Family and Immigration
Foreign applicants may be sponsored for a "Green Card" by a close relative who is either already an U.S. citizen or a Permanent Resident ("Green Card" holder).
U.S. citizens may sponsor their spouses, sons and daughters (under 21 years old) and their parents (if the USA Citizen sponsor is over 21 years old). This is usually a very smooth process which can be completed in a matter of months.
U.S. citizens may also sponsor their sons and daughters over the age of 21 years old, whether married or not and their brothers and sisters (if the sponsor is over 21 years old). Processing of these family based cases can take from a few months to several years. Brothers and sisters of U.S. citizens, for example may be on a waiting list for seven or more years.
Permanent Residents (Green Card holders) may sponsor their spouses, children, and adult unmarried sons and daughters for Permanent Residence. The waiting time for sponsoring family members of Green Card holders tends to be much longer than for U.S. Citizen Sponsors---- but as of the Summer of 2013 there is no waiting time or just a short waiting time.. In addition, US Citizen family members can often adjust status while in the USA. Thus, in many cases, it is advisable for the family member "sponsor" to apply for and obtain U.S. Citizenship as soon as possible---- because this will dramatically cut down on the waiting time for processing green cards for immediate relatives.
Guide for U.S. Citizens
Guide for U.S. Citizens:
Guide for U.S. Permanent Residents (Green Card Holders):