In order to enter the United States and be admitted as a permanent resident, foreign nationals must obtain an approved immigrant petition and have an immigrant visa number.


When an immigration visa number becomes available to an individual with an approved immigrant petition (Form I-130 or Form I-140), one can apply at a US Department of State Consulate, in their home country, with certain limited exceptions, for an immigrant visa. This type of admission to the US is referred to as Consular Processing.


There are several steps involved in the Consular Processing procedure:

  • Determine the basis for immigration 
  • Once an immigrant petition is approved, depending on the category
  • Wait for a visa number
  • Once a visa number has become available, the case is forwarded to the National Visa Center (NVC)
  • Arrange an appointment at consulate
  • NVC Visa Packets are sent out for completion
  • Applicant is interviewed at consulate


Upon arrival in the U.S., individuals who have been granted an immigrant visa must present their unopened Visa Packet to the Customs and Border Protection officer at their port of entry.


Immigrants are then mailed their green card within 30 days of their arrival in the U.S.



Adjustment of Status.

If foreign nationals are already in the US, they can apply for permanent resident status without having to return to their home country to complete processing. This process is called Adjustment of Status.


Processing times vary for both procedures.


We will analyze your case in order to determine whether to file for an adjustment of status in the United States or to return home for Consular Processing.

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CONSULAR PROCESSING

  • Foreign nationals seeking to enter the U.S. as permanent residents must obtain an approved immigrant petition and have an immigrant visa number.
  • Foreign nationals that are already in the U.S. can apply for permanent resident status without having to return to their home country to complete processing.