Green Card Through Employment

140,000 persons can obtain a green card through employment under US immigration law each year. This includes the employee and his/her immediate family members (spouse and unmarried children under the age of 21). Persons born in a particular country cannot use more than 7% of the quota in each of the 5 employment-based (EB) categories. This has led to long backlogs in the EB categories for persons born in India and China.

You can stay up-to-date with the waiting times in the Visa Bulletin by subscribing to our Free E-Mail Newsletter.

In general, before an EB-2 or EB-3 preference petition on behalf of a prospective immigrant can be submitted to the US Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS), an employer must obtain the approval of a PERM application issued by the US Department of Labor. This is a determination that no minimally-qualified US workers are ready, willing and able to fill the job, and that the employment of an immigrant will not adversely affect the wages and working conditions of US workers.


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For some categories of employment-based green cards, the employer need not go through the PERM process.  These include persons in the EB-1 category, those in the EB-2 category who qualify as Persons of Exceptional Ability or for National Interest Waivers, and Schedule A shortage occupations including Registered Nurses and Physical Therapists.

Those who qualify as Persons of Extraordinary Ability or for National Interest Waivers may “self-petition” for green cards without employer sponsorship.

Green Card Through Employment is divided into the following sub-topics:

Videos – Green Card Through Employment

  • How to Obtain a Green Card Through Employment – Immigration Attorney Carl Shusterman (former INS Attorney, 1976-82) explains the EB-1, EB-2, EB-3 and EB-4 preference categories and how to obtain permanent residence through each of these categories.





  • Employment-Based Green Cards: An Overview – Attorney Carl Shusterman (Former INS Attorney 1976-82) explains employment-based visa categories: EB-1 (priority workers), EB-2 (advanced degrees), EB-3 (professionals, skilled and unskilled workers), EB-4 (religious workers, et al), EB-5 (investors).




Success Stories – Green Card Through Employment

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Green Cards Through Employment: General Resources

Practice Advisories on Green Card Through Employment

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