Parent

Parents of U.S. citizens who are at least 21 years old  are deemed “Immediate Relatives.” As such there are no per country limitations on the availability of an immigrant visa. Only U.S. citizens can sponsor their parents; there is no current immigrant sponsorship for Lawful Permanent Residents to petition for their parents. Further, only U.S. citizens who are at least 21 years old may sponsor their parents.

Stepparents:  A U.S. citizen may sponsor their natural parents as well as their stepparents. However, an adopted child can only sponsor

Adoption impact: If the U.S. citizen obtained an immigration benefit through their adoptive parents (i.e. received the Green Card), then s/he cannot sponsor their biological parents or family members. However, if the U.S. citizen obtained an immigration benefit through some other basis, (i.e. employment, marriage, asylum, etc.) then s/he may still be able to sponsor their biological parents and siblings. However, to do so, they would have to have the adoption terminated in court and re-establish the parent-child relationship.

Lawful Permanent Resident required to live in the U.S. Sometimes parents who have spent most of their lives in their own country are hesitant to live long term. For the Green Card though, once the parent becomes a Lawful Permanent Resident, then it is expected that they spend most of their time in the U.S. as opposed to being abroad. If they anticipate spending more time outside of the U.S. for any reason then they should file a “Re-Entry” permit before going abroad for absences of more than 1 year.

Adjustment of Status or Consular Processing

If the parent is outside of the U.S. then they may file through consular processing for an immigrant visa. These two options are described further below.

  1. Adjustment of Status – if the parent is already in the U.S.
  2. Consular Processing – if the parent is outside of the U.S.

Adjustment of Status (Parent Already In the U.S.)

One Step: Concurrent Filing. If the foreign parent is in the U.S., then an Immigrant Petition (I-130) and the Green Card application (I-485) can be concurrently filed.

Read More

The U.S. citizen must submit evidence of citizenship such as Birth Certificate, Naturalization Certificate, U.S. Passport, etc. The U.S. citizen will also provide an Affidavit of Support. Sometimes a joint financial sponsor may be required. The parent provides evidence of their birth certificate, marriage certificate or evidence of termination of any prior marriage(s). As some of these documents may not be available, MPLG can help identify alternative documents.

At the time of filing, the foreign parent can also apply for interim benefits such as an Employment Authorization Document (EAD) and Advance Parole (AP). The foreign parent should not travel while the case is pending unless they have advance parole, otherwise the application will be deemed abandoned. Unless over the age of 79 years, the foreign parent will receive an appointment for biometrics.

Interview:  USCIS may waive an interview. However, if interviewed both the U.S. petitioner and parent must attend together. The foreign parent must submit a medical exam either when filing the case, in response to a request for evidence, or at the time of the interview. If approved, a Green Card will be mailed to their U.S. address.

Resources: Below we have compiled some helpful resources including a Flowchart, Checklist, and Interview Logistics guide. Visit our resource tabs above for more information about the Affidavit of Support  and the Public Charge Questionnaire .

Flowchart

Family-Based-AOS-Schematic

Checklist

I-130 & AOS Parents Checklist_Page_1

Immigrant Visa Consular Processing (Parent Outside the U.S.):
If the foreign parent is outside the U.S., then the immigrant visa (IV) is issued abroad. This process has 3 stages.

Read More

Stage 1: I-130 Petition with USCIS. The U.S. child files an Immigrant Petition (Form I-130) with USCIS. In support the U.S. citizen submits evidence of citizenship such as Birth Certificate, Naturalization Certificate, U.S. Passport, etc. and evidence of the parental relationship, usually this is their Birth Certificate. For fathers, evidence of parents’ marital relationship should also be provided.

Stage 2: Immigrant Visa Application with National Visa Center. The foreign parent submits online a completed Form DS-260, along with their civil documents, and the U.S. citizen submits an Affidavit of Support. The NVC will then transfer the case to a U.S. Consulate.

Stage 3: Consulate Interview. The U.S. citizen is not required for this. The foreign parent will get their fingerprints and medical exam done prior to the interview. After a successful interview an immigrant visa is stamped into the  petition. The foreign parent should travel to the U.S during the pendency of the immigrant visa, at which point the foreign parent will become a Lawful Permanent Resident upon entering the U.S. and a Green Card will be mailed to their U.S. address.

Resources: We have compiled some helpful resources including a Flowchart, Checklist, and Interview Logistics guide. Visit our resource pages for more information about the Affidavit of Support  and the Public Charge Questionnaire .

