Do you daydream about maximizing your personal and professional potential in the land of the free and home of the brave? Earning a green card could be your one-way ticket to achieving your very own American Dream. Read on to learn more about the green card, its privileges and restrictions, as well as a brief background on the Green Card Lottery.
Sample green card
What is a green card?
- A green card grants foreigners the right to legally live and work in the United States. Formally called a United States Permanent Resident Card (USCIS Form I-551), the term ‘green card’ was colloquially given due to the color of the document, which actually ceased to be green from 1964-2010.
- Green card holders are designated as lawful permanent residents (LPRs), and they may use this status as a springboard from which they can apply for American citizenship. A number of conditions must be consistently met in order to maintain permanent resident status, and the document must accompany its possessor at all times.
What are the benefits of having a green card?
- The United States of America serves as a global beacon of hope, freedom, and opportunity. For centuries, people near and far have aspired to live in the United States for a multitude of reasons, including but certainly not limited to educational opportunities, religious freedom, and economic prosperity.
- Green cards allow internationals the legal right to take advantage of the many privileges that American democracy has to offer.
FDR Memorial Wall
What are the differences in status between a United States citizen and a lawful permanent resident?
- While lawful permanent residents are allowed to live and work freely in the United States, they have several limitations as compared to American citizens.
- LPRs are not allowed to vote in local, state, and national elections. International travel restrictions (i.e. time spent outside of the United States) also apply.
- LPRs must keep the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) updated on their contact details and other personal information. Failure to do so, as well as committing unlawful acts such as espionage and terrorism, may result in the loss of a green card and deportation back to the person’s native country.
What is the Green Card Lottery?
- The Green Card Lottery, also known as the Diversity Visa (DV) Lottery, is an annual drawing that allows citizens of certain countries to apply for and hopefully win green cards for themselves and their family members. Overseen by the US Department of State, only citizens of countries that currently have low rates of natural immigration to the US are eligible to apply (which are subject to change each year).
- Out of the millions of people who participate in the Green Card Lottery each year, only 55,000 are deemed winners.
- The Lottery was created with the inception of the Immigration Act of 1990—with the first drawing taking place in 1995—in order to promote diversity within the American population via federally regulated immigration.
Now that you know all about the American green card, allow the Global USA Green Card Organization to help you take the necessary steps to apply for the Lottery. Get in touch with GUSGC’s Immigration Specialists today to guide you through the process!