Deciding to immigrate is a major decision, but like any dream worth pursuing, living and working in the United States can be challenging. If you are planning to apply for a green card, then you probably have a long list of questions:


  • What does the process entail?
  • How long will it take to receive a decision on my application?
  • What rights will I have as a green card holder

Although the Internet is packed with information about U.S. green cards, much of it is outdated, ambiguous, misleading or plain untrue. Your best source of guidance is an immigration attorney.

If you are located in Kentucky, contact Rusty O’Brien. Mr. O’Brien is a Louisville green card lawyer who can explain the application process and help you avoid mistakes.

Call 502-400-7890 to schedule a consultation at the O’Brien Law Group. In the meantime, read on for a brief overview of the steps you will likely need to take when applying for a U.S. green card:

  1. Decide if you need legal assistance.

Although you can apply for a green card without an immigration attorney, this is not advisable. Even if you qualify for a green card, a small mistake could hurt your chances of approval. A green card lawyer can help you by:

  • Making sure you understand your immigration status;
  • Gathering the necessary supporting documents;
  • Preparing you for the interview;
  • And helping you avoid mistakes such as leaving the United States.
  1. Complete the Application for Prevailing Wage Determination.

If you are applying for your green card through an employer, he or she must complete the Application for Prevailing Wage Determination. The purpose of this document is to confirm that the wages an employer offers to a foreign worker are comparable to the average wages of employees in similar occupations. This helps maintain the working conditions and wages of U.S. workers.

  1. File the visa petition.

You will likely need to fill out either Form I-140 or I-130. Form I-140 is the Immigrant Petition for Alien Worker. Form I-130 is the Immigrant Petition for Alien Relative.

  1. Wait.

The United States only issues a limited number of green cards each year. Unfortunately, some applicants need to wait several months or years to receive approval.

The USCIS determines priority based on the application date. As such, it is important to file your application as soon as possible.

  1. Track your application.

You can now track certain elements of your application on the USCIS website. There, you will find a case status feature that highlights the progress of your application.

Applying for a green card can be a long and arduous process. If you have questions about living and working legally in the United States, contact the O’Brien Law Group.

Rusty O’Brien is a Louisville immigration attorney who can evaluate your goals, answer your questions, and provide legal guidance. Schedule a consultation today by calling 502-400-7890.

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