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Can I Sponsor My Sister for a Green Card?

As a US citizen, you can sponsor your sister for a green card. The F4 family-based fourth preference immigrant visa category, allows the brother or sister of a US citizen to obtain a green card. In addition to your sister, your sister’s spouse and unmarried children under the age of 21 will also be able to obtain a green card through your sponsorship. So if you are wondering “Can I sponsor my sister for a green card?”, the answer is an affirmative “Yes!.”   

This article will provide an overview of the green card for sister process and will answer questions, such as “How can I apply for my sister green card?” It is important to note that you can sponsor a green card for your biological sister, half-sister (whether you share a common father or a common mother), step-sister (as long as your parents married before your 18th birthday), or adoptive sister (if the adoption occurred before the age of 16). If you are wondering whether you are eligible to sponsor a green card for your sister, our family-based immigration attorneys have the necessary experience and understanding of the green card for sister process to help you in your immigration case. 

I offer confidential 30 minute & 1 hour consultations.

FAQs

Can I apply for a green card for my sister?

If you are a US citizen, you can sponsor a green card for your sister through the F4 family-based fourth preference category. Due to the high volume of applications and the limited number of green cards made available in the F4 category each year, there is an extensive wait period for F4 category green cards. The current wait times exceed 10 years. So although filing a green card application for sister is possible, in some cases the extensive wait times discourage the filing of such applications. Whether you should sponsor your sister for a green card will largely depend on the other immigration avenues your sister has to the United States. In some cases it may be worth it to petition your sister for a green card even though the green card for sister wait times are long, 

I have a green card. Can I apply for my sister?”

As a green card holder you cannot apply for your sister’s green card. Only a US citizen can sponsor a green card for sister. However, all is not lost if you are wondering “I have a green card, can I apply for my sister?” After being a green card holder for 5 years, you can apply for naturalization. Once you become a naturalized US citizen, you can file a green card application for sister. 

Can I file green card for my sister and her family?

Yes, when filing a green card application for your sister, you can include your sister’s spouse and her unmarried children under the age of 21 in the petition. So if you are wondering “can I file green card for my sister” the answer is, “yes” and you can also sponsor your sister’s immediate family members. 

Can I sponsor my sister for a green card if she is my half-sister?

Yes, you can sponsor a green card for your half-sister. If you are related through your mother, both of your birth certificates should be sufficient proof of a sibling relationship to obtain a green card for your sister. However, if you are only related through your father, you may need to show additional documents to demonstrate the sibling relationship.

Can I sponsor my sister for a green card if she is my step-sister?

Yes, you can sponsor your step-sister for a green card. As long as the sibling relationship between you and your sister was created before your 18th birthday, you can apply for a green card for your step-sister. 

Can I sponsor my sister for a green card if she was adopted?

Yes, you can sponsor your adopted sister for a green card. You can apply for a green card for your sister if the adoption occurred before the age of 16. You should be prepared to submit documents regarding the adoption with your petition for your sister’s green card.

Can I sponsor my biological sister for a green card if I was adopted?

Generally, if you gained US citizenship through adoption, you cannot apply for a green card for your biological sister. However, if you find yourself in such a situation, you should contact a qualified family-based immigration lawyer [https://www.pandevlaw.com/family-based-green-card-immigration]. Whether you can sponsor your sister in such a case depends on the details of how you obtained US citizenship and the exact sibling relationship to your sister. 

Can I file green card for my sister?

You are eligible to file a green card petition for your sister if you are a US citizen over the age of 21 and can demonstrate your sibling relationship to your sister. Additionally, you will also have to submit an affidavit of support on behalf of your sister, in which you agree to financially support your sister. If you do not meet the minimum requirements for the affidavit of support — which can be found here — you will need to obtain a joint sponsor who is willing to sponsor your sister.  

What are the obstacles to a green card application for sister?

The main obstacle in green card for sister applications is providing the necessary documents to establish the sibling relationship. Another obstacle in green card application for sister, occurs when your sister is found inadmissible to the United States. Your sister may be inadmissible if she has prior criminal convictions, immigration violations, or if she has certain health conditions, among other reasons.   

