Our family-based immigration team has the knowledge and experience to assist US citizens in sponsoring sibling for green card. Our family-based immigration attorneys have helped numerous US citizens through the process of applying green card for siblings. Although the green card for siblings processing times are long, the F4 family-based fourth preference category is an immigration option that should not be discounted as it has helped unite numerous families in the United States.
This article describes the green card for siblings process and aims to answer questions such as, “can US citizen apply green card for siblings?” If you have specific questions related to sponsoring sibling for green card, please contact our law firm so that one of our family-based immigration lawyers can review the specifics of your case and provide a custom tailored strategy for your and your sibling’s immigration case.
Green card for siblings category
Sibling green cards fall into the F4 family-based fourth preference immigrant visa category. The term sibling for US immigration purposes includes biological siblings, half-siblings, step-siblings (as long as your parents married before either you or your sibling turned 18), and adoptive siblings (as long as the adoption occurred before 16 years of age). Generally, if you obtained US citizenship through adoption, you cannot sponsor your biological sibling for a green card. If you are wondering whether your relationship with your siblings allows you to sponsor them for a green card, contact an experienced family-based immigration lawyer who can advise you on whether you are eligible for applying green card for siblings.
Unfortunately, the US government makes a limited number of F4 category green cards available every year. Due to the limited availability of sibling green cards and the large number of F4 green card applications received every year, there is a significant backlog in the F4 sibling green card category. We discuss the green card for siblings processing time in detail below. In summary, generally, green card for sibling processing times take longer than 10 years.
Green card for siblings eligibility
Before answering the question of how to apply green card for siblings, you must make sure that you are eligible for sponsoring sibling for green card. To be eligible to sponsor a sibling green card you (1) must be a US citizen over the age of 21. If you are a green card holder, you cannot sponsor your sibling for a green card. Read the “can green card holder petition sibling” section below for more information on this subject. The second requirement for a sibling green card is that (2) you be able to prove the sibling relationship. If you are sponsoring a biological sibling with whom you share the same parents, then a birth certificate will generally suffice. However, if you are sponsoring a step-sibling or an adoptive-sibling, you should be prepared to provide additional documents to prove that your sibling qualifies for a green card in the F4 category. To sponsor your sibling for a green card you will also have to (4) submit an affidavit of support in which you promise that you will financially support your sibling. In order to qualify as a sponsor for affidavit of support purposes, you have to make above a certain income threshold. If you do not make above this income threshold, you will need to obtain a joint sponsor who meets the minimum income requirements. Finally, (5) your sibling cannot be inadmissible to the United States. If your sibling is inadmissible to the United States, for criminal convictions, prior immigration violations, health related grounds, or other inadmissibility grounds, then your sibling will not be able to obtain a sibling green card.
Can green card holder petition sibling?
A green card holder cannot petition a sibling for a green card. Only a US citizen is eligible for sponsoring sibling for green card. However if you are wondering “can green card holder petition sibling?” all is not lost. After 5 years of being a green card holder, you can file an application for naturalization. Once you become a naturalized US citizen, you are eligible for applying green card for siblings.
Green card for siblings processing time
The green card for siblings processing time is over 10 years. This is due to the limited number of F4 category green cards made available every year and the high number of applications received every year. To check the green card for siblings processing time, you can visit the Visa Bulletin which shows the current backlogs. It is important to note that it is not the processing times that take so long, but the backlog in which your sibling will have to wait for the government to even start processing the sibling green card application. See the section below titled, “how to apply green card for siblings” which explains the whole sibling green card process.
How to apply green card for siblings?
If you are wondering, “how to apply green card for siblings” or “how to file green card for siblings” the below step-by-step guide will provide an explanation for the green card for siblings process.
Step 1: File form I-130, Petition for Alien Relative, with all relevant supporting evidence with US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). Once this immigrant petition is approved, your case will be transferred to the National Visa Center for further processing.
Step 2: The dreaded waiting time. During this time your sibling will wait until the priority date on the case becomes current at which point, your sibling will be able to file her application for a green card. The priority date is the date on which USCIS received the I-130 petition. You can use this priority date to determine based on the Visa Bulletin when your sister may file her application for a green card.
Step 3: Once your sibling’s priority date becomes current, your sibling will be able to submit the green card application. More specifically, your sibling will file an application for an immigrant visa on Form DS-260 together with all necessary supporting evidence with the National Visa Center. Once the National Visa Center reviews the application it will be transferred to the US embassy or consulate which will adjudicate your sibling’s visa application.
Step 4: Your sibling will schedule an interview date with the US embassy or consulate. Before the interview, your sibling will also attend a medical exam conducted by a US government approved physician to ensure that your sibling is not inadmissible due to health related reasons.
Step 5: Your sibling will attend the immigrant visa interview. During the interview, the officer will go through the application and all submitted documents. The officer will evaluate whether your sibling qualifies for a sibling green card. Once the officer approves your sibling’s application, your sibling will be issued an F4 immigrant visa.
Step 6: Your sibling will use the immigrant visa to travel to the United States. Once your sibling enters the United States, the US government will mail your sibling a green card to the US address indicated on the application.
Can a US citizen sponsor a sibling for a green card?
Yes, a US citizen can sponsor a sibling for a green card. As this article has demonstrated, if you meet certain eligibility requirements, as a US citizen you can sponsor a sibling for a green card. So if you are wondering, “can US citizen apply green card for siblings?” the answer is Yes!
Green Card for Siblings Immigration Services
Are you a US citizen wishing to sponsor a green card for siblings or wondering how to apply green card for siblings? Our family-based immigration attorneys have the knowledge and experience to devise the best immigration strategy for your needs to sponsor your sibling for a green card.
During your consultation, our family-based immigration lawyer will provide an honest assessment of your case, and a recommendation about your next steps.
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