Citizenship Through A Parent

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The Process For Immigrating Through A Parent

Do you need to bring your child from abroad to live with you in the United States? If you are a U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident, you can petition for your unmarried child under 21 to become a lawful permanent resident. Sponsoring a son or daughter over the age of 21 is also possible, but such petitions will likely require several years waiting in the preference system before the beneficiary may become a resident. Unfortunately, the process of immigrating through a parent isn’t always clear-cut and easy. Make the ordeal manageable by hiring an Austin immigration lawyer at the law firm of Walker Gates Vela, PLLC. We are a family-oriented firm with an unyielding dedication to reuniting parents and children on U.S. soil.

 Who Is Considered A “Child’?

While this may seem like a straightforward concept, the United States Immigration and Citizenship Services defines a child as:

  • Genetic children born of wedlock
  • Genetic children born out of wedlock
  • Step-children (when the marriage creating the step-parent’s relationship with the step-child occurred before the step-child’s 18th birthday)
  • Adopted children (as long as the adoption that created the parent/child relationship occurred prior to the child’s 16th birthday)

Fathers petitioning for their children may need to show proof of legitimacy and/or a bona fide parent-child relationship.

The Basic Process For Bring Your Children Into The United States

To petition for your child, you will need:

  • A form I-130, Petition for Alien Relative
  • Birth certificate or proof of relationship
  • Evidence of your U.S. citizenship or legal permanent residency (“Green Card”)
  • Fees and auxiliary items required by the immigration service

The process is slightly different depending on whether your child is already in the U.S., whether he or she entered lawfully, or whether he or she is currently living out of the country. If your son or daughter is not in the United States, they will have to go through a process known as “consular processing” at the U.S. consulate in their home country.

“Consular processing” is also required for children who entered the United States without permission. If your child already entered the country legally, he or she can apply for Adjustment of Status from within the United States. If you are adopting a child overseas, the process is a bit more complicated. Depending on the child’s country of origin, you will either have to follow the Hague Convention Process or the Non-Hague/Orphan Process. Ask our immigration attorneys for more information international adoptions.

Don’t Face The Immigration Process Alone: Speak With An Austin Child Citizenship Attorney

call our experienced Austin child citizenship attorneys at Walker Gates Vela can help bring your child to the United States. We believe in keeping families together, and will work tirelessly to help you achieve that dream. To learn more about our services, contact our firm today.

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