Flowchart

Consular-Processing---Family-Based---Schematic

Checklist

Consular Processing Checklist - Parents - 2020.doc_Page_1

Form I-864:  U.S. Immigrations Laws require evidence that the intending immigrant will not become a “public charge.” This requirement is typically satisfied by the filing of an Affidavit of Support on Form I-864 by the petitioning U.S. Citizen or Lawful Permanent Resident backed by evidence that the Petitioner can support the intending immigrant above the poverty guidelines. In some instance, a co-sponsor(s) may be required.

Form I-134:  Similarly, non-immigrants who are visiting the U.S. on a B-2 visa, or fiancés on a K-1 visa and spouses entering on a K-3 visa, must establish that they have sufficient financial support while temporarily in the U.S. This requirement is typically satisfied by the filing of an Affidavit of Support on Form I-134 by a U.S. sponsor. For fiancés and spouses on the K-1 and K-3 visa, respectively, their U.S. petitioning spouse will eventually have to file the Form I-864 Affidavit of Support at the Adjustment of Status stage.

Download MPLG’s Affidavit of Support Checklist – Form I-864. This contains a list of common types of evidence. You may not have every document itemized in this checklist, as it is intended as a guide of possible documents.

Download MPLG’s Affidavit of Support Checklist – Form I-134. Non-immigrant visitors, fiances, and spouses entering on the K-3 visa also require an affidavit of support. This is typically satisfied by the Affidavit of Support on Form I-134. This Checklist contains a list of common types of evidence. You may not have every document itemized in this checklist, as it is intended as a guide of possible documents.

Download MPLG’s Memorandum Re Sponsor Responsibilities for Affidavit of Support. This Memo explains the legal and financial responsibilities of a sponsor. 

The Public Charge is a test to determine if a Green Card applicant will become a financial burden to the United States. While this rule has been in place since the 1800s, the Final Rule published on February 24, 2020 has tightened this burden on the applicant. The applicant is required to provide evidence of their self-sufficiency, including details of their assets and liabilities. This is in addition to establishing the Affidavit of Support requirement.

Download MPLG’s Public Charge Questionnaire Checklist – Form I-944 for Applicants already in the U.S. and adjusting their status. This contains a list of common types of evidence. You may not have every document itemized in this checklist, as it is intended as a guide of possible documents.

For Applicants outside of the U.S. and applying for an immigrant visa at a U.S. consulate abroad, download MPLG’s Public Charge Questionnaire Checklist – DS-5540. This contains a list of common types of evidence. You may not have every document itemized in this checklist, as it is intended as a guide of possible documents.

Parent

Parents of U.S. citizens who are at least 21 years old  are deemed “Immediate Relatives.” As such there are no per country limitations on the availability of an immigrant visa. Only U.S. citizens can sponsor their parents; there is no current immigrant sponsorship for Lawful Permanent Residents to petition for their parents. Further, only U.S. citizens who are at least 21 years old may sponsor their parents.

Stepparents:  A U.S. citizen may sponsor their natural parents as well as their stepparents. However, an adopted child can only sponsor

Adoption impact: If the U.S. citizen obtained an immigration benefit through their adoptive parents (i.e. received the Green Card), then s/he cannot sponsor their biological parents or family members. However, if the U.S. citizen obtained an immigration benefit through some other basis, (i.e. employment, marriage, asylum, etc.) then s/he may still be able to sponsor their biological parents and siblings. However, to do so, they would have to have the adoption terminated in court and re-establish the parent-child relationship.

Lawful Permanent Resident required to live in the U.S. Sometimes parents who have spent most of their lives in their own country are hesitant to live long term. For the Green Card though, once the parent becomes a Lawful Permanent Resident, then it is expected that they spend most of their time in the U.S. as opposed to being abroad. If they anticipate spending more time outside of the U.S. for any reason then they should file a “Re-Entry” permit before going abroad for absences of more than 1 year.

Adjustment of Status or Consular Processing

If the parent is outside of the U.S. then they may file through consular processing for an immigrant visa. These two options are described further below.

  1. Adjustment of Status – if the parent is already in the U.S.
  2. Consular Processing – if the parent is outside of the U.S.

Adjustment of Status (Parent Already In the U.S.)

One Step: Concurrent Filing. If the foreign parent is in the U.S., then an Immigrant Petition (I-130) and the Green Card application (I-485) can be concurrently filed.

Read More

The U.S. citizen must submit evidence of citizenship such as Birth Certificate, Naturalization Certificate, U.S. Passport, etc. The U.S. citizen will also provide an Affidavit of Support. Sometimes a joint financial sponsor may be required. The parent provides evidence of their birth certificate, marriage certificate or evidence of termination of any prior marriage(s). As some of these documents may not be available, MPLG can help identify alternative documents.

At the time of filing, the foreign parent can also apply for interim benefits such as an Employment Authorization Document (EAD) and Advance Parole (AP). The foreign parent should not travel while the case is pending unless they have advance parole, otherwise the application will be deemed abandoned. Unless over the age of 79 years, the foreign parent will receive an appointment for biometrics.

