Barrera Legal Group can help with applying for a Green Card through Family Based Consular Processing
A noncitizen of the United States may be eligible to apply for legal permanent resident status also known as a green card if the noncitizen has a qualifying family member who is either a legal permanent resident of the United States also known as a green card holder or a United States Citizen.
Qualifying Family Members
U.S. Citizen or Legal Permanent Resident Spouses,
U.S. Citizen or Legal Permanent Resident Parents,
U.S. Citizen Siblings and
U.S. Citizen sons or daughters aged 21 years or older.
Note that for adult noncitizen sons or daughters who are being petitioned by a Legal
Permanent Resident Parent, these sons or daughters cannot be married.
Preference Category Family Members.
Noncitizen Adult sons or daughters of legal permanent resident or United States Citizen parents, siblings of United States Citizens and spouses being petitioned by legal permanent residents are considered a lesser family-based preference category which require a wait on a line based on green card slots made available each year. In some cases, like spouses of legal permanent residents, the wait can be months while most other preference categories can involve a wait of many years. Barrera Legal Group discusses this waiting period subject to what is known as a priority date here.
Immediate Family Members
Noncitizen minor children petitioned by United States Citizen parents, noncitizen parents, petitioned by United States Citizen sons or daughters 21 years or older and spouses of United States Citizens are considered Immediate Family members and are not subject to green card slot availability and do not have to wait on the line for an available green card slot.
Barrera Legal Group can help with the Family Based Consular Processing Application Process
First Step in Family Based Consular Processing-Barrera Legal Group can help with filing an Immigrant Petition with USCIS for all Green Card Cases.
The first step in the Family Based Consular Processing Application is to have the qualifying petitioner submit the initial green card petition known as the I-130 petition with the United States Citizenship and Immigration Service also known as USCIS. This petition will include documents establishing the qualifying relationship which will likely be birth certificates and marriage certificates for marriage-based cases.
Second Step in Family Based Consular Processing-Barrera Legal Group can help with applying for the Immigrant Visa in Consular Processing Cases.
Upon processing and approval of the initial immigration petition, I-130 with USCIS, USCIS notifies the Department of State of the approval. However, the Department of State will only proceed with the case when the filing date also known as the priority date on the initial immigration petition is current where the Department of State is processing immigrant visa applications with immigration petitions filed on or before the priority date published by the Department of State in what is called the Visa Bulletin. Barrera Legal Group discusses priority dates and the visa bulletin here.
Once the priority date is current, or if the case has a petitioner who is an immediate relative, the case is then taken by a Department of State sub-office, known as the National Visa Center or the NVC. The NVC will then create a case for the noncitizen beneficiary where the noncitizen can proceed to apply for the immigrant visa using the NVC’s system known as the Consular Electronic Application Center (CEAC). Once the case is created in the CEAC, the noncitizen and petitioner will be instructed to pay the Immigrant visa application fees.
The immigrant visa is the travel authorization document that will be stamped in the beneficiary’s passport to allow the beneficiary to enter the United States to come and live in the United States as a legal permanent resident.
After the fees are paid, the applicant will be able to fill in the online application known as the DS-260 and upload what are known as the civil documents in support of the family based consular processing application to the CEAC system. Civil documents are typically biographical type documents such as birth certificates, marriage certificates and passports as well as required documents proving that a relationship is real in marriage-based family cases.
Barrera Legal Group can help you with submitting the Immigrant Visa Application for family based consular processing.
In all family based consular processing cases, the petitioning family member must also complete and upload USCIS form I-864 which reports the number of family members supported for a green card and the financial income of the petitioner or of a financial co-sponsor. Barrera Legal Group can also help you with uploading all the required documents.
Once all required documents have been uploaded and the DS-260 has been completed, the NVC will begin to review the application and supporting documents to determine whether the application is documentarily complete to schedule the immigrant visa interview at the consulate post. Otherwise, if the application is considered to be deficient, the NVC will notify to provide additional information or correct documents.
If the application is determined to be complete and the interview date is scheduled, the case will then be sent from the NVC to the Consular Post for the review and final decision by a consular officer.
Barrera Legal Group can prepare you for the Family Based Consular Processing Interview
Before the family based consular processing interview the noncitizen beneficiary and any derivative applicant are required to schedule a medical appointment with an authorized physician in the country where the interview will take place. This exam must be with an embassy-approved doctor, also referred to as the Panel Physician
At the family based consular processing interview, the beneficiary will be fingerprinted and is expected to bring certain documents such as the appointment letter, the DS-260 confirmation page, photographs and original or certified copy version of all civil documents submitted to the NVC. Barrera Legal Group can help prepare you for the consular interview.
The officer will then interview the beneficiary and decide whether to approve or deny the application. If denied, it may be that the officer requires additional information or documents before making a decision and will advise the beneficiary of the additional information or documents needed and how to provide them.
Some family based consular processing cases may require further review known as administrative processing which could be based on many different reasons but is most typically caused by a security concern in the noncitizen’s background that requires more thorough security checks.
Approval of Family Bases Consular Processing
If the case is approved in the family based consular processing case, the officer will provide instructions on when the Passport and Visa will be returned or ready for pickup after the interview.
Once the beneficiary receives the passport and visa, he must travel to the United States no later than the visa expiration date printed on the visa. The noncitizen must also pay a fee to have USCIS generate the actual green card to mail to the beneficiary after the beneficiary enters the United States with the immigrant visa.
Once the beneficiary enters the United States, he will be processed by Customs and Border Protection where upon entry into the United States, the beneficiary is now considered a lawful permanent resident or a green card holder. There will be no further steps to take other than to wait for the green card to arrive in the mail.