USA and the UK
Overview of Sponsoring Family Members
Green Card holders can sponsor parents to come to the USA as with any other close family member. This requires the same process as sponsoring any other family members.
Basic Requirements to Sponsor a Family Member
Before you sponsor family members, you must ensure that you and your parents fit a range of basic requirements. These include the following:
- You must be a current US citizen or Green Card holder.
- You are required to be over 18 years old with a principal residence in the USA.
- Your parent must be one of your immediate relatives.
Having confirmed that your parent is eligible for sponsorship, you can start the process of bringing them to the USA. This lengthy and complicated process requires you to work closely with the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). The stages are as follows:
- Compile and submit your petition, and wait for approval.
- Apply for a Visa and attend necessary appointments.
- Receive a decision.
The following section details this process.
- Submit your Petition.
- Apply for a Visa and Attend Appointments
- Receiving a Decision
Submit your Petition.
Submitting your petition requires you to send a range of documentation to the USCIS. This begins with Form I-130, where you establish your position as a Green Card holder and define your relationship with the person you want to sponsor.
The other documentation is dependent on the exact nature of your relationship with your parents. Sponsoring your mother is the easiest, requiring a birth certificate with your and your mother’s name and a copy of your Green Card.
Sponsoring your father is more complicated. You will need to supply one of the following:
- A copy of your parent’s marriage certificate.
- Evidence that you were emotionally or financially attached to your father before you were 21 or got married.
- Evidence you were legitimated before your 18th birthday.
Having submitted this documentation, you must wait for notification from the USCIS that your petition has been approved. This may take up to three months.
You must pay the fee of $535 for your petition to be processed.
Apply for a Visa and Attend Appointments
Once your petition is approved, you will need to wait for a visa number to become available, and then your parents can begin applying for their own Green Card.
This requires them to go to a Green Card interview at the US consulate in your parent’s home country. In the interview, an official will verify all claims made in your parent’s application. To increase the chances of success, make sure that your parent:
- Arrives 15 minutes before the appointment begins.
- Dresses smartly and is ready to make a good impression.
- Revises their application details and is ready to share them with the interviewer.
- Ensures that all information is factually accurate.
The interview will be in English, and interpreters are not provided. If your parent is not comfortable speaking English, it is highly recommended that they hire a skilled interpreter.
Your parent may also require a medical examination to ensure they are well enough to immigrate to the US.
Receiving a Decision
After your parent has attended the interview, USCIS will be ready to give you a decision on their application. After a few months, your parent will receive a letter confirming their successful application.
If they are successful, they will receive an immigration visa allowing them to come to the USA.
At the border, they will need to present their visa. In return, they will be allowed entry and receive a passport stamp which will prove they can live and work in the USA.
This stamp will protect their status in the nation until they receive their Permanent Resident Card, which may also take a few months.
As you can see, sponsoring your parent for a Green Card is a lengthy and challenging process. However, the rewards of success are immense, giving your parents the right to live and work in the USA as permanent residents. They may even be naturalized as US citizens if they remain long enough.
These strong rewards mean that many people get assistance from an immigration attorney and advisors to improve their chances of success.
Many use Immigration Advice Service for help. We can help you to compile documentation and fill in Form I-130 for your initial petition. We can then help your parents prepare for their visa interview and arrange an interpreter if needed.
To learn more about how we can help, contact us at +1 844 290 6312 or online.
Last modified on June 26th, 2023 at 10:52 am
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There are no limits to the number of relatives you bring to the USA by sponsoring them through your Green Card. However, they must be immediate family members, meaning the most distant relatives you can bring are first cousins, aunts, uncles, nieces, and nephews.
It is not just a birth parent that can be sponsored under immigration law. This is also the case for an adoptive parent. However, there are some additional requirements. They must present a copy of your adoption certificate confirming you were adopted before your 16th birthday.
The situation is similar if you want to bring a step-parent to the USA. You will require a marriage certificate confirming the marriage occurred before your 18th birthday.
In both situations, all other supporting documents must be supplied as well, including a birth certificate.
Yes, Green Card holders can appeal a refusal of your petition to sponsor family members. You can find information about the reasons for denial, ways to appeal, and the appeal deadline on the denial letter.
When sponsoring a parent, you are subject to an income requirement of 125% of the Federal Poverty Guidelines, which determines the minimum amount someone must earn to stay above the poverty line.
This amount will vary depending on the state you live in and will increase further as you bring more family members to the USA. However, you can expect to require around $24,650.