It is hard when a family member lives in another country. In the United States, you can apply for an immediate relative visa and change your residency status if you have a close relative that is a U.S citizen. If you are currently in the U.S visiting your loved one, you can do this process without having to go back to your country of origin. As a resident, you will have a Green Card and will be eligible to work and study in the United States, apart from being able to live close to those you love the most.
You can get an immediate relative visa if you are:
- The spouse of a U.S citizen: you will need to provide a marriage certificate and evidence of the relationship, such as photos and correspondence.
- The unmarried child under 21 years of a U.S citizen: you will need to present your birth certificate.
- The parent of a U.S citizen who is 21 years or older: you need to provide your child´s birth certificate, and your name must match the parent´s name on the certificate.
If you are a widow and your spouse was a U.S citizen, you cannot apply for an immediate relative visa. However, you can still get a Green Card, but not under the immediate relative status.
Know the process
The first step you need to take if you want an immediate relative visa is to ask your spouse, child, or parent to file a 1-130 petition for you. The U.S Citizenship and Immigration Services’ approval of this petition can take several months. Once you have the approval, you can continue the process and file Form I-485, the application for permanent residency. You may need to file other forms to get your Green Card, as well as to get a medical examination and vaccination record.
It can be worrying that there are only a certain number of visas that the U.S gives to foreigners per year, but this is not the case with Immediate relative visas. These visas are unlimited, which means that there are always available for those who need them.