Permanent immigration in the US comes with a variety of rights and privileges. One method to obtaining lawful permanent residency is through a relative who is either a citizen of the US or a lawful permanent resident.
There are two categories for unlimited family-based immigration:
- Immediate Relatives of US Citizens (IR): A spouse, widow or unmarried child under the age or 21 of a US citizen.This category also includes parents of adult US citizens
- Returning Residents (SB): Immigrants who previously lived in the US under lawful permanent resident status. These individuals should be returning to live in the US after being abroad for more than one year.
There are four preference categories for limited family-based immigration:
- First Preference : Unmarried children over the age of 21 of US citizens.
- Second Preference: Spouses of lawful permanent residents, their unmarried children under the age of 21, and unmarried children under the age of 21 of lawful permanent residents.
- Third Preference : Married children of US citizens.
- Fourth Preference : Siblings of adult US citizens.
Your relative should first submit an immigrant visa petition, I-130 Petition for Alien Relative. This form should be accompanied by proof of your relationship to your relative.
Upon approval of this petition, the Department of State will determine if an immigrant visa number is available for you. When a number becomes available, you may apply for assignment of that number.
In order to sponsor a relative for lawful permanent residency, you must prove the following:
- You are a citizen or a lawful permanent resident of the US.
- You can support your relative at 125% above the mandated poverty line.
You must also show proof of your relationship with your relative.
Immigrant Visas Through Adoption
International adoption is a big issue to Americans of varying backgrounds. However, the process can be cumbersome, long, tedious and costly. Good and early planning before getting into it is what anyone planning adoption needs to undertake. Better understanding of the cumbersome process, obligation and eligibility is curcial.