The desire to build a better life in the United States is one of the most common reasons people decide to immigrate from their home country. This is especially true for families with young children. However, some of these scenarios may involve wanting to immigrate while pregnant, which can add more gravity to an already stressful process.
At Maison Immigration, our team of experienced and compassionate immigration lawyers can help you through this challenging process. If you have questions about the immigration process, contact us today to set up an initial consultation.
Can You Immigrate to the United States While Pregnant?
Generally, there’s no rule that bars you or anyone else from immigrating to the United States if you’re pregnant. That said, under 9 FAM 402.2, a person cannot:
- Cross the border to the United States for the express purpose of giving birth.
However, there’s an extra factor to keep in mind, especially if your due date is approaching. In early 2020, the U.S. State Department (DOS) introduced significant changes to its regulations, limiting the eligibility of pregnant women to secure B-2 tourist visas for traveling to the United States.
The aim is to deter “birth tourism,” which involves coming to the U.S. with the intention of giving birth to ensure automatic U.S. citizenship for the child. These changes, however, don’t affect other methods of obtaining citizenship, such as permanent residency (green cards) or a work visa (H-1B).
So, there are a variety of different ways to immigrate to the U.S. while pregnant. That said, every situation is different, and you may have to provide important details and other documentation in order to be let in.
What Do You Need to Immigrate to the United States While Pregnant?
Actually immigrating to the United States while pregnant is not the easiest situation, but is nonetheless important for a variety of different reasons. Again, you can’t immigrate to the U.S. with the express purpose of giving birth, but it’s important to understand how the process works and what you’ll need to consider if you are pregnant:
- Visa category – Determine the appropriate visa category for your situation. Your choice of visa will depend on your relationship to a U.S. citizen or permanent resident, your employment situation, or other factors.
- Petition sponsor – In most cases, you will need a sponsor who is a U.S. citizen or a permanent resident to petition on your behalf. The sponsor’s relationship to you or their employment connection will dictate the type of visa you can apply for.
- Immigration forms – Complete the required immigration forms and submit them along with any supporting documents. These forms may vary depending on the visa category, and our team can help you.
- Medical examination – You may be required to undergo a medical examination as part of the immigration process. Being pregnant is not typically a disqualifying factor, but it’s essential to disclose your pregnancy to the medical examiner.
- Background checks – Expect background checks as part of the immigration process to ensure you meet admissibility requirements.
- Consular processing – If you are applying for an immigrant visa from outside the U.S., you will need to complete an interview at a U.S. embassy or consulate in your home country.
- Adjusting status – If you are already in the U.S. with a nonimmigrant visa and wish to change your status to an immigrant visa, consult with U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) to explore your options.
Immigration rules can be tricky and they might change, so it’s a good idea to talk to our team of immigration lawyers and check official government sources for the most up-to-date and accurate information that applies to your situation.
Benefits of Giving Birth in the United States as an Immigrant
Obviously, giving birth in the United States provides a lot of benefits for immigrant families. Usually, these include the following:
- Birthright citizenship – The United States practices birthright citizenship, which means that any child born on U.S. soil is automatically granted U.S. citizenship. This can be a valuable opportunity for immigrant families, as it provides their child with U.S. citizenship and access to various rights and privileges.
- Education and healthcare access – U.S.-born children have access to the American education system and healthcare services, which can be beneficial for their future development and well-being.
- Family reunification – Having a child born in the U.S. can potentially facilitate family reunification. For example, it may help with sponsoring other family members for immigration or citizenship.
- Protection from deportation – While the child is a minor, their U.S. citizenship can offer a degree of protection from deportation for the parents. However, this is not absolute, and immigration laws can change.
- Future opportunities – U.S. citizenship opens doors to a wide range of future opportunities, including employment and the ability to sponsor family members for immigration. It also grants access to government benefits and social services.
- Cultural and social integration – Being a part of the American society from birth can lead to better cultural and social integration for the child. They grow up in the U.S. culture, which can be advantageous for their personal and professional development.
How Maison Immigration Can Help
While immigration can be difficult, particularly if you’re pregnant, working with our team of experienced immigration lawyers at Maison Immigration can ease the process. We provide the following services to help our clients:
- Support and guidance
- Help with paperwork
- Communication with immigration authorities
- Legal advice
- Support appeals
- Keeping you updated on status and changes in policy
Contact Maison Immigration Today
At Maison Immigration, we understand how difficult the immigration process can be, especially if you’re pregnant or have other considerations to deal with. Our team of experienced immigration lawyers can provide you with valuable guidance and support to meet your goals. Contact us today to set up a consultation and learn more about your options.