The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) Form-130 is the first step in the direction of a foreign national becoming a lawful permanent resident of the United States and obtaining a Green Card. The form is used for purposes of a sponsor proving a relationship with a foreign national relative who intends on immigrating to the United States. If the intending immigrant is a spouse who is a foreign national, the Form-130A is used. Like other immigration forms, the I-130 is complicated and confusing. It must be completed and signed by a U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident who acts on behalf of the intending immigrant relative.
Am I Required to Hire a Lawyer for an I-130?
Retaining an immigration lawyer for purposes of completing a form I-130 isn’t required, but it operates in the best interests of everybody involved. Errors or omissions will cause delays or outright rejection of an I-130 application, especially if there are potential issues with eligibility or your relationship with your relative. By hiring a Central Valley immigration lawyer from Maison Law Immigration Lawyers, you’ll best ensure submission of an understandable and accurate I-130 application. That’s why the involvement of Maison Law Immigration Lawyers is strongly advised.
What Relatives are Eligible for Permanent Residency?
If a person intends on sponsoring more than one relative, a separate I-130 petition and fee must be submitted for each of them. For sponsors who are U.S. citizens, eligible relatives include the following relatives:
- Both unmarried and married children.
- Brothers and sisters when the sponsor is more than 21 years of age.
- A mother or father when the sponsor is more than 21 years of age.
- The sponsor’s spouse.
If a sponsor isn’t a U.S. citizen but holds a Green Card, the Form I-130 petition can be used on behalf of the sponsor’s spouse or unmarried child. There are no quotas on the number of immigrant visas for immediate relatives that can be issued in any given year. Review of an I-130 petition will begin within a month of its receipt by USCIS. Take notice that there are quotas on the numbers for more distant relatives. An immediate relative of a U.S. citizen can expect his or her immigrant visa within six months to a year after submission of the I-130 petition, but a married son or daughter of that same U.S. citizen can expect to wait for about six years. For a more distant family member who is sponsored by a permanent U.S. resident, the visa process can take even longer because of the quotas.
Documents to Accompany an I-130 Petition
The sponsor must prove that he or she is a U.S. citizen or Green Card holder. U.S. citizens can provide copies of their birth certificate, current U.S. passport or naturalization document. Green card holders must provide a copy of their permanent resident card. Both U.S. citizens and Green Card Holders must provide satisfactory evidence of a family relationship with the person they wish to sponsor.
What Happens After an I-130 Application is Approved?
When the alien relative is outside of the United States, he or she can travel to a U.S. State Department Consulate and apply for an immigrant visa. Upon approval of that visa, he or she will receive a visa packet in an envelope that is not to be opened. When the alien relative arrives in the United States, it will be presented to the USCIS official for inspection. Upon passing inspection, permanent residency is approved. The permanent resident’s Green Card will arrive at their residential address by mail a few weeks later.
Contact an Immigration Lawyer Today.
Maison Law Immigration Lawyers represents clients from California’s Central Valley and beyond. We strongly believe that the hard work and sacrifices of immigrant families built the United States. We want to see them to continue to build America even stronger too. Contact us with your questions about Form I-130 or any other immigration issues. We’ll be pleased to take the time to speak with you.