Many foreign nationals living abroad dream of coming to the United States for the chance to pursue freedom, happiness, and economic opportunity.  Our passionate immigration attorneys in Milwaukee and Waukesha, WI are excited to be part of this process for hopeful immigrants living abroad looking for their chance to legally enter the United States in search of their dreams.  Once your immigrant visa petition is approved and you are informed an immigrant visa number is immediately available, you may apply at the US Consulate abroad to receive your immigration visa to be admitted to the United States as a permanent resident.  Contact us to find out if you are eligible for consular processing to obtain your green card.
For an initial consultation with Wisconsin lawyers doing their best to help with your US immigration issues or concerns, 
contact our immigration lawyers in Milwaukee or Waukesha, WI.  Also visit our immigration law resources page.  We have lawyers available to help with all your other legal needs.  

Consular Processing to become a Legal Permanent Resident

Immigration Lawyers in Milwaukee, WI

Green Card Eligibility Assistance

How to obtain Legal Permanent Residency (LRP) and become a green card holder through Consular Processing:

​What are the possible basis to immigrate to the United States?
  • ​Family based immigration options:  family sponsored immigration petitions must be filed by a relative who is a US citizen or legal permanent resident using an I-130, Petition for Alien Relative form. 
  • ​Employment based immigration options:  work sponsored immigration categories must generally be filed by a prospective employer using an I-140, Petition for Alien Worker form.  Entrepreneurs can file for themselves if they plan to make a significant financial investment in a business venture using an I-526, Immigrant Petition by Alien Entrepreneur form.
  • Special classes of immigrants:  an I-360, Petition for Amerasian, Widow(er), and Special Immigrant form may be filed by
          1.  Amerasians
          2.  A widow or widower of deceased U.S. citizen within 2                      years of after death of your spouse
          3.  A victim of domestic violence who is the spouse or child                  of a U.S. Citizen or Lawful Permanent Resident
          4.  A special immigrant, defined as: 
               - Religious Worker
               - Employees of the Panama Canal Company, Canal Zone                      Government employee, U.S. Government in the Canal                      Zone employee, 
               - Physician
               - Family Members or Employees of International                                Organizations
               - Juvenile Court Dependent
               - Armed Forces Member
               - Afghan or Iraqi nationals who supported the U.S. Armed                    Forces as a translator
               - Afghan national who worked for the U.S. government in                  Afghanistan
  • Humanitarian programs:  most humanitarian programs do not require a petition for consular processing but must meet certain eligibility requirements to become eligible for adjustment of status.  

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What are the steps for consular processing to get a green card?
  • Determine what specific immigrant category you fit in.  Review the immigration categories and requirements above for a good summary of possible classifications to immigrate for which you may be eligible.  Our immigration attorneys will also review your situation to help you determine whatpetitions may be available to you and the expected timelines for each.  While most people only file one immigrationpetition at a time, it is possible to file multiple immigration petitions ,in different categories where you qualify.
  • File your petition for an immigration visa.  
  • Wait for the decision on your visa petition.  You will be notified of the decision USCIS makes on your eligibility for your visa.  If it is approved, your visa will be sent to the US State Department National Visa Center.  Be sure to contact the Visa Center if there is a change in your personal situation or if you change your address.  It is especially important to notify the National Visa Center if a child beneficiary reaches age 21, or if any beneficiary has a change in marital status, as that can affect visa eligibility or availability.
  • Wait to be notified that your visa number will be available.  If your visa petition was approved by USCIS it will be sent to the U.S. Department of State National Visa Center where it will stay until a visa number is available.  You will be notified by the center when your immigrant visa number is about to be available.  The center will notify both the petitioner and the recipient fo the visa petition of the upcoming availability for the visa, and when to submit immigration visa processing fees and supporting documentation.​  Certain events can affect visa eligibility and availability.  Be sure to contact the National Visa Center if you change your address, if there is a change in your personal situation/marital status, or if a child beneficiary reaches age 21.  
  • Appear at your consular interview.  Your consulate will schedule an interview when the beneficiary's priority date is current or a visa is available.  It is required to attend this appointment at the consular office.  A consular official will complete your application's processing and decide whether to grant  your immigrant visa.  If your visa is granted the official will give you a "Visa Packet" which must be presented to the Customs and Border Protection Officer when you enter the United States.  Do not open the Visa Packet.  
  • Lawfully enter the United States as a Permanent Resident.  When you enter the United States you must give your Visa Packet to the Customs Officer at the port of entry.  You will be inspected by customs.  If you are found admissible you will be admitted to the United States as an immigrant with permanent residency, able to permanently live and work in the US.

When will I receive my green card?
​The green card will be mailed to you and you should receive it within 30 days of your arrival.  

How can I check my status?
​You may check visa availability and prior dates online here.  If you have a specific question about your petition you may call the USCIS National Customer Service Center at 1-800-375-5283 or check your application's status online at "My Case Status".  

What happens if my visa petition is denied?
​The decision you receive in the mail will indicate if you can appeal the denial of your petition to immigrate to the United States, or file a motion to reopen or reconsider the denial of your immigrant visa.  Some decisions can not be appealed.  If you are able to appeal the decision to deny your visa, the appeal must be filed by the visa petitioner, not the beneficiary of the visa (unless you are a self-petitioner).  If you are able to appeal the decision to denying you legal permanent residency your appeal must normally be filed within 30 days of the decision having been served, but some cases have shorter appeal deadlines, and extensions are not available. Both appeals and motions to reopen/reconsider must normally be filed using a Notice of Appeal or Motion, form I-290B, but some also use Form N-336 or EOIR-29.
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