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IR5 Visa (Green Card for Parents)

The IR5 Visa is an immediate Relative Green Card which is available to the parent/s of a U.S. citizen who is at least 21-years-old.

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    What is the IR5 Visa?

    The IR5 Visa is a Family Based Green Card that is designed for parents of U.S citizens who are at least 21-years-old.

    The IR5 Visa is one of the Immediate Relative Green Cards, which means there aren’t any limits imposed on the number of people who can receive the IR5 Visa in a given year. As a result, the applicant can receive their visa without needing to wait for their application to become current.

    With this visa, eligible applicants can live freely in the U.S. and work without needing an Employment Authorization Document (EAD).


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    Am I eligible for the IR5 Visa?

    Any parent/s of a U.S. citizen are potentially eligible for the IR5 Visa Green Card.

    Still, there are a few fundamental requirements which the U.S. citizen and their parent must fulfil in order to be considered for the visa.

    The U.S citizen must:

    • Be at least 21-years-old
    • Must have financial stability to support the parent until they begin working
    • Live in the U.S and have an American address
    • The parent must live in a foreign country
    • The relationship between the U.S citizen and parent must be proved through a birth certificate

    IR5 Visa Application Process


    As with most U.S immigration applications, the IR5 Visa application process is a fairly long one.

    It has two main stages which are:

    • The petition stage, completed by the U.S citizen
    • The application stage, completed by the applicant

    The applicant cannot begin the IR5 Visa procedure before the petition is accepted.

    The Petition Stage

    The petition is the first step in the whole process of getting an IR-5 Visa. The applicant must complete Form I-130 (Petition for Alien Relatives) and submit it to the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS).

    Generally, it takes a few months for the petition to be processed by the USCIS. Once it has been processed a response will be sent to you.

    If the petition is rejected, you will be notified of the reasons for the refusal and be given the chance to resubmit the petition.

    If the petition is approved, you will be given details of the next steps in the process from the National Visa Center (NVC) who will then take over the IR5 Visa application from this point.

    An application case number will be in t

    IR5 Visa Application

    Once the petition is approved, the parent/s of the U.S. citizen can begin the official IR5 Visa application process.

    The applicant begins this process by completing the DS-260 (Immigrant Visa Electronic Application) form. This form will ask for general information on the applicant’s background as well as other personal details.

    Once the application is completed, a summary sheet will be displayed. The applicant must print this sheet and keep it safe, as it will form an important part of their portfolio of documents to submit to the NVC.

    Medical Examination and Vaccinations

    The package from the NVC will also provide information on the medical examinations and vaccinations which the prospective Green Card holder will need to undertake.

    The parent/s will need to go to a licenced doctor to take the medical examination and be given the required vaccinations.

    You will need to be able to provide signed confirmation of the medical examination and vaccinations which you have taken.

    These documents will also form part of your portfolio of documents.

    What are the Required Documents for an IR5 Visa?

    The applicant will need to send a number of documents as part of the IR5 Visa application. The purpose of these documents is to prove that the applicant fulfils the eligibility criteria.

    The specific documents which need to be provided will depend on the particular circumstances of the applicant.

    Still, the following documents will need to be included in all IR5 Visa applications:

    • A valid passport for more than 6 months after your planned entry into America
    • A signed I-864 (Affidavit of Support form from the U.S petitioner)
    • The confirmation page of the DS-260 form
    • Medical examination and vaccination documents
    • A valid birth certificate which proves the relationship between the applicant and the U.S citizen
    • Two photographs (according to U.S Visa photograph requirements) for each individual who wants to apply for the IR5 Visa
    • Any court and criminal records and/or police certificate
    • If the applicant has ever served in the military, they must bring their military records

    What Happens During the Interview?

    After all the documents have been sent, the NVC will schedule an interview for the applicant at the U.S embassy in the country which they are applying from.

    An immigration official will conduct the interview, asking you questions related to your application. The interviewer will decide whether to grant you with the permission to enter the United States based on the information you provide.

    If they are satisfied and you are approved, you will be given a sealed package which you must bring with you when you travel to the United States. When you arrive in the U.S., you need to give this package to the border official.

    What are the Fees for an IR5 Visa?

    There are a number of fees to consider with an IR5 Visa Green Card application.

    • Form I-130 filing fee
    • Processing fee for Form DS-260
    • Any fees for translation of your documents
    • Medical examination and vaccination fees
    • Fees to be paid to the USCIS as an immigrant

    The specific fees for the IR5 Visa will depend on the country from which the person is applying.

    How Long Will it Take for my IR5 Visa Application to be Processed?

    The IR5 Visa is an Immediate Relative application which means there isn’t any limit to the number of people who can get one in any given year.

    This means that an IR5 Visa applicant will not have to wait for their application to become current before beginning the IR5 Visa application. If and when the petition is accepted, the applicant can begin their application.

