Family Based Immigration
In some cases, you or your relative can be sponsored by family already residing in the United States of America. Successful family sponsorship can lead to an approved immigrant petition and a Resident Visa (green card).
However, US Immigration Law is very particular about who is considered an immediate relative or other close family members for immigration purposes and due to limited visa numbers it is common for many cases to take years for an approval and for a visa to be issued. Like most immigrants, chances are that you have not considered the many pathways you or your relative may have for immigrating to the US using a family sponsor. Below is some information about Immediate and close relatives and their preference category that are important for you to understand. Please contact us for a consultation before any other actions are made
“Immediate Relatives” of a U.S. Citizen
“Immediate Relatives” refers to parents, spouses and children (who are unmarried and under 21 years of age) of a U.S. citizen. Immediate relatives of a U.S. citizen can immigrate to the United States without being subject to any numerical restrictions, unlike other close family members of U.S. citizens and/or permanent residents. Namely, they can apply for the permanent resident status without having to deal with any waiting time. Other close family members of U.S. citizens or permanent residents, are divided into several groups called “Preferences”. Each Preference is given a numerical quota per year to limit the number of immigrants admitted into the United States.
Other Close Family Members of a U.S. Citizen
Other close family members of a U.S. citizen can qualify to immigrate to the United States, but unlike immediate relatives of a U.S. citizen, they are subject to a numerical limit of immigrant visas available to them each year. Close family members are divided into several groups called “Preferences”. The higher the Preference, the quicker the alien will be eligible to receive a green card. For detailed information on other close family members of a U.S. citizen, please contact our office.
First preference: Unmarried Children over 21 year of age of U.S. Citizens
Third preference: Married Children of U.S. Citizens
Fourth preference: Brothers or Sisters of U.S. Citizens
Family Members of Permanent Residents
Spouses and unmarried children of a permanent resident can apply for a green card. They are categorized as the “Second Preference” group of people who are eligible for immigration to the United States. For detailed information on spouses and/or children of permanent residents, please contact our office.
Second preference: Spouses or Children of Permanent Residents
Call us at (907) 562-4000 or fill out our consultation form today.