One of the benefits of being a U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident is that you may sponsor a foreign relative to live in the U.S.  It is one of the most popular ways in which a person may lawfully emigrate to America.   Unfortunately, the immigration quota for most countries is oversubscribed, and there is a long waiting list for some types of family members.   Not all relatives are eligible to be sponsored.  For instance, there is no sponsorship category for cousins, nieces or nephews, grandparents, or aunts or uncles.  Generally, if you are a U.S. citizen, you may sponsor:

  • your Husband or wife
  • an unmarried child under 21 years of age
  • an unmarried son or daughter over 21
  • a married son or daughter of any age
  • a brother or sister, if you are at least 21 years old, or
  • a parent, if you are at least 21 years old.

If you only hold lawful permanent residence status, you may only petition for the following type of relatives:

  • your husband or wife, or
  • an unmarried son or daughter of any age.
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