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U.S. Immigration for Canadian Citizens and Residents
Border crossing for Canadians: There are several ways for Canadian citizens to cross the border to the Unites States; with or without first obtaining a visa. Canadians who are only visiting the U.S. are generally permitted to stay for as long as 6 months without a visa. There are several border-crossing programs to facilitate fast and convenient border crossing for Canadian Citizens and landed immigrants. “Snowbird” Visa: A Snowbird visa is not an official term. It is an expression related to Canadians who divide their time between the U.S. and Canada. It is not uncommon for Canadians to spend the winter months in the warmer regions of the U.S., and then go home to enjoy Canada in the summer. Green Card: There are several ways that Canadian citizens or permanent residents could obtain a green card to stay in the U.S. indefinitely. Most Canadians who obtain permanent resident status in the U.S. do it as a close relative to a U.S. citizen. A close relative would generally be a spouse or child. Another common way to obtain permanent residence in the U.S. is through employment.
Some temporary visitors, students and workers on non-immigrant visas are also allowed and sometimes required to obtain a Social Security number. The Social Security card is a very important document in the United States. Not only does it entitle individuals to certain benefits once retired, but employers, banks, schools and the USCIS all use the social security card as a form of identification. Social Security is a complex system that is linked to many other government and private databases and services.