How to Live in the United States (complete guide 2023)


If you live in Brazil, you’ve probably already thought about how to live in the United States. After all, many Brazilians seek to live the American dream.

Either for the dream of living an American life, or to seek better living conditions – or even both at the same time.

However, the way to make this happen – legally – is not that simple. 

With that in mind, we made this article on How to live in the United States legally to answer the main questions on this subject, and also to help you, who have this dream, to make it come true!

How to Live in the United States
How to Live in the United States (complete guide 2022)

Top Ways to Live in the United States

There is no magic formula for learning how to live in the United States legally.

Each case must be analyzed individually to find the best path to follow.

However, the two main ways for those who wish to live in the USA are:

  • Have a green card (permanent residence);
  • Obtain a visa.  

We will go over all the important points of each of the above situations, but first it is important to point out that any process will be full of bureaucracy, and requires good planning. 


Ah, the Green Card! So desired by so many Brazilians! In the United States it is called the Permanent Resident Card.

This document makes the person almost an American, because it gives him/her practically all the rights of a native citizen. 

How to Live in the United States (complete guide 2023) 1
Permanent Resident Card (green card)

To get a green card and then learn how to live in the United States legally, there are some possibilities, such as:

By relationship

It is possible to get a green card when someone in your family is an American citizen.

The family member usually has to be close, and it is easier to get a green card if they are first degree relatives.

The process may seem simple, but it can take years for the U.S. government to approve the application.

When the application falls under this hypothesis, it is the American relative himself/herself who must make the application so that the person can obtain the green card. 

What if the child of a foreign couple is born in the United States?

This is a frequently asked question, and unfortunately this fact will only give the right to citizenship to the child, not to the parents. 

For the work  

Just as in other countries around the world, such as Australia, the United States can authorize a person to stay in the United States because of work performed by that person on its territory. 

Is it any work?

Yes, but in practice, it is seen that there are more chances of this authorization being granted when the area in which the person works coincides with an area that has qualified labor problems in the country.  

So, if you are interested in how to live in the United States, stay tuned for these opportunities!

For the EB-5 (investor) visa

Another way to obtain a green card and live in the US legally is through the EB-5 visa.

People who obtain this visa in this country must open a business in the United States, and employ more than 10 verified U.S. citizens or existing residents. 

By marriage

The “simplest” way to obtain a green card is by marrying a U.S. citizen.

However, as “easy” as this may seem, the American authorities look very carefully at this type of application, as they are always wary of the possibility that the marriage is just a facade to obtain a green card and become a resident in the country. 

Furthermore, forging marriages is a crime in the United States, which means that this path is very dangerous if it is not a true intention. 

General Information

  • The green card needs to be renewed every 10 years;  
  • When requested through work, or by a relative, that person will sign a document stating that they will be financially responsible for that person during that time;
  • The Green Card can also be granted to other people such as immigrants connected to voluntary service institutions, refugees, victims of trafficking, among others;
  • There is the Diversity Visa Lottery, which is a lottery for one or more people from different countries to win a green card if they meet the requirements that are announced every year (for example, being from one of the countries specified on the list). The justification for this program is to increase the diversity of the country. Learn more here

2. Living in the USA with a visa

Another way you need to know about how to live in the United States legally is through a student or work visa, for example.

Going to college in the USA is a good idea, because this increases your chances of being able to stay in the country after finishing your course, either by networking during this period, or by getting a job in the area that you want to apply for your green card. 

Besides this, you can work in the United States with different types of visas, which is a subject for another article, because there are many possibilities.

However, it is important to mention the H visa.

This visa is granted to the worker when the contracting company can allege and prove that there is not someone as qualified as that person for that job/activity. 

Finally, it is worth pointing out that with the tourist visa it is not possible to live in the United States, with it you can only stay 6 months in the country and take a course of up to 18 hours per week.

Working with a tourist visa in the United States is not allowed! 


If you want to know how to live in the United States legally, it takes planning first.

Which city do you want to live in? Does it have good opportunities for immigrants to get a green card? How is your English? Do you have enough resources to do it? 

The residency process is expensive, involving taxes, lawyer’s fees, among other expenses.

Keep in mind that you need a reserve to guarantee that you will make it to the end of the process.  

In addition, you will need to prove that you can support yourself in the country on your own, i.e. the government will analyze whether you are generating any costs for them. 

As you can see, there are several ways for you to find out how to live in the United States legally.

However, it is very important to perform all the steps in a safe way, and with the correct follow up of companies specialized in the subject. 

We are at your disposal for a VIP consultation and to give you all possible information.

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