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Can I Sponsor My Child if they are 21?

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A parent with a green card can sponsor a child that is 21 years or older. Children over 21 are also known as unmarried “sons or daughters,” per immigration law. To sponsor their child, green card holders must file a visa petition with the help of an immigration attorney. Our law firm helps parents prepare and submit Form I-130 to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), a vital tool in the sponsorship process.

There are many supporting documents as part of the filing process and fees, and if more than one child is involved, green card holders must fill out an additional I-130 form. Our firm handles all necessary paperwork to avoid mistakes and ensure success.

How Long Does Sponsorship Take?

There are many variables involved in sponsorship that impact processing times. Generally, it takes longer for unmarried sons and daughters to get approval. On average, it could take three to four years.

Approval depends on whether the parent is a U.S. citizen, a lawful permanent resident, or a green card holder. How long a sponsorship case takes also depends on the location where it is being processed and where the interview will take place.

Our attorneys work with parents and children to navigate the sponsorship process, accurately file paperwork, and overcome obstacles as they arise to achieve citizenship.

Are there Liabilities to Sponsoring a Child Over 21?

There are responsibilities and liabilities involved in being a sponsor. Once a parent signs an affidavit of support on behalf of a child, they automatically assume legal and financial responsibility.

For instance, parents are financially responsible for their children until they become U.S. citizens or are credited with 40 quarters of work—whichever comes first. Parents must maintain at least 125 percent of the U.S. poverty line based on household size.

If a sponsor isn’t providing financial support according to immigration law, a child might be able to sue. We ensure you are aware of your rights and responsibilities related to sponsorship to avoid legal trouble involving your obligations.

What are the Challenges Associated with Sponsorship?

One of the most frustrating aspects of sponsorship is approval time. Limited visas are available for immigrants overall, and unmarried sons and daughters fall into the preference category. Compared with immediate relatives, this is not a priority category. Because more people seek visas than are available, a continuous backlog prevents more people from becoming U.S. citizens sooner.

We don’t want our clients to waste years of their lives or money spinning their wheels in the immigration system. Contact our immigration attorneys to protect you, your rights, and your family: 408-402-4967.

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