs.
Anthony Shepherd
Anthony Shepherd
4. August, 2020.
My Wife and I are absolutely pleased with Alice and her crew! We had only a marriage based application but Alice took it to the next level. She explained everything from the beginning to the final. She’s very knowledgeable , friendly and helpful. The whole office crew are helpful. Whoever is looking for a top immigration attorney, look no further! Prices are also reasonable. ?
Galyna Sas
Galyna Sas
28. July, 2020.
Alisa Antonovsky The most professional immigration lawyer that I know! Highly recommend. Easy answered on my question and gave me a properly direction with my case. Thanks a lot. She tries to understand the case in depth and listens carefully. Her advice is very much careful. Thanks for Everything thing you done for me! I will definitely recommend Alisa Antonovsky to my friends.
manuchehr saidov
manuchehr saidov
13. November, 2019.
Alice Antonovsky is extremely knowledgeable, professional and outstanding immigration attorney.Highly recommended!!!
Hamza12 Haider12
Hamza12 Haider12
17. October, 2019.
Brilliant lawyer worth it
Brianna K
Brianna K
16. August, 2019.
I reached out to Alice because I needed help with my green card application process. She was very knowledgeable, professional and friendly. Her staff was easy to communicate with and friendly as well. All of my questions were answered right away, everything was handled on time. Alice was very helpful at preparing me for the interview, accompanied me and made me feel calm. I'd highly recommend her services!

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