What Happens After Applying for a Green Card?

After finally submitting the green card application package, I did not know what to expect. I’ve dealt with immigration applications before, i.e. my F1 student visa, my OPT, and my H1B work visa, so I knew it was going to be a waiting game, but I didn’t really know what would happen next. Here is a little insight regarding what to expect post-submission.

Green card time line

  1. If you filled out the G-1145 e-Notification Application, you will receive a text message and email telling you they received your application and the process has started.
  2. Make sure you have money in your bank account, they will deposit the checks you mailed.
  3. You will get in the mail a receipt for each application. My A# didn’t match the A# on my H1B visa. I called them and they explained this is a different case and that is why they issued another A#. They will consolidate them later.
  4. You will receive a separate letter in the mail with information about the biometrics appointment.
  5. You will attend your biometrics appointment. You only need your passport and biometrics appointment letter (ONLY…can’t bring purse or anything else). The actual appointment at the USCIS Atlanta office was really quick.
  6. Check the status of your applications online. I was expecting for this to be a three-month process; however, in July (3 months later) I checked the status of my applications and the instructions said it could take up to 7 months.
  7. In early September, I checked the status of my application again:green card update - September 3
  8. Shortly after checking the status online, I received the Employment Authorization Card in the mail. I sent a copy to my employer, just to keep them informed; however, i was told by my HR department that this EAD card, does not invalidate your H-1B as it is just a work authorization document and not a primary immigration status document.
  9. Two weeks later I got the interview appointment in the mail for October 16th (that’s almost 6 months post-submission), so I did what I knew to do best…Google it… I researched for articles and blogs to give me a little bit of guidance regarding what to expect in order to prepare as much as I could.
  10. You will attend your interview, and if it is approved you are done!

Good Luck!

[Disclaimer: I’m not a lawyer. Every case is different. If you have any questions please contact a lawyer, I’m not an expert in the field… I’m just sharing my experience.]

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