Our firm has helped many families re-unite in the U.S. and achieve their dreams of living close to each other. You are able to immigrate to the U.S. if you are sponsored by a spouse, parent or other qualifying family member. U.S. Citizens may sponsor their spouse, un-married minor children, married and un-married children over 21 years-old, parents and siblings. U.S. Citizens may also sponsor their foreign born fiancée’s subject to certain rules and restrictions.
Permanent residents are also able to sponsor certain family members. One of the biggest misconceptions that we encounter is a newly approved permanent resident who does not know he/she may immediately sponsor their children. A permanent resident may only sponsor a spouse, un-married minor children and un-married adult children. Note that permanent residents are not allowed to sponsor married children and marriage after a petition has already been filed will affect the validity of that petition.
Finally, our clients are always interested in finding out how long their petition will take. The “processing time” is the estimated time it takes for your family member to enter the U.S. with a “greencard” (immigrant visa). Some family petitions are immediate while others could take upwards of 11 years to process. The visa wait time is dictated by the “visa bulletin” published monthly by the Department of State and depends on the number of applicants and number of visas left for that category. Since there is no way of knowing how many people have applied at one time and how many visas will be allocated during one year, there is no way of knowing the exact time your family member will wait for the visa approval. However, after dedicating our entire career to the practice of immigration law we are able to guide our clients through the process and provide estimated time based on past trends.