Oct 28, 2022

Guide on Immigrating to the US

Immigrating to the US

Are you planning to immigrate to the US but do not know what visa to apply for or what documents to get? This article aims to provide a complete guideline on how to immigrate to the US.

Immigrant Visa

If you want to move to the United States through direct immigration, then there are many visa categories to choose from. Below are a few options that are available to immigrants:

Family Sponsored Visas

  • This category (IR1, CR) is for spouse of US citizens

  • This category (K3) is for a spouse of US citizen waiting for the approval of their I-130 petition

  • This category (K1) is for fiancΓ©

  • This category (IR4, IH4, IR3, IH3) is for inter-country adoption of an orphan by US citizen

  • This category (IR2, IR5, CR2, F4, F3, F1) is for specific family members of US citizens

  • This category (F2a, F2b visa) is for certain family members of green card holders

Employment Visas

  • This category (S, E1, I5, E2, R5, E3, T5, EW3, C5) is for employees including priority workers, professional degree holders, special immigrant workers, and investors, etc.

  • This category (SR, SD) is for religious worker

  • This category (SI) is for translators or interpreters of Afghani and Iraqi language

  • This category (SQ) is for Iraqis or Afghani worker working on behalf of US government

Others Visas

  • This category (SB) is for a diversity immigrant visa

  • This category (DV) is for a returning resident

Non-Immigrant Visa Options

The non-immigrant visa is cheaper when it comes to cost, and you can apply for it easily. However, you should make sure you clarify your purpose of travel at the immigration office and also make them believe that you are not planning to change your visa type or try to settle in the US after your application has been accepted.

Work and Training Visas

This category includes work and training visas such as E3 for an Australian professional specialist; H1, B1 for Chile or Singapore individuals in FTA; H1B for specialized individuals in occupations requiring high-end knowledge; H2A for temporary agricultural employee; and H2B for temporary worker; for labor or other services. H3 is for training in a program, not a work visa, I think that is for journalists or media workers. J, H1B is for physicians; O is for foreign nationals with special abilities in education, business, arts, sciences, or athletics; and P is for entertainers, performing athletes, or artists.

Exchange and Visitor Visas

This category is for all exchange and visitor visa types, including J that is for an Au pair exchange visitor, an exchange visitor, a teacher, professor, or scholar, Q, which is for international cultural exchange visitors; L, which is for intra-company transferees; and CW1, which is for a CNMI that is only a transitional worker.

Student Visas

This category includes both F and M visa type that is for vocational or academic students

Ship and Crew Transit

This category is for crew and ship workers transit and includes D that is for a crewmember and C that is for individuals transiting in US

Tourist or Business Visas

This visa category is for tourist and business visas and include: B2 that is for medical visitor or treatment and pleasure, vacation or tourist visitor and B1 that is for business visitors

Domestic Employee Visas

This category is for domestic workers. This category includes: B1, which is for a professional, amateur or athlete competing for prize money and for a nanny or domestic employee for a national employer; G1-G5; and NATO, which is for employees of NATO or designated international companies.


While the other visa categories include: R, which is for religious workers, A, which is for a foreign government official or diplomat, A-2, and NATO1-6, which is for overseas military personnel present in the US, T that is for human trafficking victims, TN or TD that is for Mexican or Canadian NAFTA professional worker, U that is for criminal activity victims, V that is for children or spouse of lawful permanent residents, BCC that is for a Mexican border crosser and E that is for treaty investors or traders.

How the US Immigration Works

There are many different routes when it comes to the US immigration system, and it is confusing to understand them without guidance. The system is built on the following rules:

  • Reconnection of families

  • Enticing skilled immigrants to the country so they can boost the economy of the United States

  • The defense of refugees

  • To promote diversity in the States

The new immigration law policy is known as the Immigration and Nationality Act, and it enables the US to issue around 675,000 permanent visas every year. So, if you want to visit it, you can apply through this law.

General Requirements and Documents

When it comes to US immigration, you need to have a few documents, and these include:

  • Medical certificate stating all vaccinations and your health status

  • If relevant, then documents related to past immigration status and criminal history

  • Valid traveling documents and passport

  • Proof of job, if applying through employment visa

  • Sponsor letter if required

  • Certified official documents in English

American flag

Photo by Brett Sayles: https://www.pexels.com/photo/person-showing-usa-flag-921259/


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