United States Citizenship through Naturalization

Consular Processing - US immigration lawyer in Milwaukee, Wisconsin

Many foreign nationals living abroad dream of coming to the United States. Coming to the United States means the chance to pursue freedom, happiness, and economic opportunity. To this end, we offer our clients a passionate US immigration lawyer in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, excited to be part of this process. Our immigration attorneys are proud to serve for hopeful immigrants living abroad and their sponsors.

Green Card Eligibility Assistance by a US Immigration lawyer in Milwaukee, Wisconsin

We recognize that hopeful immigrants and their families are looking for their chance to legally enter the United States in search of their dreams, and their green card. Once your immigrant visa petition is approved, you will be informed an immigrant visa number is immediately available. Then, you may apply at the US Consulate abroad to receive your immigration visa to be admitted to the United States as a permanent resident. Contact us to find out if you are eligible for consular processing to obtain your green card.

FAQ: Consular Processing for Immigrants to the United States

  • What are the possible bases to immigrate to the US?
  • What are the steps for consular processing?
  • When will I be eligible to get a green card through consular processing?
  • How can I check my status?
  • What happens when I get a decision on my immigrant visa petition?

How to obtain Legal Permanent Residency (LRP) and become a green card holder through Consular Processing

What are the possible bases to immigrate to the United States?
Family-based immigration options

Family sponsored immigration petitions must be filed by a relative who is a US citizen or legal permanent resident using an I-130, Petition for Alien Relative form. 

​Employment-based immigration options

Work sponsored immigration categories must generally be filed by a prospective employer using an I-140, Petition for Alien Worker form.  Entrepreneurs can file for themselves if they plan to make a significant financial investment in a business venture using an I-526, Immigrant Petition by Alien Entrepreneur form.

Special classes of immigrants

 an I-360, Petition for Amerasian, Widow(er), and Special Immigrant form may be filed by

  • Amerasians
  • The widow or widower of deceased U.S. citizen within 2 years of after the death of your spouse
  • victim of domestic violence who is the spouse or child of a U.S. Citizen or Lawful Permanent Resident
  • A special immigrant, defined as: 
    •  Religious Worker
    • Employees of the Panama Canal Company, Canal Zone Government employee, U.S. Government in the Canal Zone employee
    • Physician
    • Family Members or Employees of International Organizations
    • Juvenile Court Dependent
    • Armed Forces Member
    • Afghan or Iraqi nationals who supported the U.S. Armed Forces as a translator
    • Afghan national who worked for the U.S. government in Afghanistan
Humanitarian programs

Most humanitarian programs do not require a petition for consular processing but must meet certain eligibility requirements to become eligible for adjustment of status.  If you think you may qualify for a humanitarian program in Wisconsin, contact a US immigration lawyer in Milwaukee.

What are the steps for consular processing to get a green card?
1. Determine what specific immigrant category you fit in.  

Review the immigration categories and requirements above for a good summary of possible classifications to immigrate for which you may be eligible.  Your Wisconsin immigration attorney will also review your situation to help you determine what petitions may be available to you. Your US immigration lawyer in Milwaukee, Wisconsin will also advise you of the expected timelines for each potential petition.  While most people only file one immigration petition at a time, you could file more. It is possible to file multiple immigration petitions simultaneously in different categories where you qualify.

2. File your petition for an immigration visa.  
3. Wait for the decision on your visa petition.  

You will be notified of the decision USCIS makes on your eligibility for your visa.  If USCIS approves your petition, they send your information to the US State Department National Visa Center.  Therefore, be sure to contact the Visa Center if there is a change in your personal situation or if you change your address.  It is especially important to notify the National Visa Center if a child beneficiary reaches age 21. Similarly, it is important to notify the National Visa Center if any beneficiary has a change in marital status. Either of the aforementioned events can affect visa eligibility or availability.

4. Wait to be notified that your visa number will be available.  

When USCIS approves your visa petition it forwards your information to the U.S. Department of State National Visa Center where it will stay until a visa number is available.  The National Visa Center will notify you when your immigrant visa number is about to be available.  Specifically, the center will notify both the petitioner and the recipient of the visa petition of the upcoming availability for the visa. Similarly, the center will inform you when to submit immigration visa processing fees and supporting documentation.​  However, certain events can affect visa eligibility and availability.  Be sure to contact the National Visa Center if you change your address. Similarly, notify the National Visa Center if there is a change in your personal situation or marital status. Finally, be sure to notify the National Visa Center if a child beneficiary reaches age 21.  

5. Appear at your consular interview. 

Your consulate will schedule an interview when the beneficiary’s priority date is current or a visa is available.  Specifically, the beneficiary must attend this appointment at the consular office.  A consular official will complete the application’s processing and decide whether to grant the immigrant visa.  If the consular official grants your visa, the official will give you a “Visa Packet.” You must present the visa packet to the Customs and Border Protection Officer when you enter the United States.  Do not open the Visa Packet.  

6. Lawfully enter the United States as a Permanent Resident.  

When you enter the United States you must give your Visa Packet to the Customs Officer at the port of entry.  You will be inspected by customs.  If you are found admissible you will be admitted to the United States as an immigrant with permanent residency. When you enter the United States as a legal permanent resident you are able to permanently live and work in the US.

When will I receive my green card?

​The green card will be mailed to you and you should receive it within 30 days of your arrival.  

How can I check my status?

​You may check visa availability and prior dates online here.  If you have a specific question about your petition you may call the USCIS National Customer Service Center at 1-800-375-5283 or check your application’s status online at “My Case Status“.  

What happens if my visa petition is denied?

​The decision you receive in the mail will indicate if you can appeal the denial of your petition to immigrate to the United States or file a motion to reopen or reconsider the denial of your immigrant visa.  Some decisions can not be appealed.  If you are able to appeal the decision to deny your visa, the appeal must be filed by the visa petitioner, not the beneficiary of the visa (unless you are a self-petitioner).  

If you are able to appeal the decision to denying your legal permanent residency your appeal must normally be filed within 30 days of being served with the decision. However, some cases have shorter appeal deadlines and extensions are not available. We advise you to contact an immigration lawyer if you are considering appealing a denial. Our United States immigration lawyer in Milwaukee, Wisconsin stands ready to assist you with appeals or motions to reopen or reconsider adverse immigration decisions. Both appeals and motions to reopen or reconsider must normally be filed using a Notice of Appeal or Motion, form I-290B. However, some appeals also use Form N-336 or EOIR-29.

Finally, contact US immigration lawyers at our law firm in Milwaukee are here to assist you with any of your Wisconsin immigration law needs today. Also, visit our US Immigration Resources Page for more information.