Immigration law encompasses a wide range of situations
that involve a person from a foreign country coming to the United States, whether for a temporary visit or with the intent to live permanently in the U.S. (as a citizen or as a legal permanent resident).
Those who wish to visit the United States for a short time and do not intend to work have a number of “non-immigrant” visa options. Those wishing to work in the United States may apply for one of several different kinds of employment-based immigrant or non-immigrant visas.
The “green card” is the common term for Lawful Permanent Residency, a status that permits indefinite presence in the United States, the ability to enter and exit the country with few restrictions, and the ability to work or study without seeking permission. Residency is commonly obtained through a petition filed by a family member or employer on the beneficiary’s behalf.
Citizenship, when not acquired by birth, is available to lawful permanent residents of good moral character through the “naturalization” process.