As a United States citizen or lawful, permanent resident, you may be able to help sponsor a family member for entry into the country with a green card. If you’re looking to sponsor a family member’s visa for entry into the United States, you’ll want to keep reading, as the following blog explores the steps you must take to complete this process. Additionally, you’ll learn why it’s in your best interest to connect with a New York City family immigration lawyer for this complex process.
What Kind of Relative Visas Are There?
If you wish to help a family member apply for a green card, it’s important to understand there are two categories – immediate relatives and family preference visa.
Immediate relatives include the close family members of citizens. Children under 21 who are unmarried are eligible for an IR2 visa, while parents are eligible for an IR5. Spouses can apply for an IR1 or CR1, while fiances will file for a K-1.
Additionally, family members who aren’t immediate family members may be able to obtain a visa if they fall into the correct category. Because they aren’t immediate family, they must apply for a family preference visa. However, there are a limited number of these visas awarded per year, so an application does not mean one will automatically be approved.
Family members of United States citizens who qualify for a family-preference visa include unmarried children over 21, married children, and siblings. If the sponsor is a green card holder, relatives eligible for a visa include unmarried children under 21, unmarried children over 21, and spouses.
What Are the Steps I Must Take to File for a Family Member’s Visa?
To sponsor a family member, you must first submit a Form I-130, Petition for Alien Relative. This is necessary to help establish a relationship between you and the family member you wish to sponsor. The steps for this process will vary depending on where your family member is. If they are currently in the United States on a different visa, they can file a form I-485, Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status. If they are outside of the United States, they must wait until the United States Customs and Immigration Services (USICS) approves the petition, at which point, they will assign the relative a visa number so they can continue the visa application process in their country.
As you can see, this process can be incredibly overwhelming, especially if you are unfamiliar with how to proceed. At the Law Office of Jason A. Dennis, our team understands the different facets of immigration law, so we can help you navigate this process. Aside from helping you complete the paperwork and answering any questions you have, if complications arise during the process, our team will work to fight for you. Contact us today to learn how we can best assist you.