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Many U.S. citizens worry about their loved ones back in their home countries. They dream of bringing them to this country to reunite and begin a new life together. However, trying to navigate the U.S. immigration system can be daunting. A dedicated immigration attorney with experience with immediate relative visas in Fort Worth could help make their dream a reality.

When you decide to bring over a close relative to join you in this country, a lawyer could support your decision by guiding you through the visa process and offering you knowledgeable advice.

Who is Eligible to Pursue an Immediate Relative Visa?

Family members of U.S. citizens who qualify for Immediate Relative (IR) visas can sometimes fast-track the immigration process. While a citizen might have a close relationship with many people in their extended family, only some are eligible for an IR visa.

IR visas are only available for the following groups of people:

  • The spouse of a U.S. citizen
  • The unmarried children under the age of 21 of a U.S. citizen
  • The parents of a U.S. citizen who is over 21 years old

In some situations, the widowed spouse of a deceased U.S. citizen can also qualify. The application will automatically convert into the correct kind of petition when their spouse had already filed a visa petition before they died. When their spouse had not started a visa petition, the widowed spouse could file a self-petition as an immediate relative within two years of their spouse’s death. The widowed spouse is eligible when they were not divorced or legally separated at the time of their spouse’s death. A widowed spouse cannot immigrate through an IR visa when they have remarried.

An attorney in Fort Worth could review an applicant’s eligibility and advise them whether filing an immediate relative visa is appropriate.

Steps to Obtain an IR Visa

The U.S. government does not restrict the number of immediate relative visas it issues every year, but obtaining an IR visa can be complicated.

A U.S. citizen needs to start by filing a United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) Form I-130, Petition for Alien Relative. The petitioning citizen must plan to reside primarily in this country for the foreseeable future and file a support affidavit showing they can provide for the needs of their immigrating family members.

A lawyer in Fort Worth could ensure a U.S. citizen follows the correct steps to help their relative obtain an immediate relative visa. They could also help gather the appropriate civil documents, including birth certificates and marriage certificates, to verify their legal status and identity.

Reach Out to a Fort Worth Attorney About an Immediate Relative Visa

Being separated from close relatives can be heart-wrenching. Fortunately, the U.S. government provides a way for citizens to bring their relatives to this country legally. When family members receive immediate relative visas in Fort Worth, they can stay in this country permanently. They no longer need to fear deportation because they will be permanent immigrants.

Reach out to The Meza Law Firm today to learn more about the assistance they can provide to help you through the immigration process.