If you are a U.S. citizen or permanent resident, you may be eligible to petition to have your family join you in the United States. Permanent residents are entitled to petition for spouses and unmarried children. Citizens may petition for their spouses, children, parents, and siblings. Depending on the relation, the amount of time it takes to receive a visa will vary.
If you acquired your green card through marriage, you may have been given a conditional green card that expires after two years. This occurs when the you’ve been married for less than two years before being granted residency. If this is the case, you need to file an I-751 Petition within 90 days of your green card expiring. Along with this petition, you’ll need to submit additional evidence that you are still involved in a good faith marriage (or, if the marriage has failed, evidence that you got married with good intentions). After submitting the petition, your permanent residency will be extended for one year while USCIS reaches a decision on your I-751 Petition.
If you are engaged to someone outside of the United States, you may sponsor them to come to the U.S. to get married and become a permanent resident. Before you can do this, you must be able to show that you have visited them abroad at least once, as well as further evidence of the good faith nature of the relationship. After your fiancÃ© receives their visa and enters the U.S., you have 90 days to get married. Then you may apply for your spouse to get their green card. We will note that after the 2015 San Bernardino terrorist attack, there were calls to review the fiancÃ© visa program. Because of this, you may face unforeseen delays or changes in procedure when petitioning for your fiancÃ©.
If you wish to adopt a child who has no parents or whose parents are unable to care for him or her, you may sponsor them to come to the United States so you can adopt them. You must be a U.S. citizen to file this form, and it must be done before the child reaches 16 years of age. Additionally, a study must be performed to ensure that your household is suitable for raising a child.