Orange County Family-Based Petitions Lawyer
Helping Your Family Members Immigrate
Once you become a U.S. citizen, you will have the benefit of sponsoring
some of your relatives to come live with you in the U.S., obtain a green
card and ultimately pursue citizenship. There are certain steps that have
been established by the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services
(USCIS) which you may take to allow your relatives to apply for their
green card or resident card.
Achieving your own citizenship is a major accomplishment, but now you may
want your family to enjoy the same rights and benefits that you have obtained
in the U.S., as well. If you want to petition your alien relatives to
be legally allowed to live and work in the United States, you will need
to take certain steps. Years may pass before your relatives are able to
apply for citizenship.
The process is extremely complicated and can go on for much longer than
necessary if you are not prepared. With the help of an Orange County
immigration lawyer from The Law Office of Bruce C. Bridgman, you can educate yourself
on the requirements, guidelines and process of sponsorship. Our team will
work closely with you to ensure that your relatives arrive in a timely manner.
Overview of the Petition Process
The first step is filling out a Form I-130, which is available at
www.uscis.gov. This form will ask you to name the U.S. embassy where your relative will
be adjusting his or her status. You must include the proper documentation
to verify your citizenship (copy of green card or passport), as well as
your relation to the incoming family member (marriage certificate or birth
certificate) in the Form I-130. Once the form is completed and verified,
the case will be transferred to the National Visa Center or NVC. Here,
your relative's file will be held until the waiting period has passed
and the visa is available.
Once the visa is available, the NVC will process the case and issue a new
set of forms and applications. Once the relative has submitted all of
the required fees and completed all of the paperwork, they will be called
in for an interview. Your relative must be completely prepared for this
interview with all the appropriate paperwork. They will be questioned
about their mental and physical health, as well as their criminal history,
if any. The final stage of the process will be an interview at the U.S.
port of entry.
Who is eligible to sponsor their family members?
The USCIS outlines very specific guidelines when determining who can sponsor
who. If you are at least 18 years old and you have established
U.S. citizenship, you may petition parents, spouses, minors or unmarried children for immigration.
If you have established permanent residency, you may petition "preference
relatives" for immigration. These family members could include your
brother or sister, any of your children who are over the age of 21 or
your married children.
You must meet the following requirements to sponsor a relative for immigration:
- You are a U.S. citizen or a permanent resident; and
- You are able to support your relative (125% above the poverty level).
Hire an Experienced Orange County Immigration Attorney
If you have questions about whether or not you qualify to sponsor a particular
relative or whether or not you qualify to be sponsored, you should speak
with an immigration attorney at The Law Office of Bruce C. Bridgman. Your
relative's immigration process will be smoother if you better understand
and follow the guidelines set forth by the USCIS. With the help of your
lawyer, you can ensure that you are prepared with the necessary citizenship
proof, forms and other required documents.
Contact our experienced Orange County immigration lawyer at The Law Office of Bruce C. Bridgman if you are interested in sponsoring
a relative to live in the United States.