What to Know About America I-130 Form
What to Know About America I-130 Form
When immigrating to the United States, one of the most important steps is completing the I-130 form, also known as the Petition for Alien Relative. The form is required in order to bring a family member to the U.S., either permanently or temporarily.
If you are planning to sponsor a relative for immigration to the United States, it is important to understand the details of the I-130 form before starting the process. This guide will provide an overview of what you need to know about the I-130 form.
What is the I-130 Form?
The I-130 form is a document that allows U.S. citizens and permanent residents to petition for certain relatives to come to the U.S. and live there permanently or on a temporary basis. The petition is often used to bring spouses, children, parents, and siblings to the United States.
It is important to note that the I-130 form is not an application for a visa or green card. It is merely the initial step in the process. After the form is filed and approved, the visa or green card application can then be submitted.
Who Can File the I-130 Form?
As mentioned earlier, only U.S. citizens and permanent residents are allowed to file the I-130 form. U.S. citizens can file for their spouse, children, parents, and siblings, while permanent residents can only file for their spouse and children.
U.S. citizens must be at least 21 years old to file the I-130 form for their siblings. Additionally, the sponsor must be willing to support the relative financially, as the U.S. government requires a guarantee that the relative will not become a public charge.
What Documents are Required for the I-130 Form?
When filing the I-130 form, certain documents must be submitted along with the form. These documents may vary depending on the relationship between the sponsor and the beneficiary.
The following documents are generally required:
– Photocopies of both the sponsor’s and the beneficiary’s passports or birth certificates
– Photocopies of any marriage certificates, divorce decrees, or death certificates that apply to either the sponsor or the beneficiary
– A copy of the sponsor’s citizenship or permanent residency status, such as a green card or passport
– Proof of any name changes, such as court orders or marriage certificates
– Proof of the sponsor’s income, such as a recent tax return or pay stub
– Payment for the filing fee
It is important to note that the I-130 form must be accompanied by the correct fee. The fee can vary depending on the relationship between the sponsor and the beneficiary. If the fee is incorrect or not submitted at all, the application may be rejected or delayed.
How to File the I-130 Form?
The I-130 form must be filed with the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). The form can be filed online or through mail. If filing online, the application can be submitted through the USCIS website. If filing through mail, the application should be sent to the appropriate USCIS office.
When filing the I-130 form, make sure to follow all instructions carefully and provide all required information and documents. Any missing or incorrect information can delay processing or result in rejection of the application.
After the I-130 Form is Filed
After the I-130 form is filed, the USCIS will review the application to ensure that it is complete and all required documents have been submitted. If the petition is approved, the beneficiary can then proceed to apply for a visa or green card.
If the petition is rejected, the sponsor will receive a notice explaining the reasons for the rejection. In some cases, the sponsor may be able to file an appeal or a new petition with additional documentation.
Q: How long does it take to process the I-130 form?
A: Processing times can vary depending on factors such as the relationship between the sponsor and the beneficiary, the USCIS workload, and the location of the USCIS office. Generally, it can take several months to a year or more for the USCIS to process the petition.
Q: Can I file the I-130 form for someone who is already in the United States?
A: Yes, as long as the beneficiary entered the country legally and is not in violation of any immigration laws.
Q: Can I file the I-130 form for a same-sex spouse?
A: Yes, same-sex spouses are now recognized by the U.S. government for immigration purposes.
Q: Can I file the I-130 form for a fiancé?
A: No, the I-130 form is only for family members, not fiancés. A separate form, the I-129F, (Petition for Alien Fiancé(e)), must be filed for a fiancé.
Q: Can I file the I-130 form for myself?
A: No, the I-130 form can only be filed by a sponsor on behalf of a family member.