How Do My Family Members File for Their Green Card?

In this entry, we will dig a little deeper into the U nonimmigrant visa and its ability to help family members achieve green card status.

The foreign national who has been awarded U nonimmigrant visa status is considered a U-1, and his spouse, children, and parents could all be considered eligible for Permanent Resident Status if they:

Have never previously been awarded a U nonimmigrant visa of their own, and if

It can be determined that if they were not eligible for permanent status and were forced to return to their home country, that the U-1 filer would suffer extreme hardship.

If all of the criteria outlined fit for you and your loved ones, here is how your family members can file for Permanent Residency.

Of course, this is all assuming that the principle U nonimmigrant visa filer meets all the eligibility requirements for permanent residence, and their green card application (adjustment of status) has either been approved, is being filed simultaneously, or has already been filed.

In order for a qualifying family member of the U-1 who have their own U nonimmigrant derivative visas to be awarded a green card, they must file a Form I-485, Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status.

For a qualifying family member who has never been awarded a U nonimmigrant derivative visa, the form the U-1 must file is the Form I-929, Petition for Qualifying Family Member of a U-1 Nonimmigrant. It is important that the current principle U visa holder be the one to file this form, and it must be filed either at the same time as the U-1’s adjustment of status form, or soon after. It cannot be before.

If the Form I-929 is approved, then the qualifying family member themselves must file a Form I-485, which is the initial form the U-1 derivative holder files. If the qualifying family member is currently outside the United States, they can visit the local embassy or consulate to obtain their visa.

With all of the tips outlined in these posts, hopefully you feel well-enough informed about the U nonimmigrant visa process to know whether it will apply in your situation or not. If you have any doubt, or any further questions, please contact an immigration attorney immediately, and ask for legal advice about your situation.

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