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Individuals interested in obtaining a green card in Los Angeles can expect a challenging process. However, the reward of permanent residency and the right to work in the U.S. are typically well-worth the headaches. Additionally, LA residents with a green card are eligible for U.S. citizenship so long as they meet the requirements.
If you’re considering an application for lawful permanent residency but aren’t sure about your eligibility, criminal history, or other factors that could hinder your case, contact an experienced green card lawyer in Los Angeles.
At Best Immigration Lawyer in Los Angeles, our green card attorneys are here to help you apply and receive a green card as fast as possible under your current circumstances. Applying for permanent residency without a proven immigration lawyer can lead to unnecessary delays and denials. Don’t let it happen to you!What is “Lawful Permanent Resident” Status?
Lawful permanent residency (LPR) gives immigrants the right to work and live in the U.S. permanently. Additionally, lawful permanent residents in LA can potentially petition to have certain foreign-born relatives join them here in the U.S.
There are many ways to become a lawful permanent resident. They include the following:
- Family-based visas
- Employment sponsorship
- Refugee or Asylee status
- Diversity lottery
- Other immigration categories like investors, special persons, etc.
While lawful permanent residents do have rights, they are not U.S. citizens. That means that lawful permanent residents are not eligible for many public benefits, are not allowed to vote, and can potentially be deported.
If you’re an LPR facing a criminal conviction or immigration violation, it’s in your best interest to consult with an experienced attorney for lawful permanent residence in LA.What is a Green Card?
A green card, otherwise known as a Permanent Resident Card, is a photo identification card issued to lawful permanent residents. Anyone with a valid green card is an LPN. Unless you’ve applied for citizenship, green card renewal in Los Angeles is required every ten years unless otherwise instructed.Who is Eligible to Get a Green Card in LA?
To be eligible for a green card in LA, you must qualify through the appropriate visa. Some immigrant visa categories are based on employment. Others are based on family relationships or the threat of persecution (asylum).
Generally, the steps and eligibility requirements for each visa type depend on your visa category. However, certain things can disqualify you from obtaining a green card in LA regardless of your immigration status. They include, but are not limited to, the following:
- Your income or your sponsor’s income isn’t above 125% of the U.S. poverty level
- Health reasons
- Past immigration violations
- Criminal convictions
- National security threat
If you’re deemed inadmissible, there still may be an opportunity to pursue permanent residency. Speak with an LA lawyer for better guidance about how to best qualify.Lawful Permanent Resident Rights
While green card holders in LA are not considered U.S. citizens, they do have certain rights. Some of the most important rights to remember are:
- The right to live permanently in the U.S.
- The right to work in the U.S.
- The right to protection under all U.S. laws
It’s important to note that the rights listed above come with a caveat: you must obey the law, file your tax returns, support democracy, and register with the selective service (if 18 – 25 years old).Green Card Renewal in Los Angeles
Renewing or replacing your green card is typically a seamless process. However, if your circumstances have changed since your last renewal, it’s in your best interest to speak with a green card lawyer in Los Angeles before proceeding.
To renew your green card you must fill out Form I-90 and file it with USCIS. You can expect green card processing times to vary between 6 weeks to a year. For that reason, LPRs are recommended to apply for green card renewal in LA at least a year in advance.