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Family-Sponsored Visa: Ways to Acquire

signage on nightThe American dream is a goal for a lot of people living in a foreign country. For a lot, it takes months or years for them to get approved. Their only way to reaching that dream is a golden ticket called “Green Card.” Here are some of the ways an immigrant can apply for a green card and be a resident of the United States.

Family-Based Immigration

A citizen of a foreign country can seek or apply to live permanently in the United States, but the requirement states that this individual must possess an Immigrant Visa or IV. The individual seeking permanent residency in the United States can be sponsored by an immediate family member who is at least 21 years old. It can either be a US Citizen or considered to be a US Lawful Resident or also better known as a “Green Card Holder.” There are also other ways to acquire a Visa, especially for fiances, which are discussed in the K1 Visa Guide and more types of immigration requests too.

Family-based immigrants are classified into two types; the first one is called Immediate Relative, and the other is Family Preference.

Immediate Relative

Immediate Relative Family-Based Immigrant Visas are based on the degree of kinship the applicant has with the individual sponsoring the application for the immigrant visa. People who fall under this category include spouse, children, or parent of the petitioner. The number of immigrants or applicants in these categories is not limited each fiscal year.

Family Preference

The Family Preference Immigrant Visa is considered to be a more specific type of immigrant application compared to the Immediate Relative Family-Based Immigrant Visas. Instead of close family members, this type of Immigrant Visa is for relatives who are more distant and some other specified relationships. Unlike the Immediate Relative Family-Based Immigrant Visa, the US only allows a limited number of applicants each fiscal year.

Things to Remember

The status of the petitioner affects his ability to sponsor or file a petition for a relative. For US Citizens, they can file an immigration visa for a spouse, son, daughter, parent, or sibling. In contrast, US Lawful Permanent Residents can only file an Immigrant Visa Petition for a spouse and an unmarried son or daughter.

Fiance

A fiance is not considered a relative because it is not yet honored by the sanctity of the church and the laws governing the United States. However, a fiance can still go through the petition process through the K1 Visa process. The K1 Visa, which is also known as the Fiance Visa, allows the fiance of a US Citizen to enter the US and marry their US Citizen fiance. From there, they can request a change of status and process the application to get their green card. To qualify, the petitioner must submit all necessary documents as proof that he/she is a US Citizen. Just like what is discussed in the Family Preference Immigration Visa, US Lawful Permanent Residents are not eligible to file such a petition.

The fiance being petitioned must show proof that he/she must be eligible for marriage. If the fiance was previously married, he/she must provide proof that the previous marriage has legally and officially been terminated.

Filing for both these types of petitions can be gruesome. Still, if there is something that you do not understand with the application process, the US suggests that you seek assistance from a reputable immigration lawyer. If you have a difficult Tim finding a reputable immigration lawyer, the embassy is the best person to answer all your questions about the process.

Processing Time

The processing time for these kinds of applications depends on many factors like current USICS processing times and how busy the consulate is during the time of your application. These people are the ones handling your petition and also process the interviews for the application. You can always check the status of your application by contacting the US embassy or going to their official website for more information.

Filing for both these types of petitions can be gruesome. Still, if there is something that you do not understand with the application process, the US suggests that you seek assistance from a reputable immigration lawyer. If you have a difficult Tim finding a reputable immigration lawyer, the embassy is the best person to answer all your questions about the process and the documents needed.