How to migrate to the USA

To migrate to the USA, most immigrant visas require the applicant to be sponsored by a US citizen, US permanent resident, or a US employer.

Many people across the globe choose to immigrate to the USA. The sponsor initiates the process by submitting a petition to US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) on behalf of the international client.

For further information on US immigrant visas, including:

For the Diversity Visa Program, see the Directory of Visa Categories.

This article will show you how to enter the United States in 2023. We’ll talk about the many immigration programs out there and help you figure out which one is right for you.

How to migrate to the USA

Do you wish to immigrate to the United States or sponsor someone else to do so?

The United States issues immigration visas according to the following:




Special immigrant categories and;

The diversity visa is a valid ground for obtaining permanent residency in the United States. Select an icon to see related content.

Family Green Cards

If you have a family member who is either a US citizen of the United States or a lawful permanent resident of another country.

This indicates that your petitioner for immigration purposes is a citizen or LPR (I-130, Petition for Alien Relative) of the United States who is your spouse, parent, child, or sibling. As the number of family-based immigration petitions from each nation is limited, not all applications will be processed. Your close family, however, will not be subject to such restrictions.

You may apply for these family-based visas without the limit:

IR-1: For the spouse of a US citizen.

IR-2: Child of a US citizen under 21 who is unmarried.

IR-3: Adopted by a US citizen from an orphanage outside the US.

IR-4: An orphan who a US citizen will adopt in the USA.

IR-5: Parents of US citizens over the age of 21.


Employment-based green cards allow foreign people with in-demand abilities to permanently stay in the United States, provided they have a work offer from a US firm willing to sponsor their application. There are different standards and application procedures for different types of immigrants, such as:

Priority laborers.

Highly qualified professionals and;

Exceptional immigrants.

Although challenging, a green card via job is a desirable alternative for those who qualify.

Also, read US Jobs With Visa Sponsorship

Permanent residence is available with the following work green cards:

EB-1: This group includes people with unique skills, excellent teachers and researchers, and global leaders and managers.

EB-2: This group comprises people with advanced degrees and remarkable talent in science, art, or business.

EB-3: In this group are trained workers, professionals, and other non-seasonal or temporary workers.

EB-4: Includes ministers, journalists, and other professionals in the religious and media industries, among others.

EB-5: This category comprises foreign people who invest a minimum amount of money in a US commercial firm that produces employment.

These work visas enable temporary US employment:

H-1B Visa: This visa is for overseas workers in specialty jobs that need specialized expertise and a bachelor’s degree.

L-1 Visa: This visa is for people who work for a company with offices in the United States and other countries.

E-3 Visa: This visa is for Australians who want to work in the United States in jobs that require special skills.

TN Visa: This visa is for Canadian and Mexican NAFTA professionals.

O Visa: This visa is for exceptional talent in science, arts, education, business, or sports.

P Visa: This visa is for sports, performers, and artists performing in the US.

R Visa: This visa is for religious employees working for voluntary religious organizations in the US.

Check How to Apply For a US H-1B Work Visa

Green Cards for Humanitarian Purposes

A humanitarian-based green card is a type of permanent residency or temporary status available to people who have faced persecution or significant hardship in their home country or the US. This program is open to refugees, victims of human trafficking, asylees, and others with special visas or humanitarian parole.

To qualify for a humanitarian-based green card, applicants must meet specific criteria set by US immigration laws.

For humanitarian reasons, the following green cards are available:

  1. T visa
  2. U visa
  3. VAWA Green Card

Which visas does the USA offer

US immigration law determines your visa type based on your trip purpose. US visas fall into two categories:

Nonimmigrant visas and;

Immigrant visas.

Visas for Immigrants vs. Nonimmigrants

The two kinds of visas are distinct in important ways:

Immigrant Visa

The process of immigrating to the USA may take several forms. The most frequent definition of immigration to the United States is becoming a permanent resident or “green card” holder. If you have a green card, you can work for any company you like, and if you meet the other conditions, you may apply for US citizenship.

Nonimmigrant visas

Temporary US residency is another possibility. Work, trips, and study are eligible. You may extend most nonimmigrant visas. However, immigrant visas give permanent residence.

Procedures for immigration to the USA

The whole visa application procedure is highly individualized. However, this is a high-level summary of the steps required to immigrate to the United States.

  1. Select a Visa Type
  2. Meet all visa criteria
  3. Pay for the expense of the application.
  4. Submit an application for the visa.
  5. Wait for your application results.
  6. Migrate to the USA.

Diversity Visa Lottery

The US holds an annual lottery for the Diversity Visa Program, which randomly selects up to 55,000 applicants. This program promotes diversity in the US immigrant population. To qualify, you must come from a country with low immigration rates to the USA and meet specific requirements, including:

Possessing a diploma from high school or its equivalent is required.

Two years of work experience in a qualifying occupation and;

Passing a background check.

This is how to migrate to the USA through the diversity visa lottery.

Requirements for Immigration

Here are the general requirements for most US visas:

  1. Valid Passport
  2. Nonimmigrant Intent
  3. Petition
  4. Consular Interview
  5. Financial Support
  6. English Language Proficiency
  7. Medical Exam
  8. Clean Criminal Record

How can I be allowed to live in the US legally

Foreigners may lawfully reside in the US via numerous immigration procedures:

Family sponsorship.

Company sponsorship and;

Diversity lottery green cards are the most popular.

There are several temporary US living alternatives. Temporary jobs, studies, and investor choices are examples.

Benefits of emigrating to the US

Consider these advantages before making your big journey!

  1. Diversity: The US is diverse, with people from all over the world living there, creating a multicultural society.
  2. Education: World-class education is accessible to immigrants, leading to better job prospects and higher salaries.
  3. US Citizenship: Obtaining US citizenship or a green card provides security and stability and the ability to live and work in the country without a visa or work permit.
  4. Working in the USA: The job market in the US is diverse and dynamic and offers high salaries and career advancement opportunities.

Source: US Department of State

The cover image is in Atlanta, GA, USA. Photo by Jeffery Erhunse on Unsplash


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