Green Card for Immediate Relatives

Immigration Services - U-Visa

Green Card for Immediate Relatives

Under U.S. immigration laws, immediate relatives include:

• Spouses of U.S. citizens (IR-1);
• Unmarried children under 21 years old of U.S. citizens (IR-2);
• Orphans adopted abroad by U.S. citizens (IR-3);
• Orphan to be adopted in the United States by U.S. citizens (IR-4); and
• Parents of U.S. citizens who are at least 21 years old.

Immediate relatives are permitted to get green cards without any quota restrictions. As a practical matter, most immediate relatives are able to become permanent residents within 12 months.

The U.S. citizen must petition for each immediate relative individually. For instance, if a U.S. citizen woman marries a man with 2 young children, she must submit 3 separate I-130 visa petitions to the USCIS, one for her spouse and one for each of her step-children. Each of these beneficiaries is required to submit a separate application for a green card.

If the marriage on which the immediate relative relationship is based is less than 2 years old, the spouse and children (if any) will receive 2-year green cards.