Sponsoring A Visa For A Sibling: What To Expect

An opportunity to experience the American Dream is not a benefit you have to keep to yourself. In certain instances, once you have successfully obtained your citizenship, you can work to assist your adult brother or sister with their immigration with a family preference visa. Similar to sponsoring a spouse, the process does come along with its own set of requirements. Here is some of the important information you need to know if you plan to embark on this journey.

There Are Individual Requirements

Keep in mind that the fact that an individual has a green card does not necessarily mean that they can sponsor a sibling for immigration. The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) office explicitly states that the individual serving as the sponsor must be at least 21 years of age, although the age of the sibling you are trying to help does not matter. 

You must also prove that you can support the individual until they can obtain gainful employment. There is no standard amount that you must earn, as the office will consider your personal expenses compared to your income to determine if you qualify. 

If you cannot provide this support, you will need to find another individual who will provide this support so that they can be documented on the application. There are some restrictions on who can serve as a financial sponsor if you cannot, so it is best to speak with an attorney. 

You Must Prove Your Relationship

You have to do more than just state that an individual is your sibling. You will be required to provide proof of your relationship. USCIS offers different ways to go about this process, depending on how you are related. 

If you share both parents or a mother, you and your sibling should be able to present your birth certificates. If you only share a father, the process is a little more difficult. Not only will you be required to provide a birth certificate showing that you two share the same father, but you will also be required to show that your father was married to each of your mothers at some point. 

In some situations, the USCIS might also require that you prove your relationship through a DNA test. An attorney will have to assist you with this step to ensure the test will be validated by the agency.

Immigration laws are ever-changing, and the specifics of each person's situation are different. Therefore, it is always best to speak with an attorney at an immigration law firm who can discuss your case in greater detail and assist you with the process.