How Can I Sponsor My Parents to Move to the United States Permanently?
Many immigrants who live in the United States want to “sponsor” their parents to come to the US. This would be either to visit their family or live permanently with their family.
The term “sponsor” usually means to bring to the US or “petition for green card”. Such immigrants often reach out to immigration lawyers in the US for guidance: They want to know how to sponsor their parents to come to the US for either purpose.
This article will give you guidance on bringing your parents over to live permanently in the US. However, we encourage you to talk to an experienced lawyer about your case to avoid any problems and complications.
You must meet certain conditions if you want your parents to live in the US as green-card holders. USCIS says that to lodge a petition, you must be a US citizen and at least 21 years old. Green-card holders (permanent residents) may not petition to bring parents to live permanently in the US.
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A) Can I Petition for My Mother?
If your mother lives outside the US, you can fill in a form. File Form I-130, Petition for Alien Relative, with supporting documents showing your family relationship. You must file a separate Form I-130 with supporting documents for each of your parents. Remember that to do this you have to be a US citizen and at least 21 years old. Please note that, if you gained your US permanent residency and citizenship through adoption, you cannot petition for your natural (birth) mother.
B) Can I Petition for My Father?
If your father lives outside the US, you can file Form I-130 as above. You must file a separate Form I-130 with supporting documents for each of your parents. Remember that to do this you have to be a US citizen and at least 21 years old.
Please note that, to petition for your father, you will need to provide additional supporting documents. This is especially the case if your parents were not married at the time you were born. If your parents did not get married before you were 18 you need to proceed differently. You will need to provide evidence of the parent-child relationship between you and your father.
If you gained your US permanent residency and citizenship through adoption, you cannot petition for your natural (birth) father.
C) Can I Petition for a Step-Parent?
You can petition to bring your step-parent to live in the US. But you can only do this on two conditions:
- You must be a US citizen.
- The marriage between your natural parent and step-parent must have occurred before your 18th birthday.
D) Can I Petition for an Adoptive Parent?
You can petition to bring your step-parent to live in the US. But you can only do this on three conditions:
- The adoption occurred before your 16th birthday.
- You were in the custody of, and living with, your adoptive parent.
- You were living like this for at least two years prior to filing of the petition.
E) Can I sponsor my parents to come to the US with a green card?
No. Only US citizens can petition to bring their parents into the US.
F) Can parents of US born child stay in the US?
Birth of a child in the US does not provide any automatic immigration benefit or status to the child’s parent. The US-born child is a US citizen upon birth. However, the child cannot file a petition for parents until he/she reaches 21 years of age. Aside from the family sponsorship, having a US citizen child could be beneficial. It may help an undocumented parent to qualify for certain waivers or reliefs in removal proceedings. For example, it could help cancel removal.
G) What to expect after filing your petition?
After the petition is filed, USCIS will issue a receipt confirming that the package is received and pending. The receipt will contain a unique number, with which you can track the processing of your case. However, lately, USCIS has been very ineffective in updating case statuses online. As such, the online case process information is often false or misleading.
Unfortunately, the current USCIS processing times are also not promising. In the past, USCIS was posting a specific estimated processing time for each type of case. It constantly updated such information based on the current workload.
Now, USCIS posts a range of estimated time during which they think the case could be processed. These time estimates may be unrealistic. They may do this to minimize inquiries or avoid having to do constant updates. Maybe they just don’t know. Therefore, current processing time information is not useful and often misleading.
To better estimate processing times, it is best to consult a qualified immigration attorney. They are in a better position to know as they frequently handle these types of cases.
If your I-130 petition is approved, his/her case will be transferred to the National Visa Center (NVC). This is for petitions where your parent is outside the US. NVC will then collect fees, supporting documents, and an online immigrant visa application (Form DS-260).
During NVC processing, you will need to provide financial information to show you can financially support your parents. If your income is insufficient, you may need to find a co-sponsor. Your parents will also need to provide police certificates from all countries where they resided for a year or more.
Your parents will then be notified to go to the local US consulate for an interview to complete visa processing. Your parents will need to undergo a medical examination. They may also need to provide additional documents depending on their case and on the country where they live.
If your parent is currently in the US, there are certain advantages: He/she may be eligible to file an Application to Register Permanent Residence. He/she may also be eligible to Adjust Status (Form I-485), at the same time as you file Form I-130. Your parent can also file for work-permit and travel-authorization at the same time.
Article Title: How Can I Sponsor My Parents to Move to the United States Permanently?
Short Description: Many immigrants who live in the United States want to “sponsor” their parents to come to the United States either to visit their family or to live permanently with their family. The term “sponsor” usually means to bring to the United States or “petition for green-card.” Such immigrants often reach out to immigration lawyers in the United States for guidance on how to sponsor their parents to come to the United States for either purpose. This article will help answering some of the basic questions you may have if you would like your parents to permanently move to the United States.
Author: Ismail Shahtakhtinski
Publisher - Orgnization: I.S. Law Firm, PLLC