What is the basic process of family immigration in the U.S.?

America may be seen as the “Land of Opportunity,” and indeed many people do immigrate to our nation with hopes of having a better life than they would have in the country of their birth. Some of these people become United States citizens, and then wish to have their loved ones who still live abroad obtain a Green Card so they too can be a lawful permanent resident. Kentucky residents in such situations may want to know how this can be done.

In order to obtain a Green Card for a family member, a U.S. citizen needs to sponsor their family member and they must be able to prove that their income is sufficient to support their family member when their family member enters the nation. The process starts when a Form I-130 is filed. This form establishes that the U.S. citizen and the family member are related. U.S. citizens can petition for a spouse or a child, whether that child is married or unmarried. If the U.S. citizen is age 21 or above, they can also petition for a parent or sibling.

After the Form I-130 is filed, the family member is placed in line alongside others seeking immigration into the U.S. from either the same foreign nation, region or based on the way the family member is related to the sponsor. Once a person gets to the “front of the line,” then he or she will undergo a background check. If they pass that, and if they also meet all other requirements for admission into the United States, then the family member will be eligible to immigrate.

Of course, this is only a brief introduction to family immigration in the United States. There are also rules that apply to the spouses and children of those seeking to enter the country, and there is no guarantee as to how long the process will take. To obtain a more thorough explanation of family immigration in the United States, it may help to seek legal advice.



FindLaw Network