Family-Based Visa

Our number one priority at Immigration Law Center is keeping families together. Therefore we will help you and your qualified loved ones establish permanent residency in the U.S.

A U.S. citizen may petition for certain family members to receive either a Green Card, a fiancé(e) visa or a K-3/K-4 visa based on your relationship.

Application Process: Green Card (Permanent Residence)
To petition for a family member to receive a Green Card (permanent residence), begin by filing Form I-130, Petition for Alien Relative. This form establishes the family relationship that exists between you and your relative. Sometimes the I-130 can be filed together with an application for permanent residence, officially known as Form I-485, Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status. This is discussed below.

What Happens Next?

  • If your relative is already in the United States, they may apply to adjust status to become a Green Card holder (lawful permanent resident) after a visa number becomes available using Form I-485.
  • If your relative is outside the United States, your petition will be sent to the National Visa Center (NVC). The NVC will forward your petition to the appropriate U.S. consulate when a visa becomes available and your relative will be notified about how to proceed. This process is referred to as "consular processing.”
  • Your family member’s preference category will determine how long they will have to wait for an immigrant visa number. Once you have filed a petition, you can check its progress the My Case Status page. For visa availability information, see the Visa Bulletin page on the U.S. Department of State website.

For more information on becoming a Green Card holder, see the Adjustment of Status for processing within the United States and Consular Processing page for processing overseas. For more information on Green Cards, see the Green Card section.

NOTE: A visa petition (Form I-130 or Form I-129F) is only used to demonstrate a qualifying relationship. An approved petition DOES NOT grant any benefit, it simply creates a place in line for visa processing.

Members of the Military
If you or a member of your family is in the U.S. military, special conditions may apply.

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