U.S. Permanent Work Visa Application Process 2024 For First-Time Applicants


Hey there, dream chasers! If you’re reading this, chances are you’re considering taking a big leap toward your American dream by applying for a U.S. Permanent Work Visa. First things first – kudos to you for venturing into this exciting journey! In this blog post, we’re going to break down the process of applying for a U.S. Permanent Work Visa for all you first-timers out there.

How Much Does a US Work Visa Cost in Nigeria?

The cost of a U.S. work visa for individuals in Nigeria can vary based on the specific visa category and circumstances. As of my last knowledge update in January 2022, I’ll provide a general overview of potential costs. However, keep in mind that fees are subject to change, and it’s crucial to verify the most up-to-date information on the official website of the U.S. Department of State or consult with the U.S. Embassy or Consulate in Nigeria.

  1. Petition Filing Fee: If your employer is sponsoring you for a work visa, they will typically incur the initial costs associated with filing the petition (Form I-129 for most employment-based visas). This fee is paid to the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) and may vary depending on the visa category.
  2. Visa Application Fee: After the petition is approved, you will need to pay a visa application fee. This fee is specific to the type of visa you are applying for and is paid to the U.S. Department of State. As of my last update, the fee for most employment-based visas was in the range of $190 to $265.
  3. Medical Examination and Other Costs: Depending on the visa category, you may be required to undergo a medical examination by an approved panel physician. The cost of the medical exam is separate from the visa application fee and varies. Additionally, you may need to pay for other associated costs, such as passport photos, travel to the U.S. Embassy or Consulate for the visa interview, and any courier fees for document delivery.
  4. Premium Processing Fee (if applicable): For certain visa categories, there is an option for premium processing, allowing for expedited processing of the petition. This service incurs an additional fee (as of my last update, it was $2,500), but it may not be available for all types of visas.

It’s essential to check the specific requirements and fees associated with the particular visa category you are applying for. The U.S. Department of State’s website and the website of the U.S. Embassy or Consulate in Nigeria will provide the most accurate and current information.

How Do I Get Permanent Work Authorization in the US?

Getting permanent work authorization in the United States involves obtaining a U.S. Permanent Work Visa, commonly known as a Green Card. Here’s a simplified guide on how you can go about it:

  1. Find a U.S. Employer: The first step is to secure a job offer from a U.S. employer willing to sponsor your Green Card. They will play a crucial role in initiating the application process.
  2. Determine Eligibility: Check if you meet the eligibility criteria for a Green Card. Generally, you need a qualifying job offer and, in some cases, your employer might need to prove that there are no available U.S. workers for the position.
  3. Labor Certification (if required): In certain cases, your employer may need to obtain labor certification to demonstrate the unavailability of local workers for the job. This is a process to ensure that hiring you won’t negatively impact the U.S. job market.
  4. File Form I-140: Your employer will file Form I-140, the Immigrant Petition for Alien Worker, with the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). This form establishes the need for your skills in the U.S. and your qualifications for the job.
  5. Wait for Visa Number: Depending on the type of Green Card, there might be annual numerical limitations. You may need to wait for an available visa number, and the Visa Bulletin, updated monthly, can give you information on visa availability.
  6. Adjustment of Status or Consular Processing: Once a visa number is available, you can apply for adjustment of status if you are in the U.S. or go through consular processing if you are outside the country. Adjustment of status is the process of becoming a permanent resident without leaving the U.S., while consular processing involves obtaining your visa at a U.S. consulate or embassy in your home country.
  7. Attend Green Card Interview: You may be required to attend an interview to discuss your application. This is a standard procedure to verify your information and ensure your eligibility for permanent residency.
  8. Receive Your Green Card: Upon approval, you will receive your Green Card, marking your official status as a permanent resident in the United States.

Remember, the process may vary depending on the specific type of employment-based Green Card you’re applying for. It’s advisable to stay informed, follow the instructions carefully, and seek legal advice if needed to navigate the application process successfully. Good luck on your journey to securing permanent work authorization in the U.S.!

How Can a Nigerian Get a US work Visa?

