A US citizen or lawful permanent resident can file papers with the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) to sponsor a family relative or relatives who qualify for an immigrant visa (green card). At Joseph & Hall, we have experienced immigration attorneys who routinely handle and successfully conclude cases like this for our clients in the Denver Metro.
Non-citizens who are in the United States on certain visas, such as L1 or H1, can also file papers to sponsor their qualifying relatives to receive their own nonimmigrant visas to come and join their sponsoring relatives in the U.S.
Although the law allows US citizens and green card holders to petition for their relatives to be given their own green cards, the process one must go through and how long it would take depends on who the relative is.
There are two types of relatives who qualify for family-based immigration, and these are broadly defined as “immediate relatives” and “family preference” categories.
A family member is an “immediate relative” if they are related to a US citizen in any of the following close family relationships:
The U.S. citizen relative in any of these familial relationships can file a petition with the USCIS to have the close family relative approved for a green card. However, it is not an automatic approval merely by establishing that the relationship exists. Rather, the petition and the green card application will only be approved if both the petitioning U.S. citizen and their relative meet other requirements.
This is because an otherwise qualified non-citizen relative who fits or is in any of these familial relationships may still have their green card application denied based on any of the many grounds of “inadmissibility.”
Grounds of inadmissibility include issues such as certain medical conditions, immigration violations, having convictions for certain crimes, and so on. If your relative you wish to sponsor is affected by any of these grounds of inadmissibility, our experienced family immigration lawyers at Joseph & Hall can help you in still finding a to have the relative approved for the green card.
Relatives of U.S. citizens who are outside the class or relatives described above or who are family members of green card holders can apply for a green card under what is known as the “preference” categories, and these are as follows:
To more easily and more effectively navigate the complex immigration system to obtain a green card for your family member, it is important to get the services of competent and experienced immigration lawyers to assist you. Contact Joseph & Hall today and talk to one of our experienced family law attorneys.
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