Green Card status information is available online at USCIS.gov, advises the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services. Click the Check Your Case Status Link located near the center of the home page. Enter the application receipt number in the box located on the Case Status Online Web page. Click Check Status.
The processing time for Green Card applications varies based on factors including whether the card is requested through family, employment or due to refugee status. Additionally, per country visa limitations, visa availability and familial status impacts application processing times, notes the USCIS.
As of 2015, immediate family members of U.S citizens are given priority status, according to the USCIS. Parents, spouses and unmarried children under the age of 21 are considered immediate relatives. Congress has not set an annual limit on the number of visas available to immediate relatives of U.S citizens.
Preference categories, which range from first to fourth preference, apply to immediate family members of permanent residents and additional family members of both citizens and permanent residents. As of 2015, a minimum of 226,000 family-sponsored visas for applicants in any of the preference categories are available per year, states the USCIS.
Employment-based visa applications are processed based on the date the petition is properly filed or the date the labor certification is filed with the Department of Labor, explains the USCIS. A minimum of 140,000 employment-based preference visas are available each year.