Family Based Petitions (Green cards)
United States citizens and Lawful Permanent Residents are able to file petitions for:
Immediate relatives* of United States Citizens do not have to wait for a visa number to become available. This category includes spouses, parents (as long as the petitioner is over the age of 21) and unmarried children under the age of 21. The only waiting period is the application processing time, which varies. Also, there may be additional time if the relative is out of the country as additional paperwork must be completed after the initial application is approved. When processed the petitioner and the beneficiary will have an interview with the USCIS to show they qualify.
The preference catagories have waiting times that depend on how soon the visa becomes available. This is based on the filing date of the visa petition. The US State Department publishes a Visa Bulletin which shows the what filing date has become current.
First Preference: Unmarried, adult sons and daughters of U.S. citizens. Adult means 21 years of age or older.
Second Preference: Spouses of lawful permanent residents, their unmarried children (under twenty-one), and the unmarried sons and daughters of lawful permanent residents.
Third Preference: Married sons and daughters of U.S. citizens.
Fourth Preference: Brothers and sisters of adult U.S. citizens.
These are the only family based petitions available.
The application process can be demanding and time consuming. As an immigration lawyer in Chicago, Justin Randolph, can help you navigate the complex immigration procedures and requirements. Please contact our office for further assistance. We offer free email or phone consultations.
*If the immediate relative cannot offer proof of entry to the United States with inspection at some point in the past he or she may not be able to adjust their status at this time.