Most adult US citizens (21 years of age or older) who are permanently residing or planning to live in the United States are eligible to apply for and apply for an immigrant visa (also known as green card or permanent residence) for your foreign family, relatives.

There are several requirements that both a US citizen and a foreign relative must fulfill, including the provision of proof of family relationship, such as a birth certificate , and in the case of married couples, proving that the relationship is real and was started in good faith, and not just to obtain immigration benefits.


For immigration purposes, some relatives are considered to be “next of kin” while others are considered part of the “family preference category”.

The waiting time for the next of kin is very short, green card application can be processed very quickly as they do not need to wait for the visa number to become available, the visa number is always available to the next of kin. The waiting time for family members can take several years as they have to wait until a visa number is available.

For immigration purposes, the next of kin of a US citizen is:

• Spouse (wife or husband)

• Unmarried children under the age of 21 (including foster children)

• Parents (father and mother)

For immigration purposes, relatives in the Family Preference Category of a US Citizen are:

• Married sons and married daughters at any age

• Unmarried sons or daughters over 21 years old.

• Brother and sister

Note. In most cases, the family of a green card applicant (spouse and unmarried children under 21) can also apply for an immigrant visa to obtain a green card as a derivative relative.