Who May File I-130 Immigrant Petition and Its Checklist

Updated on 10/02/2020

Do you want to help your family members to immigrate to the United States? If yes, you should get familiar with an I-130 immigrant petition. According to the immigration laws of the United States, only those who have eligible relationship with a U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident (LPR, or called green card holder) can immigrate to the United States through family-based immigrations. Form I-130, Petition for Alien Relative, is the form to be used to establish such eligible relationship.

I-130 Family-Based Immigration


Eligible relationship under I-130 immigrant petition

Specifically, the following relatives of a U.S. citizen or LPR are eligible to immigrate to the United States through I-130 petition:

1.

Spouse of U.S. citizen

 

2.

Biological child of U.S. citizen

However, if the child was born out of wedlock and the natural parent is the father of the child, the child must be legitimated before 18 years of age or a bona fide parent-child relationship existed between the father and the child before the child reached 21 years of age.

3.

Stepchild of U.S. citizen

Only if the marriage between the stepparent and the natural parent of the child lawfully occurred before the child turned 18 years of age.

4.

Adopted child of U.S citizen

Only if the adoption took place before the child turned 16 years of age, or turned 18 years of age if his or her sibling has been adopted by the same U.S. citizen before such sibling turned 18 years of age. Meanwhile, the U.S citizen must have legal custody of and resided with the adopted child for at least two years before or after adoption.

5.

Biological parent of U.S citizen

However, if the child was born out of wedlock and the natural parent is the father of the child, similar eligibility requirement as indicated in item 2 above.

6.

Stepparent of U.S. citizen

Only if the marriage between the stepparent and the natural parent of the child lawfully occurred before the child turned 18 years of age.

7.

Adoptive parent of U.S citizen

Similar eligibility requirement as indicated in item 4 above.

8.

Biological sibling of U.S citizen

However, if either of them was born out of wedlock, and they have same natural father but different natural mother, similar eligibility requirement as indicated in item 2 above.

9.

Stepsibling of U.S. citizen

Only if the marriage between the stepparent and the natural parent of the child lawfully occurred before the child turned 18 years of age.

10.

Adoptive sibling of U.S citizen

Similar eligibility requirement as indicated in item 4 above.

11.

Spouse of LPR

 

12.

Unmarried biological child of LPR

However, if the child was born out of wedlock and the natural parent is the father of the child, similar eligibility requirement as indicated in item 2 above.

13.

Unmarried stepchild of LPR

Only if the marriage between the stepparent and the natural parent of the child lawfully occurred before the child turned 18 years of age.

14.

Unmarried adopted child of LPR

Similar eligibility requirement as indicated in item 4 above.

Not sure if you’re eligible to file an I-130 petition for your relative? You can free check eligibility through DYgreencard without providing any personal information. Free check your eligibility if you are a U.S. citizen and plan to file an I-130 petition for spouse, parent, child, or sibling, or if you are a lawful permanent resident and plan to file an I-130 petition for spouse/child.

What you need to know about filing an I-130 immigrant petition

1. A separate I-130 petition must be filed for each of eligible relative. There is only one exception to this rule. The exception is that if you are a LPR and you file an I-130 for your spouse. In such situation, your minor unmarried child can be included in such I-130 petition. In other words, you don’t need to file a separate I-130 petition for this child. However, as long as you become a U.S. citizen before the child gets the green card, or the child’s age under the immigration laws turns 21 years of age, the child can no longer be included in such I-130 petition and you must file a separate I-130 petition for this child to start over the immigration process for the child. Accordingly, if you plan to become a U.S. citizen or your child will turn 21 years of age in the near future, you’d better file a separate I-130 petition for your child at the early beginning.

2. Filing of an I-130 petition is the first step of immigration process for your eligible relative. To obtain a green card finally, your relative must either apply for an immigrant visa at a U.S. embassy or consulate through Consular Processing, or file an I-485 adjustment of status application if he or she is inside the United States when filing the I-485 application.

3. If you are a U.S. citizen, and plan to help your immediate relative (means spouse, unmarried child under 21 years of age, or parent) immigrate to the United States, you may concurrently file an I-130 petition with I-485 adjustment of status as long as they are inside the United States.

4. If you are a U.S. citizen and file an I-130 for your non-immediate relative, or if you are a LPR, your relative must wait for an immigrant visa number become available before he or she may apply for an immigrant visa or file an I-485 adjustment of status application. Every month, the Department of State publishes a Visa Bulletin to disclose immigrant visa number’s availability. The waiting time for immigrant visa number’s availability ranges from 2-20 years. Click here to learn more about immigrant visa number and visa bulletin.

I-130 checklist

Get a complete I-130 document checklist here. You can also learn more about what happened after filing an I-130 petition in our article I-130 Processing Time-What Happens after Filing.

At DYgreencard, with a much lower price, we can help you prepare a complete I-130 application package, or a concurrent filing of I-130 and I-485 application package. What you need to do is just answer a few simple questions and upload documents to our online platform. Then we take care of the rest. Your entire application package will be fully reviewed by an experienced immigration lawyer to ensure its success. Learn more about what we can do for you if you are a U.S. citizen and plan to file an I-130 petition for spouse, parent, child, or sibling, or if you are a lawful permanent resident and plan to file an I-130 petition for spouse/child.

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