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Guillermo J. Senmartin, Esq.
Guillermo J. Senmartin, Esq., Immigration Lawyer
Category: Immigration Law
Satisfied Customers: 108691
Experience:  10+ years of experience in various aspects of U.S. Immigration Law.
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Can I apply residency in the USA as a visitor

Customer Question

Hi, can I apply for permanent residency in the USA as a visitor if I buy a house in the USA?
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Immigration Law
Expert:  Guillermo J. Senmartin, Esq. replied 2 years ago.
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Unfortunately, no. There was talk of passing such a law where if one purchased a home of over $400,000 in value, they could get Residency status, however, that never was approved. So for now, there are basically 5 ways for you to obtain U.S. Lawful Permanent Residency status. They are through family, through employment, through Asylum or refugee process, through investment, or through the lottery.
For family, it must be immediate family such as U.S. Citizen spouse or U.S. Citizen children over 21 in order to be able to come immediately. U.S. Citizen or Lawful Permanent Resident parents or U.S. Citizen siblings, or Lawful Permanent Resident spouses can also help you, but the wait for that is about 4 to 12 years or so.
Through employment, you would have to generally prove that you would not be taking away a job from a U.S. worker and the less experience and education you have, the harder that is to do.
Through Asylum or Refugee process, you must prove that you will be persecuted, tortured or killed if you stay in your country and that this will happen to you because of your nationality, race, religion, political opinion, or membership in a particular social group, not because you would run the same risk as anyone else in your country to fall victim to a crime or bad economic conditions.
Through investment, you are looking at generally $1,000,000.00 for a residency, or $500,000.00 in an area designated as a high-employment area, plus in both cases the investment has to create 10 or more jobs for U.S. workers.
And through the lottery, it would be very difficult to win one of the 50,000 visas available per year and some countries do not qualify.
Here is a link to the different forms to get a green card:
http://www.uscis.gov/greencard
Then there are some visas available where you can stay temporarily and then later change to Lawful Permanent Residency if you qualify.
Some of the visas available through employment (if you have a job offer and you qualify) are:
H-1B for professional workers
H-2A for seasonal agricultural workers
H-2B for seasonal nonagricultural workers
H-3 for industrial trainees
Then there are the F-1 and M-1 for students and J-1 for exchange visitors.
And then there is the E-1 for treaty traders and E-2 for treaty investors (these types of visas are not available in all countries).
Here is a link to most of the available visas:
http://travel.state.gov/content/visas/english/general/visa-wizard.html
So there are options, but none are easy.
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Expert:  Guillermo J. Senmartin, Esq. replied 2 years ago.
Hello. I'm just following up with you to see how everything is going. Did my answer help? Please let me know. Thank you!
Expert:  Guillermo J. Senmartin, Esq. replied 2 years ago.
Thank you for your kindness and respect. Good luck to you.