People obtain immigration opportunities in a variety of different ways. Some immigrants enter the United States of America to pursue a higher education at a domestic university. Others obtain jobs that require a visa. People sometimes also develop personal relationships that allow them to live in the United States.
When someone born in another country moves to the United States, they often have to leave people that they love behind. Someone who has lived in the United States for years might only see their parents via video chat and may worry about their standard of living as they age. Most people do not want to live the rest of their lives in a different country than their parents. As a result, they may understandably wonder whether they’re in a position to bring their parents into the country to stay with them.
Only citizens can help their parents get a green card
There are fewer opportunities for family-based immigration than people realize. Even close family members, like the parents of a lawful resident, are ineligible for visas and green cards in many cases. Most family immigration programs focus on spouses and children. Thankfully, the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) does have a variety of programs intended to help people maintain family relationships and reconnect with family members still living abroad. There are options for those with visas and green cards, as well as special programs for citizens with family living in another country.
For an adult to help their parents enter the United States, they will typically need to become a United States citizen. The USCIS allows citizens to bring their parents to the United States with a green card. Parents of citizens can become permanent residents if they qualify based on a background check and the submission of appropriate paperwork.
Unfortunately, the current immigration rules in the United States do not allow visa holders to bring their parents with them when traveling to the United States. There are no programs to help permanent residents reconnect with their parents either. Citizenship is typically the only path to helping one’s parents. Seeking legal guidance concerning citizenship can be helpful for those who are committed to reuniting with their parents in the U.S.