There are many more bad immigration lawyers than good ones. The form instructions are usually self-explanatory, but lawyers need to sell their services. Truthfully, in so many instances their services just aren't necessary. It's just worth it to many to pay for the piece of mind, but you end up providing all the documentation the lawyers need in the end so you end up doing the legwork. They often just slap on a form letter and make photocopies. The entire process can be overwhelming, but mostly it just consumes a lot of time (and money if you go the lawyer route). There are so many green card options available, however, and I think natural born citizens would actually be surprised at how permissive the system is, bureaucracy aside. If you have a degree and a job offer, you're in, provided you have lots of time to wait if you are from certain countries with a backlog (Canada is not among those with a backlog). Even if you have zero skills and a job offer, you can get a green card. In the case of Pete, he likely went the green card equivalent of his O visa, which should've been a no brainer given his employment history. But yeah, it can require a lot of documentation in order to demonstrate that you are a bigwig compared to others.