As a U.S. citizen, which relatives can I sponsor (or petition for)?

U.S. citizens can sponsor the following family members:

Husband or wife

Unmarried children under 21

Married sons and daughters 21 and older

Parents, if you are 21 or older

Siblings, if you are 21 or older

A fiancé(e) who lives outside the United States and children of the fiancé(e) who are under 21

To sponsor (or petition for) a family member to receive a green card (permanent residence), you must submit the following:

Form I-130, Petition for Alien Relative

Proof of your U.S. citizenship

Proof of your relationship to the relative you are sponsoring (birth certificate, marriage certificate, divorce decree, etc.)

Proof of any legal name change for you or your relative

Spouses of deceased U.S. citizens and permanent residents (widows and widowers) may be eligible to become permanent residents.

The term “immediate relative(s)” refers to certain relatives of U.S. citizens. Immediate relatives include:

The husband or wife of a U.S. citizen

Children (unmarried and under 21) of a U.S. citizen

Parent(s) of a U.S. citizen (the petitioning citizen must be 21 or older.)

For immediate relatives of U.S. citizens, visas are always available, which means that your family member does not have to wait for a visa. Immediate relatives who are in the United States can file Form I-485, Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status at the same time as Form I-130.

Author: Mark

A U.S. immigration lawyer. Legal Services available in Arabic and Russian.

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