There are two main categories for family-related immigrants who wish to obtain a green card in the United States – the first being for immediate relatives and the second being the family preference category. You can get help with family-based green card applications by talking to family immigration attorneys at Minsky McCormick & Hallagan today.
To qualify for a green card as an immediate relative, you must meet one of the following criteria:
You can qualify for a green card if you fall under the family preference eligibility criteria. You can qualify under this category if the following applies:
To start the process, the lawful permanent resident or U.S. citizen relative under either category must fill out an I-130 to petition the applicant for the green card process. Processing times take six to 12 months for immediate relatives as these members have access to unlimited green cards.
Family members who apply under the family preference category must wait from six months to several years. Therefore, immediate relative (IR) applications are given priority.
Individuals who are engaged to U.S. citizens are also eligible for a family-based green card after they get married. Both the U.S. citizen and their fiancé(e) must first apply for a fiancé(e) visa. A U.S. citizen sponsors a nonimmigrant fiancé(e) visa by filing form I-129F.
If approved, the couple will need to apply for a visa to travel to the U.S. They have 90 days from the date of arrival to get married. After the couple is married, the immigrant applicant may apply for a family-based green card following the same rules for immediate family members for U.S. citizens.
If you’re a widow/widower of a U.S. citizen, you may also be qualified to apply for a family green card, provided you entered into the marriage in good faith and not for purposes of immigration. Applicants need to self-sponsor their green card application by filing form I-360.
If the deceased spouse filed an I-130 on behalf of their spouse before their death, it is considered the same as filing an I-360.
Would you like to petition a family member or several family members to live and work in the U.S.? If so, contact Minsky McCormick & Hallagan today. Schedule an appointment right away.