US Green Card: Outstanding Researcher Permanent Residence
An Outstanding Researcher or Professor, classification applies to aliens who are internationally recognized as exceptional in a particular scientific or scholarly field. An employer petitions on behalf of an alien, demonstrating that the alien has secured a permanent job offer with the employer and that the alien will continue his or her demonstrably “outstanding” abilities as a researcher or professor in that capacity.
The person seeking permanent resident status on the basis of Outstanding Researcher classification must have secured the requisite job offer with the sponsoring employer filing the petition on the alien’s behalf.
Obtaining permanent residence as an Outstanding Researcher is a two-step process involving: 1) an immigrant petition filed with US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS); and 2) a visa interview at a US consular post abroad OR an application to adjust status within the US.
Within approximately one month of being granted permanent resident status, you will receive your permanent resident card, also known as a green card, which will serve as ongoing evidence of your permanent resident status. The permanent resident card is typically valid for ten years; after which time you will need to apply for renewal of the permanent resident card.
In order to maintain permanent residence, you must continue to reside in the US. Long-term or frequent travel outside the US may lead to unintentional abandonment of permanent resident status. It is therefore prudent to seek legal advice prior to engaging in significant travel outside the US.
Permanent residence may also be revoked following the commission of serious offenses.
US Green Card: Other Employment-based Permanent Residence Paths
If you are unable to provide sufficient evidence documenting your extraordinary ability or if you are not a multinational manager or an outstanding researcher, you may be qualified through alternative employment-based routes to permanent residence detailed in USCIS’ employment-based second and third preference categories.
In general, in order to qualify for the occupational categories detailed below, you must: 1) have a full-time job offer in the US; and 2) be performing work for which no qualified workers are available.
The category under which you qualify will determine when you may apply for permanent residence based on available immigrant numbers.
US Green Card: Through Marriage Permanent Residence
A US citizen may sponsor their non-US citizen spouse for permanent residence which will allow their spouse to legally work and reside in the US. If the US citizen and his/her spouse are outside the US, it will be necessary for the spouse to obtain an immigrant visa to enter the US as a permanent resident.
Obtaining an immigrant visa is a two-step process involving: 1) an immigrant petition filed with US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS); and 2) a visa interview at a US consular post abroad. Details can be found here.
Within approximately one month of his/her initial entry to the US the non-US citizen spouse will receive his/her permanent resident card, also known as a green card, which will serve as ongoing evidence of his/her permanent resident status. The permanent resident card is typically valid for ten years, after which time the non-US citizen spouse will need to apply for renewal of the permanent resident card. However, if the non-US citizen spouse has been granted conditional permanent residence the permanent resident card will be valid for two years.
Conditional permanent residence is granted when a US-citizen and non-US citizen spouse have been married for less than two years prior to the date that the non-US citizen spouse was admitted to the US as a permanent resident. In order for the non-US citizen spouse to maintain permanent residence beyond two years he/she must apply to remove the conditions within the 90-day period before the permanent resident card expires.
Beneficiaries of employment-based immigrant petitions who have been permanent residents for at least five years may be eligible for naturalization. Beneficiaries of marriage-based immigrant visas who have been permanent residents for at least three years may be eligible for naturalization.
In order to qualify, a permanent resident must:
- Meet continuous and physical presence requirements;
- Be able to read, write and speak English;
- Have an understanding of US history and government; and
- Be a person of good moral character.
Once a permanent resident has naturalized he/she will be entitled to all the rights and privileges granted to US citizens.