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How To Understand The I-130 For Immigrant Relative Petitions



It’s one of the most common immigration questions I get asked.

Who can I petition to become a legal resident?

This easy-to-use I-130 family petitions graph answers that question.

What Is The I-130 Petition?

The I-130 is officially known as the Petition For Alien Relative. The I-130 is a 12-page application that is used to prove that a valid family relationship between you and an immigrant relative exists.

Filing the Form I-130 is the first step in the family green card process.

Tips On Terminology

Here is a tip on I-130 terminology.

  • Petitioner – You are considered the petitioner if you are sponsoring someone for a green card.
  • Beneficiary – The relative whom you are sponsoring is deemed the beneficiary.

The Immigrant Relative Visa System

Are You A U.S. Citizen Or Lawful Permanent Resident?

This video shows what family members you can sponsor for green cards and why this affects how fast applications move through the immigration process.

There are two categories of family members who are allowed to file Form I-130 and serve as a petitioner – that is, to “sponsor” their immigrant relatives for permanent residence.

Some petitioners are U. S. citizens. Others are lawful permanent residents.

If you are a U.S. citizen, you are entitled to immigrate all of your closest relatives.  Your spouse, your parents, your children, and your brothers and sisters.

If you are a lawful permanent resident, you have fewer options.  You can only immigrate your spouse and your children under the age of 21.

For more detailed information about the step-by-step process to get your I-130 petition approved, see this page: How To Win I-130 Immigrant Petitions And Family Visas

By Carlos Batara

Ready to take a serious and honest look at the strengths and weaknesses of your immigration case? Let’s get started with a personalized strategy and planning consultation . . .

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