What does a green card look like?
Old version (2008):
Immigration eligibility and quotas
|Category||Eligibility||Annual Quota||Immigrant Visa Backlog|
|IR||Immediate relative of U.S. citizens:
IR1: spouses of a U.S. citizen;
IR2: minor children of a U.S. citizen;
IR0: parents of a U.S. citizen.
|No numerical limita|
|F1||Unmarried sons and daughters (21 years of age or older) of U.S. citizens||23,400||8–9 yearsb|
|F2A||Spouses and minor children (under 21 year old) of lawful permanent residents||87,934||2–3 yearsb|
|F2B||Unmarried sons and daughters (21 years of age or older) of lawful permanent residents||26,266||8–9 yearsb|
|F3||Married sons and daughters of U.S. citizens||23,400||10 yearsb|
|F4||Brothers and sisters of adult U.S. citizens||65,000||14 yearsb|
|EB1||Priority workers. There are three sub-groups:
E11 and E16: Foreign nationals with extraordinary ability in sciences, arts, education, business, or athletics
E12 and E17: Foreign nationals that are outstanding professors or researchers with at least three years' experience in teaching or research and who are recognized internationally.
E13 and E18: Foreign nationals that are managers and executives subject to international transfer to the United States.
|EB2||E21 and E26: Professionals holding advanced degrees (Ph.D., master's degree, or at least 5 years of progressive post-baccalaureate experience) or persons of exceptional ability in sciences, arts, or business
||40,000||currently available except for individuals from China and India (5 years)b|
|EB3||E31 and E36: Skilled workers;
E32 and E37: professionals holding a bachelor's degree or who is a member of a profession.
|EB4||Certain special immigrants—ministers, religious workers, current or former U.S. government workers, etc.||10,000||currently available|
|Diversity Immigrant (Green Card Lottery)||50,000|
|Political Asylum||No numerical limit|
|a 300,000–500,000 immediate relatives admitted annually.
b No more than 7 percent of the visas may be issued to natives of any one country. Currently, individuals from China (mainland), India, Mexico and the Philippines are subject to per-country quotas in most of the categories, and the waiting time may take longer. As of June 2009, in some categories, USCIS is still processing applications filled in 2001.
Want to learn moare about green card category codes? Please visit our Category Codes page.