Family-Based Immigration

If you are a U.S. citizen or a green card holder (legal permanent resident or “LPR”) you can petition your family members for a green card.   This generally can be done in two phases.  The first phase is to file a petition for your relative.  Depending on the family relationship, once the petition is approved, your relative will have to wait until his or her visa priority date is current before you can apply for a green card (adjustment of status).

Categories for Family Immigration:

Immediate Relatives

These include spouses, biological children under 21, step-children who were under the age of 18 at the time of marriage, and parents of U.S. citizens.  (No waiting for visa priority date).

1st Preference Category:
This category includes unmarried sons and daughters of U.S. citizens over 21 years of age.

2nd Preference Category:
This category is for relatives of green card holders (LPRs)  and has two subcategories.
Sub-Category 2A  -LPR’s spouse and children (biological or step-child of the LPR).
Sub-Category 2B – Unmarried sons and daughters over the age of 21 of LPRs.

3rd Preference Category:
Married sons and daughters of U.S. citizens (regardless of age).

4th Preference Category:
Brothers and Sisters of U.S. citizens.

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