Family-Based Immigration Lawyer in Orange County
Helping Immigrant Families Realize Their American Dream
Securing legal residency in the U.S. through a family relationship can be confusing. It can be difficult for families to know what immigration options are out there and which ones are right for them. When you work with our Orange County immigration attorneys at Yekrangi & Associates, we can provide you with simple explanations of immigration laws, your available options, and your chances of success. Our goal in every case is to assist you with the beginning-to-end process; from filing the initial petition to getting your family member to the U.S. through the immigrant visa consular process.
Who Can Apply for a Family-Based Visa?
To apply as an immediate relative of a U.S. citizen, you must be one of the following:
- Spouse is a U.S. citizen
- An unmarried child of a U.S. citizen, and under 21 years of age
- A parent of a U.S. citizen who is at least 21 years of age
To apply as a non-immediate relative of a U.S. citizen, or as a relative of a LPR (lawful permanent resident) under the “family-based preference categories,” you must be one of the following:
- 21 years of age or older, unmarried, and have a U.S. citizen parent
- 21 years of age or older, married, and have a U.S. citizen parent
- 21 years of age or older, and have a U.S. citizen sibling
You can also apply as:
- The fiancé of a U.S. citizen (K-1 nonimmigrant)
- The child of a fiancé of a U.S. citizen (K-2 nonimmigrant)
- Widow(er) of a U.S. citizen who passed away after you were married
The United States Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS) also recognizes adopted/step children, albeit with some restrictions. A widow or widower of a U.S. citizen can also obtain permanent resident status in the United States.
How to Appeal a Denied Family-Based Visa Application
If your application for a family-based visa has been denied, you have 30 days to appeal; if it’s been revoked, you have 15 days to appeal. If an appeal before the Administrative Appeals Office or the Board of Immigration Appeals is unsuccessful, you have another 30 days to appeal that decision.
Do Lawful Permanent Residents Have "Immediate Relatives"?
A lawful permanent resident, also known as a green card holder, does not have any immediate relatives until he or she becomes a United States citizen through naturalization.
What Are the Benefits of Being an "Immediate Relative"?
USCIS, per the laws and regulations of the Immigration and Nationality Act, treat immediate relatives very differently than other relatives. For example, the spouse of a US citizen who entered the United States with inspection but is out of status, is eligible for adjustment of status. A parent of a US citizen who is at least 21 years or older will have their unauthorized work forgiven. In addition, immediate relatives have a visa immediately available, which means there are no long delays to getting a green card.
Consult Our OC Family-Based Immigration Attorney Today
Fully understanding the process and careful preparation is required during the family-based immigration process. If you need help, contact our immigration attorneys at Yekrangi & Associates, who can guide you or your loved one through each step of the way. We represent family immigration clients in Orange County, including Anaheim, Irvine, Mission Viejo, and other areas of Southern California.
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