How can I apply for my sister green card?

To sponsor your sister for a green card, you will first need to file an immigrant petition with the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) on Form I-130, Petition for Alien Relative. The filing date of this petition will serve as your sister’s priority date. This priority date will determine when your sister can apply for her green card after your immigrant petition is approved. Each month, the U.S. Department of State publishes the visa bulletin which shows visa availability for all immigrant visa categories, including the F4 visa category. 

Once an F4 visa becomes available for your sister, your sister will be notified by the National Visa Center (NVC), and will then be able to apply for an immigrant visa at a US Consulate or Embassy in her home country. If your sister is in the United States in lawful status when an F4 visa becomes available for her, your sister may be able to file for adjustment of status [https://www.uscis.gov/i-485] in the United States without needing to travel to a US consulate or embassy. 

A step-by-step guide to a green card application for your sister

If you are wondering, “how can I apply for my sister green card?”, we have tried to summarize the main steps below. 

First, the US citizen petitioner must file a Form I-130, Petition for Alien Relative together with the appropriate supporting documents to the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). 

Second, once your I-130 petition is approved, your sister will wait for a visa to become available. When you file the petition for a green card for your sister, the receipt date of your petition will become your sister’s “priority date.” The waiting period will continue until your sister’s priority date becomes current, i.e. you see that applications are being accepted for cases with  priority dates later than your sister’s priority date as shown on the Visa Bulletin. At this point your sister will be able to submit her application for an immigrant visa. 

Third, once your sister’s priority date becomes current, your sister can submit her application for an immigrant visa on Form DS-260. The DS-260 together with all relevant evidence is submitted with the National Visa Center from where it is transferred to the US embassy or consulate that will process your sister’s application. 

Fourth, the US consulate will contact your sister to schedule an interview date. Your sister will also have to schedule a medical exam with a US government approved physician prior to her interview. 

Fifth, your sister will attend her interview at a US embassy and consulate. During the interview the officer will go over your sister’s application and will make sure she is eligible for a sister green card. The officer will also ascertain that your sister is not inadmissible for any reason. If your sister meets all necessary requirements for a green card for sister, your sister will be issued an F4 immigrant visa. 

Fifth, your sister will use her F4 immigrant visa to travel to and enter the United States. Once your sister enters the United States, she will be mailed her green card in the mail to the US address she indicated on her application.   

How long will it take for my sister to obtain a green card?

The wait times for sister green cards are long due to the limited number of F4 category green cards made available each year and the many sister green card applications received by the US government each year. Currently, your sister would have to wait over 10 years after your I-130 petition is approved to apply for a sister green card. You can find more information about visa retrogression in the F4 visa category in the Visa Bulletin.

Green Card for Sister Immigration Services

Are you a US citizen wondering “Can I sponsor my sister for a green card?” If you are wondering can I apply for a green card for my sister, our family-based immigration attorneys can devise an immigration strategy for your sister’s case. Our family-based immigration attorneys have the knowledge and experience with the green card for sister process and can help your sister receive a green card so that she and her immediate family can move to the United States. 

To schedule a consultation with our immigration attorney, please click here and click on “Schedule a Consultation.” You can also email us at [email protected], or call us at (212) 220-6652.

During your consultation, our family-based immigration lawyer will provide an honest assessment of your case, and a recommendation about your next steps.

I offer confidential 30 minute & 1 hour consultations.

Disclaimer: This blog article is provided by Pandev Law, LLC for general educational and informational purposes only. Although this article discusses general legal issues, it does not constitute legal advice nor does it establish an attorney-client relationship. No reader should act or refrain from acting on the basis of any information presented in this article, or elsewhere on this website, without seeking the advice of appropriate legal counsel, or other professional counsel, licensed in the relevant jurisdiction. Pandev Law, LLC expressly disclaims any and all liability with respect to any actions taken, or not taken, based on any content of this article or website. This blog article may constitute attorney advertising. Prior results do not guarantee a similar outcome.