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Green Card - Registry - Frequently Asked Questions


What is Registry?

If you have been present in the U.S. since January 1, 1972, you may be eligible for the Registry provisions of U.S. immigration laws which would allow you to obtain lawful permanent residence even if you are illegally in the U.S. now, or if you initially entered the U.S. illegally.


Where can I find the law related to Registry?

The part of the law concerning the Registry provisions is located at INA ยง249. The specific eligibility requirements and procedures for becoming a permanent resident through Registry are included in the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) at 8 CFR 249.

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Who is eligible to apply for permanent residence based on Registry?

You are eligible to apply for permanent residence based on Registry provisions if you:

  • Entered the U.S. prior to January 1, 1972
  • Have continuously resided in the U.S. since entry
  • Are a person of good moral character
  • Are neither ineligible for citizenship, except for the requirement of five years of lawful permanent residence, nor inadmissible for participation in terrorist activities, certain criminal or security grounds, or for alien smuggling
  • Never participated in Nazi persecutions or genocide
  • Have no other way of becoming a lawful permanent resident
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