Family Immigration Attorneys in Atlanta, Georgia
One of the most common ways for immigrants to get a green card and live in the U.S. lawfully is through a relative who is either a citizen or a lawful permanent resident (LPR) because U.S. immigration law allows LPRs and citizens to help certain family members immigrate to the U.S.
At Immigration Law Center Inc., we know how difficult it is when families are separated. That is why we are here to help you navigate the complexities of U.S. immigration law and strive to ensure that you and your family can come to and stay in America. Reach out to our office in Atlanta, Georgia, to discuss your family-based immigration options. We also provide immigration law services in Birmingham, Alabama.
Types of Family-Based Visas
A family-based visa is a type of immigration visa that permits foreigners to reunite and live with their relatives in the U.S. Obtaining a family visa is one of the most common pathways to permanent residency when immigrants have family members in the United States.
There are two broad types of family-based visas in U.S. immigration law:
Immediate Relative (IR) visas. There is an unlimited number of IR visas available.
Family Preference visas. These visas, on the other hand, are subject to numerical limits each fiscal year.
When seeking an Immediate Relative visa, an immigrant must be an immediate relative of a U.S. citizen to qualify. There are five types of IR visas available to immigrants:
IR-1 for spouses of U.S. citizens;
IR-2 for unmarried children of U.S. citizens (a child must be under the age of 21 to qualify);
IR-3 for orphans adopted internationally by U.S. citizens;
IR-4 for orphans to be adopted in the U.S. by U.S. citizens; and,
IR-5 for parents of U.S. citizens over the age of 21.
Family Preference visas, which are issued by the U.S. government in limited numbers, also have their own qualifications:
First Preference for unmarried children (aged 21 and older) of U.S. citizens and their minor children, if any.
Second Preference for spouses of lawful permanent residents LPRs, their minor children, and their unmarried adult children (aged 21 and older).
Third Preference for married sons and daughters of U.S. citizens as well as their spouses and minor kids.
Fourth Preference for siblings of U.S. citizens, as well as their spouses and minor children (the U.S. citizen sibling must be aged 21 or older).
You might want to speak with a family immigration attorney to discuss the types of family-based visas available to you. Contact Immigration Law Center Inc. to schedule a consultation.
Who Can File for an Immigrant Visa?
Family-based visas are divided into Immediate Relative and Family Preference cases. Eligibility requirements vary depending on the type of visa. Immediate relatives who could file for an IR visa include spouses, parents, and unmarried children below the age of 21.
Relatives who could file for a family-based immigrant visa in a preference case include:
Unmarried adult children (aged 21 and older) of U.S. citizens
Siblings of U.S. citizens
Married children of U.S. citizens
Spouses of LPRs
Unmarried children of LPRs
Determining whether or not you qualify to file for a family-based visa can be complicated. Consider seeking legal counsel from an experienced immigration attorney to discuss your particular situation.
The Process to Obtain the Visa
Typically, obtaining a family-based visa is a two-step process:
The first step in the process is having the U.S. citizen or LPR file a family visa petition.
The second step in the process is having the foreign national who qualifies as a relative file an application for permanent residency.
There are many legal and factual nuances involved in these two steps, which is why it may be a good idea to contact an attorney who will help you navigate the process. The process of obtaining a family-based visa usually involves filing a petition with the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) as well as the Department of Homeland Security.
Once USCIS receives your petition, it must approve it before sending it to the National Visa Center where your petition will be assigned a case number. There may be additional forms that applicants need to fill out depending on whether they apply for a family-based visa as an immediate relative or under the family preference category.
Consider getting assistance from an attorney when navigating the process of obtaining a family-based visa. A family immigration attorney will help you prepare the necessary documentation and ensure that you fill out the forms properly to prevent your petition from being rejected by USCIS.
Family Immigration Attorneys in Atlanta, Georgia
Our family immigration attorneys at Immigration Law Center Inc. provide legal counsel to immigrants exploring their options to work and live in the United States and also U.S. citizens and LPRs who want to bring their foreign national relatives into the country. We are dedicated to providing personalized and compassionate legal service to each client. Reach out to our office for a consultation to discuss your particular situation.