If I’m a permanent resident in the US and my girlfriend and child are in my home country, how can I get them to live with me and how long will it take?

Asked on November 16, 2015 under Immigration Law, New York


G.J., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

A permanent resident can file an immigration petition with the United States Citizen and Immigration Services office (USCIS). This is known as a sponsorship. There are certain requirements and obligations you must meet in order to file such a petition. Unfortunately, your girlfriend does not meet the criteria for sponsorship. The person you are filing the petition for must be either a spouse, child, parent or sibling. You can file a petition for your child (if this is not your biological child then he/she will not meet the criteria). Each case is decided on an individual basis, so it is not possible to say how long this process will take.

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