Family Based Residency Petitions

One method of obtaining Permanent Residence in the United States is through a relative who is either a United States citizen or Permanent Resident. The Law Offices of Nishan C. Mahendran has helped many people navigate the path to U.S. citizenship by way of a relative who is a permanent resident or U.S. citizen.

The United States citizen or Permanent Resident family member is considered the sponsor or petitioner and the foreign national is the beneficiary of the petition. There are several steps that must be taken to obtain the ultimate goal of Family Based Permanent Residence.

Initially a Family Petition must be filed on your behalf by your sponsor (relative) with USCIS, which approves an immigrant visa petition for you. Next, the State Department determines if an immigrant visa number is available (immediately) to you. This is the case whether or not the beneficiary is currently in the country. Once an appropriate visa number becomes available, the beneficiary is eligible to become a permanent resident. Visa numbers are monitored in a Visa Bulletin published each month by the United States Department of State.

If you are currently in the country and a visa number becomes available, you may apply to adjust your status to that of a lawful permanent resident. On the other hand, if an immigrant visa number becomes available and you are outside the country, you must then complete your processing at a U.S. consulate.

There are K Visas available for fiancés of United States citizens. The K Visa Petition is also filed with USCIS and, once the petition is approved, the K Visa can be obtained by going to the appropriate regional U.S. consulate to complete the visa processing. Once the K Visa Petition beneficiary enters the U.S., the couple is required to get married within 90 days and then must apply to adjust the K beneficiary’s status to that of a lawful permanent resident.

Sponsor and Beneficiary Requirements

The sponsor or relative must meet certain requirements, including citizenship or resident status, sufficient financial resources to support the relative seeking residence, quantity of relatives and familial relationships allowed (based upon status of sponsor).

The beneficiary must also meet certain requirements, including having a relative with proper status (U.S. citizen or permanent (lawful) resident) who will act as sponsor and file the necessary paperwork, have proof that the sponsoring relative can, in fact, support you and any other sponsored family members and related dependants, and that the sponsored person respects the guidelines regarding quantity and familial relationship types allowed, given the status of the sponsor.

Additional details regarding sponsor requirements and beneficiary requirements for a family-based permanent residence petition are located at the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) web site.

How Do I File a Petition for my Family Member?

The Law Offices of Nishan C. Mahendran, P.A. will be pleased to process your Family based Visa Petition on behalf of you or your family. Please contact our office to schedule an in person appointment or telephonic consultation to discuss your Family Petition.

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