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What You Should Know About Family-Based Immigration

Written By The Shapiro Law Group on September 28, 2013

There are a number of ways that a U.S. citizen or permanent resident can bring family members into the country. The Chicago immigration lawyers at Shapiro Law Group help families stay together through a wide variety of immigration mechanisms.

Family-Based Immigration

The USCIS gives priority to spouses, dependent children, and parents of U.S. citizens when issuing permanent resident status. Green cards for family members are subject to annual quotas, and approval sometimes takes many years. As we recently reported, the government indicated that as of August 2013, the visas in the F2-A category – the “family second preference” visa specifically allocated to spouses and minor children of legal permanent residents – will be “current,” meaning that petitions to sponsor family members who fall into this category can be processed immediately.
U.S. citizens (including naturalized citizens) may sponsor immediate relatives to enter the U.S. under an immigrant visa (green card), including:

  • Parents
  • Spouses (wife or husband)
  • Unmarried children (sons and daughters)
  • Married children (sons and daughters)
  • Siblings (brothers and sisters)

Permanent residents (foreign nationals holding a green card) may sponsor only:

  • Wives or husbands
  • Unmarried children

International Adoptions

International adoptions also require compliance with the U.S. immigration process. Under U.S. immigration law, there are three different processes through which someone may immigrate on the basis of an intercountry adoption.

  1. Hague Process: The Hague Convention on Protection of Children and Co-operation in Respect of Intercountry Adoption (Hague Adoption Convention) is an international treaty that provides important safeguards to protect the best interests of children, birth parents, and adoptive parents who are involved in intercountry adoptions.
  2.  Orphan Process (non-Hague countries): If the adopted child resides in a country that is not a party to the Hague Intercountry Adoption Convention, he or she may still immigrate to the U.S if the child is deemed an orphan.
  3.  Immediate Relative Petition: A U.S. citizen or permanent resident (green card holder) may petition USCIS for immigration consideration of the adopted child under certain circumstances.

Dedicated Family Immigration Lawyers

The process of bringing family members into the United States by any mechanism is not easy or automatic. The Chicago immigration lawyers at the Shapiro Law Group are dedicated to helping clients deal with a wide range of family-based immigration needs. Our knowledge of USCIS requirements and processes enables clients to bring a spouse, fiancé, child, or relative into the U.S. in the shortest time possible. Whether your family member is already in the U.S. and seeking a green card, or you are filing a new immigration application on their behalf, we can help.

The Chicago immigration lawyers at the Shapiro Law Group are dedicated to helping clients deal with a wide range of family-based immigration needs. Do not hesitate to contact us at (847)564-0712 to speak with an experienced and qualified Illinois family immigration attorney.