How To Sponsor an Immigrant

Immigrants standing beside rail

There are many countries in the world that experience a regular influx of immigrants, particularly developed countries. The United States of America has the most numbers of immigrants for any country, though. You can find different people with diverse nationalities. Africans, Mexicans, Canadians, and Filipinos prefer to live in America, because of its highly developed industry and numerous job opportunities.

Before being able to set foot on the “land of the free,” you need to have either a student visa, tourist visa and immigrant visa (among other different types). The first two are only allowed for limited time of stay, while the last one will enable you to be an American citizen eventually. You need to obtain a green card to become a permanent citizen, but the process of obtaining one is often difficult. It will be a big advantage to have someone who is already in the United States. That person may sponsor you to become an immigrant in the country. With that, here are some pointers in providing sponsorship to an immigrant.

Get all the needed forms. You can find and print out all the necessary forms from the website of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services ( Forms vary depending on your relationship with the immigrant. Get the appropriate form and fill it out to acquire a temporary visa for the immigrant you will be sponsoring. Again, be mindful about your relationship or connection with the immigrant, because different types of relationships will require different forms and processes.

Have a brief knowledge of the process. Know the different processes for different types of immigrant. If you are sponsoring a fiancé, fill out form I-129F and file it with the CIS Service Center located in either California or Vermont. You will be given 90 days to get married if your request is approved. For an alien relative, get the I-130, fill it out and send it to the proper address, depending on the state you are from. Pay the required fees and provide the necessary documents, because applications are processed on a first come, first served basis.

If your relative is already living in the United States, have him or her file form I-485 to obtain a green card or permanent residency. If he is living outside the country, wait for the confirmation of approval from the State department about your I-130 request. With regard to those employees who have talent and skill that are in demand in the United States, form I-140 should be filled out.

Sign the affidavit of support. Form I-864 or the Affidavit of Support proves that you agree to sponsor the immigrant by financial means within certain criteria. A copy of your employment and income tax return will be needed for review. If you have a household member who wants to support your sponsorship, fill out form I-864A. Give the appropriate forms to the immigrant then file them with a consular or immigration officer. All you need to do now is to constantly check the CIS website for the status of your application.

Providing a sponsorship to an immigrant is a long and expensive process. You must first gather all the necessary resources you need before proceeding to the filing of the required forms. Nevertheless, it will all be worth it in the end, if you will be able to provide better opportunities to your family or relatives whom you sponsor for immigration.


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