According to an Annual Flow Report from the U.S. Lawful Permanent Residents, of the 1,031,765 persons who became lawful permanent residents in Fiscal Year 2019, over two-thirds were granted LPR status based on a family relationship with a U.S. citizen or current LPR. Under the Immigration and Nationality Act, U.S. citizens and Lawful Permanent Residents (green card holders) are allowed to bring certain family members or relatives to the United States.
If you’re a U.S citizen trying to obtain a visa for a family member, consulting with an experienced Rhode Island immigration law attorney is crucial for detailed guidance. The Law Office of Layne C. Savage has the resources and experience needed to assist and guide clients in the legal matters of family-based immigration. Attorney Layne Savage is available to discuss your situation and explore your available legal options. As your legal counsel, she can guide you through the family sponsorship application and help streamline the process of obtaining green cards for your family members.
The Law Office of Layne C. Savage proudly serves clients in Providence, Rhode Island, Boston, Massachusetts, and communities throughout the state.
Through family-based immigration, U.S. citizens and lawful permanent residents (LPRs) can sponsor certain family members for a visa (or green card) to the United States. There are two major categories of family-based visas — immediate relative and family preference.
An immediate relative is a spouse, parent, or unmarried child of a U.S. citizen. Immediate relatives of U.S. citizens are given special immigration priority and won’t have to wait in line to receive a visa number. The following visas are available under the immediate relative category:
IR1: Spouse of a U.S. Citizen
IR2: Unmarried child (under 21 years of age) of a U.S. Citizen
IR3: Orphan adopted abroad by a U.S. Citizen
IR4: Orphan to be adopted in the U.S. by a U.S. Citizen
IR5: Parent of a U.S. Citizen (who is at least 21 years old)
Family preference visas are for certain, more distant, family relationships with a U.S. citizen and some specified relationships with a lawful permanent resident (LPR). The following visas are available under the family preference visa category:
F1: Unmarried, adult sons and daughters (ages 21 or over) of U.S. citizens
F2A: Spouses and unmarried children (under the age of 21) of permanent residents
F2B: Unmarried adult sons and daughters of permanent residents
F3: Married sons and daughters (of any age) of U.S. citizens
F4: Brothers and sisters of adult citizens
However, the family member or relatives you may petition for depends on whether you are a U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident (green card holder).
If you are a U.S. citizen, you may petition for the following relatives:
Wife or husband
Unmarried child below 21 years of age
Unmarried son or daughter over 21 years of age
Married son or daughter of any age
Mother or father (if you are over 21 years of age)
Brother or sister (if you are over 21 years of age)
If you are a green card holder, you may petition for the following family members:
Husband or wife
Unmarried child under 21 years of age
Unmarried son or daughter over 21 years of age
Here are the steps involved in the family-based immigration process:
The family-based immigration process starts when the U.S. citizen or green card holder petitions for a visa using USCIS Form I-130 to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). The petitioner must provide various documents to prove that the family relationship between you and the person being sponsored is genuine.
Upon filing the visa petition, the USCIS will send you a notification or receipt confirming that your application was received. An incomplete application may be rejected, or you may be required to provide additional information.
Furthermore, the immigration officers will review your application and decide whether to approve or deny your request. Your case file will be forwarded to the National Visa Center for further processing if your application is approved.
Once your application is approved, and a visa is granted, the sponsored family member needs to apply for permanent residency. The family member will also be required to submit certain documents, fill out different forms, and take part in a medical examination.
An experienced family-based immigration attorney can review your application and ensure that you submit all necessary documents.
Family immigration can be a complicated process. Navigating the ever-changing U.S. immigration system on your own can pose serious challenges. Regardless of how straightforward family-based immigration appears, you still need to be aware of the exceptions and vital details. Hiring an experienced immigration law attorney is important for proper guidance and to improve your chances of a successful application.
Attorney Layne Savage is committed to providing comprehensive legal guidance and advocacy in citizenship and immigration-related matters. As your legal counsel, she will help you understand the family-based immigration process and guide you through every stage of the application. She will also review your documents and help you prepare the most successful applications and petitions. Using her extensive experience, she will fight compassionately for your family member’s right to enter and stay in the United States legally.
If you need help migrating your loved ones to the United States, contact the Law Office of Layne C. Savage today to schedule a one-on-one consultation. Attorney Layne Savage can offer you the experienced legal guidance and advocacy you need to make important decisions. The firm is proud to serve individuals and families in Providence, Rhode Island, and Boston, Massachusetts.