Family Based Immigration

The majority of immigrant visas are given to people based upon their familial relationship with United States Citizens or Lawful Permanent Residents. Except for immediate relatives (see below for definition), the time a person has to wait to receive a visa based upon a family relationship depends upon their visa category. Even though the petition for a visa may be approved, a potential immigrant must wait until petitions with their priority date are processed. (The priority date is the day that the application is accepted for processing by the INS.) Each month the INS may process applications that were submitted on or before a specific priority date. See the new developments section for the likely waiting time for picking up a family-based immigrant visa.

An intending immigrant can qualify for two categories of family-based immigrant visas:

  1. as an immediate relative of an U.S. citizen; or
  2. under one of four family preference immigrant visas.

Spouses and children (under 21) of preference immigrants, may immigrate with the principle beneficiary under one of the four preference categories if they accompany the immigrant or follow to join them within four months.

It is important to note that in family based immigration cases, a child or son or daughter under the categories can include a stepchild, illegitimate child, adopted child, orphan depending upon the circumstances. Also, the “battered spouses” of U.S. citizens and permanent residents may self-petition even if they are no longer married. If you wish to file an immigrant petition based upon such a relationship.

Family Based Immigration can become very complicated and there may be long wait times once the petition is filed.

Contact us today for a personal and private discussion.

Be Sociable, Share!