Permanent residency is an immigration status conferred by the government agency U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) on an international citizen that allows her/him to live and work in the U.S. permanently. This “permanent” ability to remain in the U.S. is what distinguishes a Legal Permanent Resident (LPR), also known as a “green card” holder or “immigrant,” from a temporary or “non-immigrant” visa holder (i.e., a person in the U.S. in the status of H-1B, J-1, O-1, etc.).
There are several ways a foreign national can become a Legal Permanent Resident of the United States, including through employment, family, ability and the visa lottery. Of these routes to a green card, ISSS is authorized by the university to file permanent residency petitions for Georgia State employees on the basis of employment only.
Once a department identifies an international employee (or “foreign national”) it wishes to sponsor, the department should seek consultation with ISSS to determine sponsorship feasibility and strategy. ISSS will review all requests and advise departments accordingly. Furthermore, ISSS will complete and submit all documentation as required by law on behalf of the university. Throughout the process, ISSS will not only assist the international employee and department but will protect Georgia State’s long-term ability to file permanent residency petitions.