Immigration » Ultimate Guide to Transitioning from L1 Visa to Green Card

Ultimate Guide to Transitioning from L1 Visa to Green Card

Unlock the path from L1 Visa to Green Card with our comprehensive guide. Discover the steps, requirements, and expert insights to make your journey smooth.

Are you an international worker in the United States on an L1 Visa, dreaming of making the USA your permanent home? The transition from an L1 Visa to a Green Card is a significant step towards achieving that dream. In this detailed guide, we’ll walk you through every aspect of this process, providing valuable insights, expert advice, and answers to common questions along the way. Let’s embark on this journey together, and soon, you could be holding your Green Card, a symbol of your new life in the United States.

Global Immigration Partners is a specialized immigration law firm that provides expert guidance on international migration matters.


The journey from an L1 Visa to a Green Card can be complex, but it’s a worthwhile endeavor that can lead to a more stable and promising future in the United States. This guide is designed to help you navigate the process with confidence and clarity.

L1 Visa to Green Card: An Overview

Understanding L1 Visa

The L1 Visa is a non-immigrant visa that allows international companies to transfer employees to the United States temporarily. It’s a great way for companies to utilize the skills and expertise of their foreign workforce in the U.S.

The Green Card Dream

A Green Card, officially known as a Permanent Resident Card, grants you the status of a permanent resident in the United States. This means you can live and work in the U.S. indefinitely and enjoy many of the rights and privileges of a U.S. citizen.

Eligibility and Categories

To convert your L-1 visa to a green card, you must meet certain eligibility criteria and choose the appropriate immigrant visa category. The most common categories for L-1 visa holders are:

  1. EB-1C: This category is designed for multinational managers and executives.
  2. EB-2: Professionals with a bachelor’s degree or higher typically fall under this category.
  3. EB-3: Skilled workers and unskilled workers can apply for a green card under this classification.

The Conversion Process

Here are the essential steps to convert your L-1 visa to a green card:

  1. Employer Sponsorship: Your employer must file a Form I-140, Immigrant Petition for Alien Worker, with USCIS on your behalf.
  2. Employee Application: Simultaneously, you should file a Form I-485, Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status, with USCIS.
  3. USCIS Review: USCIS will carefully review both the Form I-140 petition and the Form I-485 application.
  4. Green Card Issuance: If both petitions are approved, USCIS will issue a green card to you, granting you permanent resident status.

Factors Affecting the Process

Several factors can influence the process:

  • Processing Time: The processing time varies based on your immigrant visa classification and nationality. Generally, EB-1C processing is quicker than EB-2 or EB-3.
  • Cost: The cost of conversion depends on immigration attorney fees and USCIS filing fees.

Important Considerations

As you embark on the journey of converting your L-1 visa to a green card, keep these factors in mind:

  • Dual Intent: You must have dual intent, demonstrating your intention to immigrate permanently to the United States.
  • Visa Requirements: Ensure you meet the requirements of the immigrant visa category you’re applying for.
  • Employer Sponsorship: Your employer must be willing to sponsor you for a green card.
  • Medical Examination and Background Check: Be prepared to pass the required medical examination and background check.

The process of converting an L-1 visa to a green card can be intricate. To navigate it successfully, it’s highly advisable to consult with an immigration attorney who can provide personalized guidance based on your unique circumstances.

The Journey Begins: L1 Visa to Green Card

L1 Visa Categories

Before you can embark on the path to a Green Card, you must understand the different categories of L1 Visas and their implications for the Green Card process.

Eligibility Criteria

Discover the key eligibility requirements you must meet to transition from an L1 Visa to a Green Card successfully.

The Labor Certification Process

Learn about the labor certification process, a crucial step in obtaining a Green Card, and understand its significance.

The Visa Bulletin

Stay up-to-date with the Visa Bulletin to know when you can file your Green Card application and what your waiting period might be.

Preparing Your Green Card Petition

Get expert advice on how to prepare a robust Green Card petition, ensuring the best chance of approval.

The Adjustment of Status vs. Consular Processing

Explore the two primary paths to obtaining a Green Card and determine which one is right for you.


How long does it take to transition from an L1 Visa to a Green Card?

The processing time can vary depending on several factors, but on average, it takes around 18 months to 3 years.

Can I travel internationally while my Green Card application is pending?

Yes, you can travel internationally, but you must follow specific procedures and obtain necessary documents.

What are the financial requirements for the Green Card application?

Financial requirements can vary, but generally, you need to demonstrate that you won’t become a public charge in the U.S.

Can my family members also get Green Cards through my L1 Visa?

Yes, your spouse and unmarried children under 21 can usually apply for Green Cards as your dependents.

Is there a limit on the number of Green Cards issued each year?

Yes, there are limits for each category of Green Cards. This is where the Visa Bulletin becomes crucial in determining your wait time.

Can I change jobs while my Green Card application is in process?

Changing jobs is possible, but it can complicate your Green Card application. Consult an immigration attorney for guidance.


Transitioning from an L1 Visa to a Green Card is a significant step towards making the United States your permanent home. While the process may seem daunting, with the right guidance and determination, it’s entirely achievable. Keep this guide handy as you embark on your journey, and soon, you could be celebrating your new status as a U.S. Green Card holder.

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