What is a Green Card?
While it may not be immediately obvious, the green card which allows foreign nationals to become permanent residents of the United States actually has quite a lot to do with business. The green card not only allows an alien to live in the United States – it also allows that person to seek employment. In most cases, for an alien to be a long-term employee in the United States, he or she must have a green card.
Who Gets a Green Card?
Green cards aren’t exactly handed out at customs. There’s an involved process that must be followed for a foreign national to obtain a green card in the first place. Because the United States has placed a quota on immigration, green cards are strictly limited based on the perceived desirability of the applicant. What this means is that the government is more likely to issue a green card to a woman with a degree in biomedical engineering than to an unemployed man without a high school degree.
If you’re looking to hire a foreign national at your company, you should know the steps it takes to get that employee a green card. First, you as the employer must file a petition for your prospective employee. Second, there must be an available visa number to be issued to your employee. Because the government has immigration quotas based on the country of birth, this step may take longer if your employee comes from a country like Djibouti rather than, say, France. Once a visa number becomes available, the immigrant can apply to have his or her status changed to permanent resident.
If you are a business owner interested in knowing more about how the green card process can affect your employees, contact the Austin employment lawyers of The Melton Law Firm, by calling (512) 330-0017.