A foreign-born individual who has been granted lawful permanent resident status in a country.

An immigrant leaves their country of origin or citizenship to take up permanent residence in another country. This relocation involves obtaining legal immigration status that allows them to live and work indefinitely in the destination country, often with a pathway to obtaining citizenship through naturalization. For instance, in the United States, immigrants can apply for a Green Card, which grants them permanent residency. In Canada, immigrants can apply for permanent residency through various programs such as the Express Entry system.

The decision to immigrate is a deeply personal one, influenced by a myriad of factors. It’s a journey filled with challenges, where some individuals are driven by the pursuit of better economic opportunities, others by the desire to reunite with family, and some are forced to flee persecution or conflict in their home countries. Regardless of the reason, immigrants navigate official processes and meet specified requirements set by the country they wish to immigrate to.

In certain nations, immigrants who obtain lawful permanent resident status are granted nearly all the rights of citizens, with the exception of voting and certain other civic privileges tied strictly to citizenship itself. As permanent residents, they can work, own property, access social services, and travel relatively freely in and out of the country, contributing to the social and economic fabric of their new home. However, they are also expected to abide by the laws of the country and may be subject to deportation if they commit serious crimes.

It’s essential to distinguish immigrants from categories like temporary workers, international students, or undocumented migrants who have not obtained permanent legal residency status in the destination country. Using precise terminology clarifies the specific situations and rights afforded under a country’s immigration laws.

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