If you are outside the United States and are eligible to apply for permanent resident status, then you may apply for an immigrant visa. If approved, you will enter the United States as a permanent resident and you will receive a green card.
The immigrant visa process typically involves a petition from a qualifying relative. You might also qualify to apply for an immigrant visa if you have been the victim of a crime in the United States or have been abused by your U.S. citizen or permanent resident spouse or parent.
For many people, eligibility to apply for an immigrant visa is based on marriage. In most cases, U.S. immigration officials recognize any marriage that was lawfully conducted wherever the marriage took place, including same-sex marriages.
U.S. immigration officials, however, do not recognize marriages to more than one person at the same time. In order to have your marriage legally recognized by U.S. immigration officials, all previous marriages must be terminated prior to your current marriage.
If the visa petition from your relative is approved, then you may apply for an immigrant visa. Depending on your particular situation, you may need to wait a certain period of time before you are eligible to apply for an immigrant visa.
After initial processing of your application, you will be scheduled for an interview at a U.S. consulate or embassy in the country where you are residing.
Applying for an immigrant visa often involves complex legal issues and legal analysis of your particular situation and history. Our office has extensive experience in handling immigrant visa applications and in reviewing the histories of potential applicants to determine if you are likely to be approved for an immigrant visa, or if you may need a waiver in order to be approved.