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How to get a Green Card from outside the U.S.

To live and work in the U.S. permanently, you will need a Permanent Resident Card (Green Card). Learn how to get one through consular processing if you are outside the U.S.

Learn if you are eligible for a Green Card

Your eligibility to get a Green Card depends on many factors. These include your employment plans and the citizenship status of a family member who would sponsor you.

  1. Visit the website and learn about Green Card eligibility categories to see if you qualify.

  2. Select the category that applies to you.

  3. Expand the selected category that matches your situation under "you may be eligible to apply as a…" for eligibility and how to apply.

Apply for a Green Card through consular processing

Apply for a Green Card from outside the U.S. through a U.S. Department of State consulate. This procedure is known as consular processing.

Learn how consular processing works, including:

  • Determining what Green Card category you might be eligible for
  • Filing your immigrant petition
  • Finding which forms and documents you will need
  • Preparing for in-person appointments you may have with the consular office
  • Estimating when you will receive your Green Card

Find out the cost of getting a Green Card 

You will need to pay a visa application processing fee and an affidavit of support fee when you apply for an immigrant visa.

LAST UPDATED: December 8, 2023


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