During the visa interview, the consular officer examines the documentation, and interviews the applicant to determine whether or not the applicant is admissible to the U.S. as a lawful permanent resident. If the applicant is eligible for an immigrant visa, the consular officer will approve the application, and will issue an immigrant visa valid for six months. The applicant must enter the U.S. within that six month period to complete the permanent resident process. The applicant will be granted lawful permanent resident status upon his or her admission to the U.S. using the immigrant visa. At the time of admission, the applicant’s immigrant visa will be endorsed (stamped) and serves as a temporary Form I-551 evidencing permanent residence status for one year. A physical permanent resident card (green card) is subsequently issued and mailed to the applicant.
A ‘C’ under a particular preference category on the visa bulletin chart indicates that the preference category is “current” or that there are immigrant visas available for individuals who fall within that category.