U.S. immigration law provides aliens with a variety of ways to become lawful permanent residents (get a Green Card) through employment in the United States. These employment-based (EB) “preference immigrant” categories include:
First preference (EB-1) – priority workers
- Aliens with extraordinary ability in the sciences, arts, education, business, or athletics;
- Outstanding professors and researchers; or
- Certain multinational managers and executives.
- Second preference (EB-2) – aliens who are members of the professions holding advanced degrees or who have exceptional ability (including requests for national interest waivers).
- Third preference (EB-3) – skilled workers, professionals, or other workers.
This page provides specific information for aliens in the United States who want to apply for lawful permanent resident status in the EB-1, EB-2, and EB-3 categories while in the United States. This is called “adjustment of status.” You should also read the Instructions for Form I-485, Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status (PDF, 539.23 KB) before you apply.
For more information on other types of employment-based immigrants, see our pages on Green Cards for EB-4 special immigrants (for example, religious workers and special immigrant juveniles) and EB-5 immigrant investors.
If you are currently outside the United States, see Consular Processing for information about how to apply for a Green Card as a family preference immigrant.