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Explaining family-based immigration visas in Houston

The immigration law of the United States has two provisions written into it for family-based immigration. The two provisions are family preference categories and immediate relatives. These provisions are found in the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA). Today, we will take a look at family-based immigration visas and how you can acquire them in Houston, Texas.

Family preference immigrant visas are limited visas. These visas are reserved for family members who are more distant than immediate family. People can obtain these visas if they are related to a United States resident or a lawful permanent resident (LPR). There are limits set for each type of visa in this category that reset each year.

The four categories are as follows:

  • Unmarried daughters and sons of residents and their minor children
  • Minor children, spouses and unmarried daughters and sons of LPRs
  • Married daughters and sons of residents and their minor children
  • Sisters and brothers of residents and their spouses or minor children

The Immediate Relative Immigrant visas issued by the Department of State are done so on an unlimited basis. These visas are for immediate relatives of the resident of the United States. The categories are as follows:

  • The spouse of a legal citizen
  • An unmarried child under 12 years of age of a citizen
  • An orphan adopted by a citizen in another country
  • An orphan who is going to be adopted in the country by a citizen
  • A citizen who is 21 or older can acquire a visa for his or her parent

Family-based immigration is pretty straightforward. If you are trying to bring family members to the country in Houston, make sure that you understand the immigration laws related to visas and know how to have them apply.

Source: U.S. Department of State, "Family-Based Immigrant Visas," accessed April 12, 2018

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