Visa Types

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Overview

Immigrant visas are for people who plan to live, work or study and remain permanently in the United States. U.S. immigration law provides for the issuance of immigrant visas in four general categories: immediate relatives, family-based, employment-based, and the Diversity Immigrant Visa Program (also known as the "green card" lottery).

U.S. immigration law assumes that beneficiaries of Immigrant Visas will live permanently in the United States.

There are three steps involved in applying for an immigrant visa:

Step 1
Filing an immigrant visa petition with the Department of Homeland Security - U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) or U.S. Embassy Seoul.

Consular officers at the U.S. Embassy Seoul may accept filing of the Form I-130, Petition for Alien Relative under two circumstances. First, petitions filed by a U.S. citizen who is a U.S. government or military employee assigned to the U.S. Embassy Seoul, U.S. Consulate Busan, or a military service member stationed in Korea, for any immediate relative.  This does not apply to service members assigned to an international organization, to service members on temporary duty orders, to Personal Service Contractors, or to U.S. Direct Hire employees on temporary duty or official visits. Second, U.S. Embassy Seoul may accept filing of the Form I-130 for petitioners who believe they have exceptional situations that would merit an exception from filing to the USCIS. If you believe that your situation merits an exception, please contact the Visa Information Services via email at support-korea@ustraveldocs.com to request an exception and explain your circumstances with proof in detail.

Step 2

The processing of the immigrant visa either by the National Visa Center in New Hampshire or the Immigrant Visa Unit at the U.S. Embassy in Seoul.

Step 3
The immigrant visa interview

Some useful links for Immigrant Visa types include:

Additional Resources

Petitioners and beneficiaries may find these additional websites useful during the immigrant visa process: