What Are the Differences in Employment-Based and Family-Based Immigration?
For foreigners who want to enter the United States of America legally, a few routes exist to allow entry pathways.
Employment-based and family-based immigration remains the most common pathways for entry. While both routes provide the same result – legal access – each has very different requirements and rules.
How Does Employment-Based Immigration Work?
When a business offers a non-U.S. citizen a job, they can take advantage of employment-based immigration to receive a green card. Much of the work for employment-based immigration lands on the employer.
First, to initiate the employment-based immigration process, the employer who offered the job requests a prevailing wage determination (PWD) from the U.S. Department of Labor, using the online FLAG system. Then, in good faith, the company must advertise and recruit for the immigrant’s job to determine that no qualified U.S. workers exist who would be qualified or willing to take the role. Then, the business must file a PERM labor
certification application online. This process will take several months, so be prepared to wait. The PERM application can take 180 days, and then once approved, immigrants must wait for a visa to become available.
Once the visa becomes available, then the burden of work shifts to the foreign employee. Next, the worker needs to file a green card application.
Usually, the process includes an interview at a local immigration office if the worker already lives in the United States. If they live abroad, the interview will take place at a U.S. consulate abroad.
After the interview, the immigration visa will be granted.
How Does Family-Based Immigration Work?
Immigrants can enter the U.S. legally when another U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident sponsors a qualified relative to receive a green card. The sponsor needs to fill out the Form I-130 Petition for Alien Relative.
The I-130 petition costs $535 to file for 2020. The U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident may sponsor a few family members on this one form.
Affidavits will need to be signed, and all parties must provide proof of relation. Then, the relative must mail the form to a USCIS processing center.
The I-130 process can take anyway from a few weeks to several months, depending on the backlog the USCIS faces.
How Should I Handle The Immigration Process?
If you want to have legal residency in the United States, reach out to the legal team at Fay Grafton to help with your case. Our team has deep experience in immigration law and can help you navigate your case, ensure you’ve completed all the proper steps, and aid in simplifying the process for you.
Immigration law is complex and nuanced. The rules change frequently, and there are many exceptions. Having a lawyer from Fay Grafton on your side will help you and your family feel set up to complete the immigration process successfully.