Green Card for an Armed Forces Member Meeting Certain Criteria
Certain individuals who served (or are serving) honorably on active duty in the U.S. Armed Forces after October 15, 1978 and who, after original lawful enlistment outside the United States, served for a certain period of time through a treaty or agreement that was in effect on October 1, 1991, are authorized to get a green card (permanent residence).
Information on this provision can be found in Section 101(a)(27)(K) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA).
Eligibility For A Green Card As An Armed Forces Member Under These Provisions
You must have originally enlisted in the U.S. Armed Forces outside the United States under a treaty or an agreement that was in effect on October 1, 1991 and served for a combined period of time either:
Additionally, you must meet all the following general conditions:
To obtain a green card, you will need to file Form I-360, Petition for Amerasian, Widow(er) or Special Immigrant, with all the required documents that are listed in the form instructions.
If You Live Outside the United States
If You Live Inside the United States
Family of Armed Forces Members
Your spouse and unmarried children under the age of 21 (known as “derivatives”) may be included on your immigration petition and may file their own Form I-485 also.
Work & Travel Authorization
Generally, when you have a pending Form I-485, it is possible for you to apply for authorization to work in the United States and to seek advance parole (advance permission to travel and be admitted to the United States upon your return). For further information, see the our Work Authorization and Travel Documents pages under Green Card Processes & Procedures.
Last Reviewed/Updated: 03/23/2011