Paperback(Thirteenth Edition)

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The ultimate green card guide

The U.S. immigration system is an enormous bureaucracy, so it’s vital that you understand it before attempting to apply for a green card. Making a mistake can lead to delays and other hassles or even ruin your chances for success.

How to Get a Green Card provides everything you need to know about qualifying for permanent U.S. residence if you don’t have an employer sponsoring you.

Find out how to work with U.S. officials and prepare and present the right documents at the right time to get a green card through:

  • parents, siblings, or adult children
  • your spouse or fiancé
  • green card lotteries (diversity visa)
  • political asylum or refugee status
  • U visas, and
  • other categories.

The 13th edition covers the wind-down of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program and other new restrictions and procedural changes. It also includes samples of all the key application forms, updates on all required sponsor income levels, and more.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781413325379
Publisher: NOLO
Publication date: 07/30/2018
Edition description: Thirteenth Edition
Pages: 432
Product dimensions: 8.30(w) x 10.80(h) x 1.00(d)

About the Author

Ilona Bray, J.D. is an award-winning author and legal editor at Nolo, specializing in immigration law, real estate, and nonprofit fundraising. Many of her books are consistent Nolo bestsellers, among them Effective Fundraising for Nonprofits, U.S. Immigration Made Easy , and Nolo's Essential Guide to Buying Your First Home. She particularly enjoys interviewing people and weaving their stories into her books.

Bray's working background includes solo practice, nonprofit, and corporate stints, as well as long periods of volunteering, including an internship at Amnesty International's main legal office in London. She received her law degree and a Master's degree in East Asian (Chinese) Studies from the University of Washington. In her spare time she enjoys writing children’s books, going to open houses, and gardening.

Loida Nicolas Lewis is a former INS attorney with over 15 years’ experience handling U.S. immigration matters. Co-author of How to Get a Green Card , she is licensed to practice law in both New York and the Philippines.

Kristina Gasson is a Massachusetts attorney who represents immigrants in visa, green card, and removal matters, and is a contributing editor at

Table of Contents

Your Immigration Companion
1. Immigration Then and Now
2. All the Ways to Get a Green Card
3. Short-Term Alternatives to a Green Card
4. Will Inadmissibility Bar You From Getting a Green Card?
5. How Long You’ll Have to Wait
6. Fiancé and Fiancée Visas
7. Green Cards Through Marriage
8. Your Parents as Immigrants
9. Child Immigrants
10. Orphan Immigrants in Non-Hague-Convention Countries
11. The Diversity Visa Lottery
12. Your Brothers and Sisters as Immigrants
13. Refugees and Political Asylees
14. Military Veterans and Enlistees
15. Cancellation of Removal: Do Ten Illegal Years Equal One Green Card?
16. Adjustment of Status
17. Consular Processing
18. Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals
19. U Visas for Crime Victims Assisting Law Enforcement
20. Acquiring Citizenship Through U.S. Citizen Parents
21. Filling Out and Submitting Immigration Applications
22. Tracking Your Application Through the System
23. Keeping, Renewing, and Replacing Your Green Card
24. How to Find and Work With a Lawyer


Any kind of immigration-related application is complex, with too many opportunities for mistakes and complications. If you can afford an attorney to help with your immigration case, hiring one (an experienced one) may be the best way to go. Nevertheless, this book was written with the knowledge that many people cannot afford an attorney, or haven’t found one they want to hire. Reading this book is also an excellent way to explore your options before looking for an attorney.

No wonder the book has been popular with readers for years. What’s more, we make sure that every edition is completely reviewed, updated, and improved.

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