    Access to American Healthcare With an IR5 Visa

    Recipients of an IR5 visa will likely not be eligible for US healthcare benefits such as Medicare or social security benefits, as they will first need to earn 40 qualifying credits to access most federal benefits such as these. As this would typically take around 10 years’ worth of full-time work to accrue, it is highly recommended that individuals with IR5 visas make alternative arrangements for healthcare when they arrive in the US.

    Most often, this will be through private medical insurance in advance of the visa holder coming to the US. For children sponsoring their parents to come to the US, it may be possible to add them to an existing healthcare plan. It’s important to ensure that individuals carefully plan well in advance to ensure that they have adequate healthcare in the US as soon as possible after they settle in the US, or preferably before.

    What Can I Do if I Am Not Eligible for the IR5 Visa?

    Unfortunately, if a parent of a US citizen is not eligible for an IR5 visa, then there are limited options available to facilitate their settling in the US.

    Of all the family-based green card visas available, the IR5 visa is the only one available that specifically allows parents to move to the US. However, if the parent in question has other ties to the US, then it may be possible for them to pursue an alternative route to obtaining a green card. These include (but are not limited to) the following:

    • IR1/CR1 visa – if the parent is the spouse of a US citizen
    • K1 visa – if the parent is to marry a US citizen
    • F4 visa – if the parent is a sibling of a US citizen
    • F2A – if the parent is the spouse of a US lawful permanent resident

    The parent may also wish to explore alternative US green card routes, such as an employment-based green card visa. These will normally require the applicant to meet a range of base eligibility criteria and requirements, such as educational qualifications, relevant work experience and a valid job offer from a US-based employer.

    Finally, if no green card visa is suitable for the parent to apply for, then a B2 tourist visa may be the most likely way of being able to enter the US, albeit only on a temporary basis. B2 visas are valid for up to 6 months at a time.

    How can the Immigration Advice Service Help Me?

    For more information on the required documents for an IR5 Visa, call us now on +1 844 290 6312. Our immigration law specialists are highly experienced in Immediate Relative visa applications, and understand what it takes to formulate a successful application.

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              Frequently Asked Questions

              If you are the parent of a U.S. citizen, you may be eligible for an IR5 Visa. To meet all the requirements set by the Immigration bureau, you must:

              • Be at least 21 years old;
              • Have a son or daughter who is a U.S. citizen and has a valid address in the country;
              • Have adequate financial stability to support yourself;
              • Be able to prove your kinship with your U.S. sponsor through a valid birth certificate.

              Before you can submit your IR5 Visa application, your adult child must file a Petition for Alien Relatives (Form I-130).

              Your petition must include any necessary paperwork to prove your kinship with the U.S. citizen. This includes birth certificates or adoption documents.

              IR5 Green Card applications are usually processed within a few months. At the end of this process, the USCIS will notify both you and your child its decision. If your application is denied, you will receive further instruction on how to proceed and to reapply to avoid any mistake.

              Otherwise, your case will be handled by the National Visa Center (NVC). At this stage of your IR5 Visa application, you will receive the instructions you will need to get your visa. You will also be summoned for an interview at your local U.S. Embassy.

              To support your application, you and your child who lives in the U.S. must provide evidence of your kinship. Is the NVC is unable to prove your relationship, your petition will be delayed or rejected.

              The following are the documents that your US Visa for Parents portfolio must contain:

              • Your passport, valid for more than six months after the date you plan to enter the U.S.;
              • An Affidavit of Support (Form I-864) signed by your U.S. sponsor;
              • Medical examination and vaccinations documents, signed by an accredited professional;
              • Valid birth certificate or adoption documents proving your relationship with an adult U.S. citizen;
              • Complete court and criminal records of both you and your child;

              Do not forget to submit any other paper that you believe it may be relevant to prove your kinship with your child. You can either provide your evidence together with your application form or bring it with you at the time of your interview.

              There is no limit to the number of US Parent Visa that can be approved every year. This means that, if successful, your application can be accepted as soon as the approval process is completed.

              The IR5 Visa processing time usually takes from 6 six months to 1 year. However, if the USCIS needs more document to review your case, your petition may be delayed.

              If your application is rejected, you will receive a letter stating the reasons for refusal. At this point, it is recommendable to submit a new petition, following the advice of your immigration lawyer.

              The following are only some of the issues that can make your IR5 Visa processing time longer:

              • Missing or incorrect documents;
              • Providing fraudulent information;
              • The U.S. citizen petitioner does not meet one or more IR5 Visa requirements.

              At IAS, we want every family to live happily in the U.S. For this reason, we work hard to help U.S. citizens to rejoin their parents and settle in the country.

              Family Visas applications are one of our immigration lawyers’ main areas of expertise. Our advisers have already helped several clients get their visa, and they are ready to discuss your case as well.

              As a part of our bespoke immigration service, we offer:

              • A dedicated immigration expert who will handle your case;
              • Help gather your supporting documents;
              • Arrange an accredited translation of your records that are not written in English;
              • Liaison with the USCIS if needed.

              Get in touch today with our experts. You can call us on +1844 290 6312 or use our online contact form.