Washington, D.C., Family Visa Lawyer

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United States citizens and lawful permanent residents may petition for be permanent resident status for certain relatives who live in the United States or abroad. The petitioning or sponsoring family member must be prepared to demonstrate that he or she can support the prospective immigrant for a period of time after his or her entry into the U.S.

If Your Family Member Is Already in the U.S.

Family immigration is not automatic. The petition must first be submitted to and approved by the United States Citizen and Immigration Services (USCIS) system. Before being granted an immigrant visa, your family member will be subject to a criminal background check and be required to take a medical examination. In general, relatives who are living in the United States on valid non-immigrant visas can petition to adjust their status (become lawful permanent residents) without leaving the country. Immediate relatives of residents of the United States (spouses, unmarried minor children and parents) may adjust their status if they entered with a visa, even if they have since gone out of status. Relatives who live abroad and those who have lived illegally in the United States must apply for their immigrant visas at a U.S. Consulate abroad. Depending on their immigration history and other circumstances, it may be necessary to seek a waiver of inadmissibility.

K-1 Fiance(e) Visas Consular Process

If you are a citizen of the United States who is intending to marry a resident of another country, you may sponsor your fiance(e) to enter into the U.S. prior to your marriage. This process begins with a petition (I-129) to be processed through the USCIS. Upon approval by the USCIS, you will be notified that the application will be forwarded to the local consular office in your fiance(e)’s country of legal residence. Your fiance(e) will be subject to a background check to determine whether health issues, marriage status or criminal record will disqualify him or her for legal entry. In addition, a successful visa application will require verification that a real relationship exists. You will be required to provide assurances that the marriage will take place within 90 days after legal entry into the U.S.

Family Members Who Qualify for a Family Visa

Adult United States citizens may sponsor a family member who is a:

  • Spouse
  • Minor child
  • Single or married adult child
  • Parent
  • Sibling

With the exception of the immediate relatives of United States citizens (spouse, minor unmarried child, parent), a limited number of immigrant visas is available each year for each category of family immigration. This results in different waiting periods for immigrant visas for each category of family members.

Every family visa case is specific to the needs of the individual family. If you live in the Washington, D.C., metro region or surrounding communities in Maryland or Virginian and are considering sponsoring a family member for immigrant visa status, talk to an attorney at Cecil C. Harrigan, PC. Our attorneys have more than four decades of combined years of immigration law experience. We offer many packages of immigration services on a flat fee basis.

Experienced Fairfax Green Card Attorney

Our lawyers represent clients in Washington, D.C., and surrounding communities in Virginia and Maryland. Call us at 202-387-8866 or contact us by e-mail to arrange an initial consultation with an experienced Washington, D.C., family visa attorney. If you hire us for a package of immigration legal services, the initial consultation fee will be credited to your retainer.