Obtaining a green card through family-based immigration is generally a two-step process. First, you must show that you have a qualifying relationship. Once USCIS has validated that relationship, the foreign national may apply for his or her lawful permanent resident status, either through Consular Processing or Adjustment of Status.
- Immediate relative of a U.S. citizen;
- Defined as the spouse, unmarried child under the age of 21, or parent of U.S. citizen over the age of 21.
- Immediate relatives have special immigration priority and do not have to wait in line for a visa number because there are an unlimited number of visas for their particular categories.
- Unmarried son or daughter over the age of 21, a married child of any age, or a brother/sister of a U.S. citizen petitioner age 21 or older;
- Spouse or unmarried child of a legal permanent resident;
- Battered spouse or child of a U.S. citizen or legal permanent resident;
- Child born to a foreign diplomat in the United States;
- V nonimmigrant;
- Widow(er) of a U.S. citizen;
- Fiancé(e) of a U.S. citizen; or
- Prospective adopted child of a U.S. citizen.