Family-Based Immigrant Visas
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Immigrating to the United States to live here permanently is an important decision and a once in a lifetime opportunity.

U.S. citizens and legal permanent residents (green card holders) can sponsor family members for permanent resident status. A Lawful Permanent Resident is a foreign national who has been granted the privilege of permanently living and working in the United States.

The conditions for sponsorship by U.S. citizens and permanent residents are significantly different, as you may see from the information provided.

If you want to become a lawful permanent resident based on the fact that you have a relative who is a citizen of the United States, or a relative who is a lawful permanent resident, you must meet the eligibility requirements and go through a multi-step process.

There are also visas available to fiancé(e)s and spouses of U.S. citizens which enable them to come to the U.S. before applying for permanent resident status. Please check links to k1 and K3 visas to examine these options.

Our Services Include:

  • Full Review of your personal circumstances
  • Identification of the appropriate visa options
  • Checklist of documents required for your visa
  • Accurate preparation of your application/petition
  • Preparation of a Memorandum of Law or letter in support of your visa application/petition
  • Submission of your visa application or petition to the appropriate government agency
  • Careful co-ordination of all correspondence with the government agencies

To schedule a consultation for case specific advice, please call us at 253-838-5444 during our regular office hours, Monday to Friday 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. and Saturday 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. PST, or request a consultation by e-mail using the link below.

Our goal is to be just as convenient to work with whether we are located next door or around the world.


Eligibility


In order for a relative to sponsor you to immigrate to the United States, they must meet the following criteria:

  • They must be a citizen or lawful permanent resident of the U.S. and be able to provide documentation proving that status.
  • They must prove that they can support you at 125% of the mandated poverty line, by filling out an Affidavit of Support.


The relatives who may be sponsored as an immigrant vary depending on whether the sponsor is a U.S. Citizen or a lawful permanent resident.

    If the sponsor is a U.S. Citizen, they may petition for the following foreign national relatives to immigrate to the U.S:

    • Husband, wife or Parent, if the sponsor is at least 21 years old
    • Unmarried child under 21 years of age
    • Unmarried son or daughter over 21
    • Married son or daughter of any age
    • Brother or sister, if the sponsor is at least 21 years old.


    If the sponsor is a lawful permanent resident, they may petition for the following foreign national relatives to immigrate to the U.S.:

    • Husband or wife, or
    • Unmarried son or daughter of any age.

The Process


Applying for a permanent visa through a family member is actually a 2-step process.

  1. The United States Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS) must
    approve an immigrant visa petition filed by your relative (sponsor).
  2. The Department of State must determine if an immigrant visa number
    is immediately available to you, even if you are already in the
    United States. When an immigrant visa number is available, it means
    you can apply to have one of the immigrant visa numbers assigned to
    you.

If you are already in the United States, you may apply to change your
status to that of a lawful permanent resident after a visa number
becomes available to you. If you are outside the United States when an
immigrant visa number becomes available, you must then go to the U.S.
consulate serving the area in which you reside to complete your visa
processing.

The amount of time you will wait between the two steps depends on your visa category. As an immediate relative, you only have to wait the amount of time it takes the Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS) to process your petition. All other categories, however, must wait longer. Those in the first preference category have the shortest wait, approximately 1 to 2 years from the time of filing the petition. Those in the fourth preference category have the longest wait, approximately 11 to 12 years from the time of their filing.

To schedule a consultation for case specific advice, please call us at 253-838-5444 during our regular office hours, Monday to Friday 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. and Saturday 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. PST, or request a consultation by email using the link below.

Our goal is to be just as convenient to work with whether we are located next door or around the world.




Federal Way 253-838-5444
Disclaimer: The information provided on this website is not legal advice. It is a general overview with regard to the subject matter covered and should not be relied upon for any specific situation. Transmission of this information is not intended to create, and receipt by you does not constitute, an attorney-client relationship. For case specific legal advice, please contact our firm.
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