South Florida Family-Based Immigration Attorney

image of happy father and toddler daughter holding up passports

Shannon Rosales Law PA works with families throughout South Florida who wish to bring other family members to the United States. Family-based immigration can help keep families together. Because the number of family-based immigration visas issued each year is limited, working with an experienced family-based immigration lawyer is essential.

Lead attorney Shannon Rosales is well-known as a dedicated advocate of the immigrant community. Ms. Rosales is not only a knowledgeable immigration attorney but also a compassionate person who understands the hardship of family separations. You can trust Shannon to guide you through the family-based immigration process and help your loved one gain admission to the U.S. Contact her office today for a consultation. Se Habla Español.

Understanding Family-Based Immigration in South Florida

The family-based immigration process involves “a petitioner” or the person sponsoring a family member for an immigrant visa or permanent resident status, referred to as the “beneficiary.” To qualify, the petitioner must be:

  • At least 21 years of age
  • A U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident

There are two types of family-based visas – Immediate Relative and Family Preference:

  • Immediate relatives include spouses, parents, and unmarried children (under age 21) of U.S. citizens and orphans being adopted abroad or in the U.S. 
  • Family preference visas for other family members.

Notably, permanent resident status allows a family member to work and live in the U.S. permanently. 

Immediate Relative (IR) Immigrant Visa

There are several types of Immediate Relative visas:

  • IR1 – Spouses of a U.S. citizen
  • IR2 – Unmarried children (under age 21) of a U.S. citizen
  • IR3 – Orphans adopted abroad by a U.S. citizen
  • IR4 – Orphans to be adopted in the U.S. by a citizen
  • IR5 – Parents of a U.S. citizen at least 21 years old

The main benefits of Immediate Relative visas are that (1) an unlimited number are available each year and (2) applicants need not wait for a visa number to become available. 

Family Preference (FP) Immigrant Visa

If your loved one does not qualify for an Immediate Relative visa, they may be eligible for a Family Preference visa. These visas are for more distant family members. Types of Family Preference visas include:

  • Family first preference (F1) – Unmarried, adult children age 21 or over of U.S. citizens
  • Family second preference (F2) – Spouses and unmarried children under age 21 of permanent residents 
  • F2B visas – Unmarried adult children of permanent residents
  • Family third preference (F3) – Married children of U.S. citizens, their spouses, and minor children
  • Family fourth preference (F3) – Siblings of adult U.S. citizens 21 and older, their spouses, and their children

Unfortunately, grandparents, grandchildren, nephews, nieces, uncles, aunts, cousins, and in-laws are not eligible for family preference visas. 

How Does the Family-Based Immigration Process Work?

To obtain an IR or FB visa for your family member, you must file Form I-130, Petition for an Alien Relative, with U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). As the sponsor, you must be able to prove a qualifying relationship with your relative that makes them eligible to enter the United States. Also, the beneficiary must have the following documents: 

  • A passport valid for at least 6 months beyond the proposed date of entry
  • An affidavit of support completed by the sponsor (Form I-864)
  • Application for alien registration
  • Two identifying photographs
  • Other civil documents  – birth or marriage certificates (with translations, if necessary)
  • Completed medical exam forms

You should know that the filing or approval of the petition for an alien relative does not automatically grant immigration status. After the petition is approved, the beneficiary must apply to become a lawful permanent resident with a U.S. embassy or consulate.

How Shannon Rosales Law Can Help With Your South Florida Family-Based Immigration Visa

Obtaining a family-based immigration visa is challenging: the process can be complicated, and the petition and affidavit must be complete and accurate. Your application will be denied if there are mistakes or missing documents, in which case you will have to start over. 

Working with an experienced family-based immigration attorney is the best way to bring your loved one to the U.S.  Let Shannon Rosales guide you through the process and assist with:

  • Completing the petition and affidavit
  • Working with your family member(s) to gather the necessary documents
  • Advocating on your behalf before the USCIS

Shannon Rosales has longstanding relationships with immigration officials that can help make the process go more smoothly and avoid the pitfalls of applying for a family-based immigration visa. You can depend on Shannon to provide knowledge, compassion, and support and to do everything she can to reunite your family in the U.S.

Contact Our Experienced South Florida Family-Based Immigration Attorney 

Shannon Rosales dedicates her practice to helping families in Florida bring their loved ones to the U.S. She knows the ins and outs of immigration law and will be your advocate and ally every step of the way. Contact Shannon Rosales Law today so she can start working on your family-based visa application.