Family-based

Immediate Relative and Family Preference

At Sethi & Mazaheri, our immigration lawyers have helped numerous families in the US reunite with their family abroad in all categories of family-based green cards. Additionally, our attorneys regularly help file petitions for family members of US citizens who reside in the county and want to adjust their status here.

Our possesses the expertise and experience to help individuals in wide variety of circumstances obtain permanent residence in the US.

Categories of Family Based Visas

Family-based immigrant visas fall into two categories: Immediate Relative and Family Preference. The number of immigrant visas issued to Immediate Relatives of U.S. citizens is unlimited meaning that the beneficiary will receive an immigrant visa shortly after the approval of the petitioner’s I-130.

Family Preference visas which are for relatives of U.S. citizens and legal permanent residents, have annual limitations meaning that a beneficiary will have to wait a considerable amount of time to receive the actual visa even the approval of the I-130. The visa bulletin, which is published monthly on the USCIS website shows how long a beneficiary will have to wait to receive a visa.

The following individuals qualify under the Immediate Relatives classification:

  • Spouse of a United States citizen;
  • Parent of a U.S. citizen over the age of 21;
  • Children of a US citizen (though the children must be unmarried and below 21);
  • Child adopted in or outside of the U.S. by U.S. citizen(s)

The following individuals qualify under the Family Preference classification:

  • Preference Number 1: Adult children of U.S. citizens and their minor children;
  • Preference Number 2: Spouses, children under 18 and unmarried children (over 21) of legal permanent residents (LPRs);
  • Preference Number 3: Married children of U.S. citizens, their spouses and children;
  • Preference Number 4: Siblings of U.S. citizens, their spouses and children (petitioner must be over 21 years old).
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