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Lorenzo Law Group

How do I convert my work visa to a green card?

How do I convert my work visa to a green card?

If you’re like most foreign workers in the United States, then you’re probably counting down the days until you’re eligible for a green card.

One of the most important factors for changing a “temporary” work visa like the H-1B into a green card is establishing permanent residency, meaning you are living and working in the United States for a given period of time.

H1-B visas are a gateway to the US because they are considered “dual intent” visas. You may enter with the intent to both work and later become a citizen. But how exactly does that work?

How do I convert my work visa to a green card?

If you currently live and work in the United States on an H1-B visa, you may be eligible to apply for permanent residence and get a green card.

Here’s the process in a nutshell:

  • Your employer applies for a PERM Certification
  • You or an immigration attorney submit Form I-140, Immigration Petition for Alien Worker
  • You or your attorney submit Form I-485, commonly called adjustment of status

Once your green card is approved, you will be notified and later receive your green card in the mail.

Are there business visas that automatically grant green cards?

Immigrants wishing to skip the middle step of working and establishing residence in the US may, in some situations, apply for permanent business visas, such as the EB category:

  • EB-1: immigrants with exceptional talent such as executives, athletes, educators, etc.
  • EB-2: Master’s degree recipients in science, education or medicine
  • EB-3: Bachelor’s degree holders with two years of work experience, or Master’s degree holders not included in the EB-2
  • EB-4: religious workers and US Foreign Service employees
  • EB-5: certain investors (must invest at least $900,000 in an American company with at least ten employees)

EB visas can be harder to obtain than H1-B visas because EB visa recipients are automatically eligible for a green card after immigrating.

Are there other temporary work visas?

There are many temporary work visas similar to the H1-B visa.

Depending on your situation, you may be eligible to apply for visas specific to agriculture, as a trainee, for education purposes, etc.

Certain athletes and entertainers are eligible for temporary work visas, as well.

How long will it take to change my H1-B visa to a green card?

Expect for your application to take a while. It could be anywhere from 6 months to 2 years before your green card is approved.

Acquiring your PERM Certificate alone can take up to a year and a half in some cases, while waiting for your I-140 to be processed depends on your country of origin and priority date.

Should I hire a lawyer for my H1-B visa or green card?

The entire process of immigrating to the US for work—and eventually obtaining residence and citizenship—is long and complicated.

Luckily, Lorenzo Law Group has a track record of helping hundreds of immigrants process business visa applications and obtain green cards.

If you need help submitting an error-free H1-B or green card application ASAP, contact us right away. We’ll help bring your American Dream to life.


Hi I'm Carlos Lorenzo, owner and lead attorney at Lorenzo Law Group. Immigration applications are tough, exhausting and confusing. Which is why I started this firm. We'll handle your case quickly, affordably, and accurately from start to finish. Reach out today and let's get to work.

*The information provided on this website does not, and is not intended to, constitute legal advice; instead, all information, content, and materials available on this site are for general informational purposes only.

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