preference immigrationA system for determining which and when people can immigrate to the United States within the limits of immigration set by Congress. In family immigration preference is based on the status of the petitioner (American citizen or lawful permanent resident) and his/her relationship to the applicant. In employment immigration it is based on the qualifications of the applicant and labor needs in the United States.
Source: Department of State. March 2007.
Related Terms from the Immigration Law Glossary