If you’re a Nigerian looking to obtain a U.S. work visa, here’s a simplified guide to help you through the process:

  1. Find a U.S. Employer: The first step is to secure a job offer from a U.S. employer. They need to be willing to sponsor your work visa. It’s crucial to have a job lined up before proceeding with the visa application.
  2. Determine Visa Type: Identify the most suitable work visa category for your situation. Common work visas include the H-1B visa for specialized occupations and the L-1 visa for intracompany transfers. Your employer will typically choose the appropriate visa category based on your job and qualifications.
  3. Employer’s Petition: Your U.S. employer will file a petition on your behalf with the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). This petition establishes the need for your skills and outlines the terms of your employment.
  4. Wait for USCIS Approval: Once the petition is submitted, you’ll need to wait for USCIS to process and approve it. Processing times can vary, so it’s important to be patient during this stage.
  5. Receive Form I-797: Upon approval, your employer will receive Form I-797, Notice of Action. This document confirms the approval of the petition and includes important information about your case.
  6. Apply for a U.S. Visa: With the approved petition, you can apply for a U.S. visa at the U.S. Embassy or Consulate in Nigeria. The type of visa will depend on the specific category, and you may be required to pay a visa application fee.
  7. Attend Visa Interview: You’ll need to schedule and attend a visa interview. Be prepared to discuss your job, qualifications, and ties to Nigeria. It’s important to present yourself professionally and truthfully during the interview.
  8. Undergo Medical Examination: Some visa categories may require a medical examination. Ensure you follow the specified guidelines and complete the necessary medical tests from an approved panel physician.
  9. Receive Visa Stamp: If your visa application is successful, a visa stamp will be placed in your passport. This stamp allows you to travel to the U.S. for work.
  10. Travel to the U.S.: Once you have the visa, you can travel to the United States and begin your employment. Remember that your stay is contingent on maintaining the terms of your visa and complying with U.S. immigration laws.

How Long Does it Take for a Work Permit to be Approved in USA?

The processing time for a work permit in the USA can vary based on several factors, including the type of work permit and the current workload of the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). As of my last knowledge update in January 2022, here’s a general overview:

  1. Form I-765 Processing Time: The Form I-765 is the application for an Employment Authorization Document (EAD), commonly known as a work permit. The processing time for this form can range from a few months to several months, depending on the specific category under which you are applying.
  2. Category-Specific Variations: Different categories of EAD applications may have varying processing times. For example, applications based on certain visa categories or humanitarian reasons might be processed at different rates.
  3. Current USCIS Workload: USCIS periodically updates processing times based on their current workload. Delays can occur during peak application periods or when there are changes in immigration policies or procedures.
  4. Premium Processing Option: In some cases, USCIS offers a premium processing service for certain forms, allowing applicants to pay an additional fee for expedited processing. However, this option may not be available for all types of work permits.
  5. Case-Specific Factors: Individual circumstances, such as the completeness of the application, accuracy of the information provided, and the presence of any issues or requests for additional evidence, can also impact processing times.
  6. Check USCIS Processing Times: To get the most accurate and up-to-date information on processing times, it is recommended to check the USCIS website or contact USCIS directly. They regularly update their processing time information for different forms and visa categories.

U.S. Permanent Work Visa Application Process 2024 For First-Time Applicants

  1. Find a Job in the U.S.: So, you’ve got your sights set on the U.S., and the first step is landing a job there. A U.S. employer needs to say, “Hey, we want you on our team!” Once you’ve got that job offer, you’re on your way.
  2. Check Your Eligibility: Now, let’s make sure you meet the requirements. Having a job offer is key, but there are a few other things to consider. Don’t worry; we’ll keep it straightforward.
  3. Employer Does Their Thing: Your future boss takes the lead here. They file some paperwork (officially known as Form I-140) with the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). It’s their way of saying, “We really need this person for the job.”
  4. Wait for the Green Light: Now, patience is the name of the game. USCIS reviews everything and decides if your case gets the green light. This waiting game can take some time, so take a deep breath. You’re in good company.
  5. Visa Numbers and the Waiting Game: There’s this thing called visa numbers. Some categories have limits, so you might have to wait for your turn. Don’t worry; it’s like waiting for your favorite ice cream—totally worth it in the end.
  6. Choose Your Path: Time to pick your path: adjustment of status or consular processing. Adjustment of status is like getting your Green Card while you’re in the U.S. Consular processing is for those outside the country. Two roads, same awesome destination.
  7. Green Card Interview Time: You might get an invitation for an interview. It’s just a chat to make sure everything’s on the up and up. Think of it like a friendly check-in. Be yourself, and you’ll be golden.
  8. Voilà! Your Green Card Arrives: The moment you’ve been waiting for—your Green Card is here! It’s like a golden ticket to live and work in the U.S. You’ve officially made it.
  9. Rights and Responsibilities 101: With great power (or, in this case, a Green Card) comes great responsibility. Stay in the loop about your rights and responsibilities—taxes, following the rules, and all that jazz.


And there you have it, a simplified roadmap to your U.S. Permanent Work Visa. Sure, it may seem like a lot, but one step at a time, and you’ll be stpping coffee in the U.S. in no time. Best of luck on your journey—it’s an adventure worth taking