mother playing patty-cake with child

When you adopt an international child, you may be excited to bring your child home or for their arrival to start your new life together. However, in the excitement of preparing for their arrival, you may not have considered what kind of visa your adopted child will need to enter the country. The following blog explores the most common visas, whether or not your child will receive citizenship, and how a New York City family immigration lawyer can help you start this new chapter of your life.

What Type of Visas Can My Adopted Child Receive?

The location from which you adopted your child will determine the visa they are eligible for. If your child is from a Hague Convention country, they can receive one of the following visas:

  • IH-3: This visa is available for adoptions finalized in the Hague Convention country
  • IH-4: Available for a child traveling from a Hague Convention country to the United States for adoption

If your adopted child is not from a Hague Convention country, they can obtain one of two visas:

  • IR-3: These visas are available if an unmarried parent or one parent from a marriage physically sees the child they are adopting before or during the process
  • IR-4: This visa is issued to a child adopted by only one parent if married, is coming to the United States for adoption, and was not seen before or during the adoption process.

Will My Child Receive Citizenship?

Once your child is in the United States on a visa, you may wonder whether or not they will receive citizenship. This depends on what kind of visa they have.

Children who enter the United States on an IH-3 or IR-3 visa automatically receive citizenship. However, this only applies if the child is under 18 and in the legal and physical custody of a United States citizen.

Because children who enter the United States with an IH-4 or IR-4 have not yet been adopted, they will not receive citizenship until circumstances are met. Until they are legally adopted, they will remain lawful permanent residents. Upon their adoption, assuming it happens before their 18th birthday, those with these visas will become United States citizens.

How Can an Attorney Help Me?

In order for your adopted child to receive a visa granting them entry into the United States, you must file forms depending on the circumstances of the adoption. As such, it’s in your best interest to work with an experienced immigration attorney to help ensure the application you file is the correct document.

Not only can they help you with any issues you may experience during the filing process, but they will also fight on your behalf if any additional issues regarding the adoption of a foreign child arise.

At the Law Office of Jason A. Dennis, we understand how excited you are to welcome a new member into your family. However, this can be a confusing and complex process. As such, our team is ready to help you through so you can prepare for the arrival of your child. Contact us today to learn how we can assist you.