Short-term/ long stay family visitor visa for USA requirements: Supporting documents for application, general visitor visa requirements, USA visas for child visits, application form information, U.S. embassy contact details, New York visit visa for family.
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Family Visitor Visa for USA



Family Visitor Visa for USA
The Immigration and Nationality Act allows for the immigration of foreigners to the United States based on a relationship to a U.S. citizen or legal permanent resident. There are two groups of family based immigrant visa categories: Immediate Relative Immigrant visas and Family Preference Immigrant visas.

Visa types
Immediate Relative Immigrant visas are based on a close family relationship with a United States (U.S.) citizen described as an Immediate Relative (IR). The number of immigrants in these categories is not limited each fiscal year. Immediate relative visa types include:

  • IR-1: Spouse of a U.S. citizen;
  • IR-2: Unmarried chuld under 21 years of age of a U.S. citizen;
  • IR-3: Orphan adopted abroad by a U.S. citizen;
  • IR-4: Orphan to be adopted in the U.S. by a U.S. citizen;
  • IR-5: Parent of a U.S. citizen who is at least 21 years old.

Family Preference Immigrant visas are for specific, more distant, family relationships with a U.S. citizen and some specified relationships with a Lawful Permanent Resident (LPR). There are fiscal year numerical limitations on family preference immigrants, shown at the end of each category. The family preference categories are:

  • Family First Preference (F1): Unmarried sons and daughters of U.S. citizens, and their minor children, if any. (23,400)
  • Family Second Preference (F2): Spouses, minor children, and unmarried sons and daughters (age 21 and over) of LPRs. At least seventy-seven percent of all visas available for this category will go to the spouses and children; the remainder is allocated to unmarried sons and daughters. (114,200)
  • Family Third Preference (F3): Married sons and daughters of U.S. citizens, and their spouses and minor children. (23,400)
  • Family Fourth Preference (F4): Brothers and sisters of U.S. citizens, and their spouses and minor children, provided the U.S. citizens are at least 21 years of age. (65,000)

Whenever the number of qualified applicants for a category exceeds the available immigrant visas, there will be an immigration wait. In this situation, the available immigrant visas will be issued in the chronological order in which the petitions were filed using their priority date.

Grandparents, aunts, uncles, in-laws, and cousins cannot sponsor a relative for immigration.

Documentation process
As the first step, a sponsoring relative must file a Petition for Alien Relative, Form I-130 with the Department of Homeland Security, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS).

After USCIS approves the petition, it is sent to the National Visa Center (NVC). Once received, the NVC will assign a case number for the petition. For family preference immigrant visa cases, when an applicant’s priority date meets the most recent qualifying date, the NVC will instruct the applicant to complete Form DS-261, Choice of Address and Agent. The NVC will begin pre-processing the applicant’s case by providing the applicant and petitioner with instructions to submit the appropriate fees.

After the appropriate fees are paid, the NVC will request that the applicant submit the necessary immigrant visa documents, including the Affidavit of Support, application forms, civil documents, and more.

Required documentation:

  • Passport(s) valid for 60 days beyond the expiration date printed on the immigrant visa.
  • Affidavit of Support (Form I-864, I-864A, I-864 EZ, or I-864W, as appropriate) from the petitioner/U.S. sponsor.
  • Form DS-260, Immigrant Visa and Alien Registration Application.
  • Two (2) 2x2 photographs.
  • Civil Documents for the applicant (and petitioner in IR-5 and F4 cases).
  • Completed Medical Examination Forms.

Interview and processing time
Once the NVC determines the file is complete with all the required documents, they schedule the applicant’s interview appointment. NVC then sends the file, containing the applicant’s petition and the documents listed above, to the U.S. Embassy or Consulate where the applicant will be interviewed for a visa. 

Each applicant should bring a valid passport to the interview, as well as any other documentation above not already provided to NVC. A consular officer will interview the applicant, and the consular officer will determine whether the applicant is eligible to receive an immigrant visa in accordance with U.S. immigration law.

Family preference immigrant visa cases take additional time because they are in numerically limited visa categories. The length of time varies from case to case and cannot be predicted for individual cases with any accuracy.

Links to Related Information:

Embassy Contact Information:

Contact the nearest Embassy / Consulate for USA for the most up-to-date information on what documentation you specifically may require to enter USA.

Disclaimer: The contents of this page and other such web pages on this website are provided in good faith as a general information guide only, and the use of this website as an information resource or other is at the viewer/user’s sole risk. While every effort is made in presenting up-to-date and accurate information, no responsibility or liability is accepted by the owners to this website for any errors, omissions, outdated or misleading information on these pages or any other website to which these pages connect or are linked.

Source & Copyright: The source of the above visa and immigration information and copyright owner/s is the:
The U.S. Department of State – URL: www.travel.state.gov

The viewer/user of this web page should use the above information as a guideline only, and should always contact the above sources or the user’s own government representatives for the most up-to-date information at that moment in time, before making a final decision to travel to that country or destination.

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