Family Immigration


Family Based Immigration

Immigration can sometimes be complicated for families. If you intend to bring a family member into the United States, get in touch with our top law firm.

Family based immigration is a frequent occurrence. There are many families that are split up internationally, whether by deportation or by choice. There are many reasons for families to be split up, and sent to different countries. Residency and citizenship is often the main reason for parents to be sent to a different country than that of their children. When a family is split up due to residency, generally the first issue on the family members’ minds is to be reunited with the rest of their family. To ensure that this issue is attended to as quickly as possible, an immigration lawyer in Los Angeles should be contacted immediately.

Family based immigration means becoming a U.S. permanent resident through a family relation. When one family member files an immigration petition, this person is called a sponsor. There are many laws regarding the sponsor, and there are many laws for the beneficiary once they are admitted to the United States. Not every lawful permanent resident can become a sponsor; there are qualifications such as age and relationship that must be met before they can become a sponsor.

Explanation of Family Based Immigrant Visas

Fortunately, there are many different types of visas that can be sought when seeking to immigrate to the United States though a family member. Some of the common unlimited family visas include those for the spouses of U.S. citizens (IR-1), as well as those for the unmarried children under 21 years of age (IR-2), orphans adopted abroad (IR-3), orphans to be adopted in the United States (IR-4), as well as the parents of U.S. citizens (IR-5).

Another form of family based visa is known as “family preference” and is based solely on the specific relatives of lawful permanent residents (LPR) and U.S. citizens. These are limited per year, depending on the type, and are broken down by type of relation. These include the following:

  • F1 – First Preference: Unmarried sons and daughters. Limited to 23,400
  • F2 – Second Preference: Spouses, minor children, unmarried children. Limited to 114,200.
  • F3 – Third Preference: Married sons and daughters. Limited to 23,400.
  • F4 – Fourth Preference: Siblings, and their spouses and minor children. Limited to 65,000.

If interested in sponsoring a family member, such as spousal sponsorship, you will need to file a petition with the USCIS, who will then forward it to the National Visa Center (NVC). Upon receiving it, NVC will assign a case number and it will begin to go through processing. The applicant will then be required to submit all appropriate fees, and later all visa documents, such as the Affidavit of Support, application forms and civil documents. The Supreme Court voted to strike down the federal Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) in 2013 – enabling legally married same-sex couples to obtain immigration benefits and / or sponsor a spouse for an immigration benefit.

Family members who have entered the United States as a refugee or who have been granted asylee status may also be able to help their close family members enter the U.S. in a similar fashion. Derivative refugee or asylee status can be granted to the family of refugees and asylees assuming that the current refugee or asylee entered the country no more than two years prior. This type of derivative status is only made available to spouses and children under the age of 21. To be sure that you are fully aware of the requirements expected of petitioners who are filing for derivative refugee or asylee status, please first speak to an immigration lawyer at our office.

Los Angeles Law Firm Helping with Family Immigration

Family based immigration, such as the obtaining of fiancé(e) visas, can be a difficult process without proper legal help or knowledge of the process. When you are trying to bring a family member into the U.S. there will be many legal procedures to go through, as well as many documents to be provided regarding citizenship or lawful permanent residency. If you are petitioning the United States Citizenship and Immigrations Services to bring a family member into the United States, then you will greatly benefit from the legal expertise of a Los Angeles immigration attorney from Path to Immigration.

  • Family Visitor Visas
  • Marriage Visas
  • Family of Refugees & Asylees
  • Battered Spouses
  • Same-Sex Marriage
  • Consular Processing
  • K-1 Fiancé(e)
  • K-3 Marriage
  • Appeals
  • Student Visas
  • Child Status Protection ActFo
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