Is it Difficult to Get a Green Card?

Gavel on top of a law book, which are both on top of a folded American flag.

Qualifying foreign nationals have the right to apply for a green card under certain circumstances. However, without the assistance of an immigration attorney, the process can be daunting and risky since a denial may subject you to deportation. Here are some basics about green cards to help make the process go much smoother.

What Are the Types of Green Cards?

There are several types of green cards that you can apply for. Foreign nationals must be deemed eligible under the categories listed below.

  • Marriage green cards
  • Family- based green cards
  • Employment-based green cards
  • Special immigrant green cards
  • Green cards for asylum seekers
  • Green cards for refugees
  • Green cards for members of the clergy or other religious workers
  • Green cards for human trafficking and crime victims
  • Green cards for victims of domestic abuse.

How to Apply for a Green Card

If it has been established that you are eligible for a green card, it’s important to follow the processes and procedures for the type of green card you wish to obtain. Each type of green card has its own set of requirements, as well as documentation, that must be provided to the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). Any missing documentation or information on your green card application can cause your green card application to be denied. It’s important to be meticulous when filling out the required paperwork.

Why Green Cards Get Denied

Health Status

Immigrants who wish to obtain a green card must undergo a medical exam by a government-approved doctor. You may be denied a green card for the following health-related reasons:

  • You have a communicable disease that is a health risk to the public.
  • You did not provide documentation proving you have received all proper vaccinations.
  • You have refused required vaccinations.
  • Drug addiction/drug use.
  • You have a mental or physical disorder that could be a threat to yourself or others.

Criminal Record

Individuals who apply for a green card should generally not have been convicted of certain crimes, nor have planned to come to the U.S. to commit a crime. This includes any of the following, but not limited to:

  • Money laundering
  • Prostitution
  • Drug trafficking and drug crimes
  • Fraud
  • Aggravated assault
  • Child or spousal abuse
  • Rape
  • Theft
  • Crimes of violence
  • Human trafficking
  • Alien Smuggling
  • Murder
  • Etc.


However, there are certain waivers and other forms of relief that can waive or excuse certain criminal convictions which would otherwise prevent you from having your green card application approved.

Threat to Security

Any foreign nationals that have engaged in terrorist acts, or are associated with terrorist groups that are against U.S. foreign policy, will not be permitted to apply for a green card.

Why You Need an Immigration Attorney

Although you may be eligible to apply for a green card, it doesn't necessarily mean you will get approved. Immigration law is extremely complicated and is often riddled with red tape and nuances in the law. Having an experienced immigration attorney who understands the requirements of the application process and the available waivers to overcome certain crimes and allegations of fraud can increase your chance of receiving a green card approval.

If you need assistance with your green card application, we can help. Whether you are appealing a green card denial or are submitting a new application, Contact Revilla Law Firm, P.A. at (305) 858-2323 and set up your appointment today.