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Exchanging Rings

Another way to obtain Lawful Permanent Status which allows an individual to work and stay legally in the United States is through a family petition that may be filed by a U.S. citizen or a Lawful Permanent Resident depending on the qualifying relationship.


Under current law, U.S. citizens may petition for the following family members:


  • Spouses

  • Unmarried Children regardless of their age

  • Parents

  • Married Children

  • Siblings


Lawful Permanent Residents may petition for the following family members:


  • Spouses

  • Unmarried children under 21 years old

  • Unmarried children over 21 years old


A U.S. citizen may file an immigrant petition on behalf of his or her immediate relatives (spouse, unmarried children under 21 years old, and parents) concurrently with the application for Adjustment of Status if they are eligible to do so without being subject to an annual quota or waiting times.  On the other hand, the other categories: children over 21 years old, married children, and siblings of United States Citizens, as well as the relatives of Permanent Residents, must wait until the immigrant petition is approved and a visa number becomes available in order to file for permanent residence according to the monthly Visa Bulletin published by the U.S. Department of State.

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