Interview:  USCIS may waive an interview. However, if interviewed both the U.S. petitioner and parent must attend together. The foreign parent must submit a medical exam either when filing the case, in response to a request for evidence, or at the time of the interview. If approved, a Green Card will be mailed to their U.S. address.

Resources: Below we have compiled some helpful resources including a Flowchart, Checklist, and Interview Logistics guide. Visit our resource tabs above for more information about the Affidavit of Support  and the Public Charge Questionnaire .

Flowchart

Family-Based-AOS-Schematic

Checklist

I-130 & AOS Parents Checklist_Page_1

Immigrant Visa Consular Processing (Parent Outside the U.S.):
If the foreign parent is outside the U.S., then the immigrant visa (IV) is issued abroad. This process has 3 stages.

Read More

Stage 1: I-130 Petition with USCIS. The U.S. child files an Immigrant Petition (Form I-130) with USCIS. In support the U.S. citizen submits evidence of citizenship such as Birth Certificate, Naturalization Certificate, U.S. Passport, etc. and evidence of the parental relationship, usually this is their Birth Certificate. For fathers, evidence of parents’ marital relationship should also be provided.

Stage 2: Immigrant Visa Application with National Visa Center. The foreign parent submits online a completed Form DS-260, along with their civil documents, and the U.S. citizen submits an Affidavit of Support. The NVC will then transfer the case to a U.S. Consulate.

Stage 3: Consulate Interview. The U.S. citizen is not required for this. The foreign parent will get their fingerprints and medical exam done prior to the interview. After a successful interview an immigrant visa is stamped into the  petition. The foreign parent should travel to the U.S during the pendency of the immigrant visa, at which point the foreign parent will become a Lawful Permanent Resident upon entering the U.S. and a Green Card will be mailed to their U.S. address.

Resources: We have compiled some helpful resources including a Flowchart, Checklist, and Interview Logistics guide. Visit our resource pages for more information about the Affidavit of Support  and the Public Charge Questionnaire .

Flowchart

Consular-Processing---Family-Based---Schematic

Checklist

Consular Processing Checklist - Parents - 2020.doc_Page_1
Affidavit of Support

Form I-864:  U.S. Immigrations Laws require evidence that the intending immigrant will not become a “public charge.” This requirement is typically satisfied by the filing of an Affidavit of Support on Form I-864 by the petitioning U.S. Citizen or Lawful Permanent Resident backed by evidence that the Petitioner can support the intending immigrant above the poverty guidelines. In some instance, a co-sponsor(s) may be required.

Form I-134:  Similarly, non-immigrants who are visiting the U.S. on a B-2 visa, or fiancés on a K-1 visa and spouses entering on a K-3 visa, must establish that they have sufficient financial support while temporarily in the U.S. This requirement is typically satisfied by the filing of an Affidavit of Support on Form I-134 by a U.S. sponsor. For fiancés and spouses on the K-1 and K-3 visa, respectively, their U.S. petitioning spouse will eventually have to file the Form I-864 Affidavit of Support at the Adjustment of Status stage.

Download MPLG’s Affidavit of Support Checklist – Form I-864. This contains a list of common types of evidence. You may not have every document itemized in this checklist, as it is intended as a guide of possible documents.

Download MPLG’s Affidavit of Support Checklist – Form I-134. Non-immigrant visitors, fiances, and spouses entering on the K-3 visa also require an affidavit of support. This is typically satisfied by the Affidavit of Support on Form I-134. This Checklist contains a list of common types of evidence. You may not have every document itemized in this checklist, as it is intended as a guide of possible documents.

Download MPLG’s Memorandum Re Sponsor Responsibilities for Affidavit of Support. This Memo explains the legal and financial responsibilities of a sponsor. 

Public Charge Questionnaire

The Public Charge is a test to determine if a Green Card applicant will become a financial burden to the United States. While this rule has been in place since the 1800s, the Final Rule published on February 24, 2020 has tightened this burden on the applicant. The applicant is required to provide evidence of their self-sufficiency, including details of their assets and liabilities. This is in addition to establishing the Affidavit of Support requirement.

Download MPLG’s Public Charge Questionnaire Checklist – Form I-944 for Applicants already in the U.S. and adjusting their status. This contains a list of common types of evidence. You may not have every document itemized in this checklist, as it is intended as a guide of possible documents.

For Applicants outside of the U.S. and applying for an immigrant visa at a U.S. consulate abroad, download MPLG’s Public Charge Questionnaire Checklist – DS-5540. This contains a list of common types of evidence. You may not have every document itemized in this checklist, as it is intended as a guide of possible documents.

FAQs