Your Immigration
Legal Advocates

What to know about family-based Green Cards

On Behalf of | May 24, 2022 | Family Immigration |

In certain cases in Maryland, green cards are available to noncitizens with relatives who are citizens in the United States when the individual is a lawful permanent resident. This process of becoming a lawful permanent resident under immigration law in the United States is based on the particular type of familial relation, such as spouse, parent, or child who is still a minor. When the application for permanent resident status is based on these family preference categories, it is known as “adjustment of status.”

Family preference categories

Family members falling under the first preference category, which often gets shortened down to F1, include the children of U.S. citizens who are under 21 years old and not married. F2A represents the second tier of preference and applies to the spouse of a lawful permanent resident and their children who are 21 and up.

The third immigration preference category, F3, is limited to people who are children of United States citizens and have gotten married. F4, the fourth preference tier, refers to the siblings of a U.S. citizen so long as the citizen is at least 21 years old.

The eligible types of family members are broken down by level of preference. It is imperative that those who are noncitizens applying for lawful permanent residence understand how each preference category is distinguished.

Preparing to apply

It’s a good idea to thoroughly read through Instructions for Form I-485, Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status. This will save you time and confusion.

It is necessary for those who are not currently in the United States to look into Consular Processing to find out how they can apply for their green cards. The process involves filing an immigrant petition, waiting for a decision and attending an appointment.

Check your eligibility for being a family-preference immigrant to get your green card and ensure that you meet all the requirements before proceeding. Form I-485 must be filed properly, which includes your physical presence in the United States at the time of its filing. An inspection and admission or inspection and parole into the U.S. is also required.