Family members are divided into two main categories in the United States immigration system: immediate relatives and preference categories. The number of immediate relatives brought into the U.S. is not limited by any quota system and, as such, immediate relatives are not subject to the same waiting periods as relatives who fall into any of the other family preference categories. Visas for immediate relatives include:
- IR-1 visas for spouses of U.S. citizens
- IR-2 visas for the unmarried children — under the age of 21 — of U.S. citizens
- IR-3 visas for orphans adopted abroad by U.S. citizens
- IR-4 visas for orphans who will be adopted by U.S. citizens
- IR-5 visas for parents of U.S. citizens who are over the age of 21
The preference categories for extended family members:
- FB1 (family first preference) for unmarried sons and daughters of U.S. children, as well as any minor grandchildren
- FB2 (family second preference) for spouses, minor children, and unmarried children over the age of 21 of lawful permanent residents (LPRs)
- FB3 (family third preference) for married sons and daughters of U.S. citizens as well as their spouses and children
- FB4 (family fourth preference) for siblings — who are at least 21 years old — of U.S. citizens as well as those siblings’ spouses and minor children
The lawyers and staff at Rifkin & Fox-Isicoff, P.A. assist sponsors and their family members with the entire immigration process.
The role of quotas in family-based immigration
Only a limited number of family-based preference visas are available each year. If there are more applicants than visas for a set preference category, the sponsor’s petition joins a queue with others who are also waiting for visas. The date they filed their petition becomes their priority date. Approved petitions result in visas once a priority date is reached.
Contact Rifkin & Fox-Isicoff, P.A. today
Our law firm has the skill, expertise, attentive nature and dedication needed to successfully see your case through from the moment your consultation begins until its ultimate resolution. Rifkin & Fox-Isicoff, P.A. represents clients worldwide in matters relating to U.S. immigration and visa applications. Schedule a consultation by contacting us at 305-371-2777 extension 1 or contact us online to schedule a meeting at one of our offices located in Miami and Orlando, Florida, and Lima, Peru.
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