A United States citizen or lawful permanent resident (green card holder) is permitted under US immigration law to petition the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) for certain relatives to receive green cards based on the familial relationship. This can be a difficult process, however.
At Minsky, McCormick & Hallagan, we have experienced family immigration lawyers in Hinsdale who routinely help clients successfully navigate the complex immigration system and obtain green cards for their relatives.
Although the law allows US citizens and green card holders to petition USCIS for their relatives to be given their own green cards, the process and expected timelines vary based on the family relationship and immigration status. Not all relatives qualify, and family-based immigration is divided into two broad categories – “immediate relatives” and “family preference” based categories.
One is an immediate relative if they are related to a United States citizen in any of the following close relationships:
A US citizen can file a petition for a green card for anyone who falls in any of those categories, provided all other requirements are met. It is not the case that a relative who falls in any of these categories automatically gets their green card approved. A qualified relative may still have their green card application denied on any of the many grounds of “ineligibility,” which includes things like certain medical conditions, the conviction of certain crimes, and so on.
If your relative is affected by any of those grounds of ineligibility, an experienced immigration lawyer at Minsky, McCormick & Hallagan can find a solution to still have the relative approved for the green card.
A major benefit of being an immediate relative and applying for a green card under that category is that your application is processed much faster than applications for a green card in all other categories.
Relatives of U.S. citizens who are not immediate relatives as described above or who are family members of lawful permanent residents (Green Card holders) are allowed to apply for a green card under what is known as the “preference” categories. These are as follows:
To avoid delays or unnecessary denial of your green card application, seek the professional services of a competent and experienced family immigration lawyer to assist you in navigating this complex immigration system.
If you are in the Hinsdale area, contact Minsky, McCormick & Hallagan today for a consultation.