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Children’s Immigrant Visa Eligibility If Marriage Is to a U.S. Permanent Resident


I will marry with a U.S. Permanent Resident soon. Can my children also get the U.S. immigrant visa with me?


If your spouse has a U.S. green card, your children who are unmarried and under age 21 are considered derivative beneficiaries. This means that the children will not need a separate initial visa petition of Form I-130 filed for them,  in order to be included in your immigration process and enter the U.S. at the same time with you.

Unlike many other applicants, they also would not need to prove that the petitioning spouse is their parent or even stepparent, because they are riding on the immigrant's application. However, they will have to fill out forms of their own. They will share the immigrant's place on the visa and green card waiting list and most likely get a visa at the same time as the immigrant, provided they remain unmarried.

Children who have gotten married will not be able to immigrate to the United States at the same time as the others. They will have no visa options until the petitioning spouse becomes a U.S. citizen and files a visa petition for them in category 3 of the Visa Preference System, which has a very long waiting period. To do this, the spouse would have to prove that he or she is either the child’s legal stepparent or the biological parent.




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