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I-130 FORM – PETITION FOR ALIEN RELATIVE

The I-130 Petition for Alien Relative is used by an individual who is a U.S. Citizen or Lawful Permanent Resident seeking to prove familial relationship with eligible candidate to immigrate to the United States. The I-130 Petition is the first step in an eligible relative’s immigration process. A relative must then apply to become a Lawful Permanent Resident.

At Tsang & Associates, we have a long history of helping thousands of clients successfully file for the I-130 Petition and will help our clients complete that process from beginning to end.

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LEGAL FEE

Our fee structure is unique to us as we strive to tailor our services for each client individually. We adapt price standards that are capable of fluctuating for each client depending on their unique needs. Clients may retain us for one or all of the above steps/services.

Our typical fee for a standard I-130 case is $1,500, not including government fees and third-party expenses. We are happy to customize a proposal for your case during the consultation. Please see below information.

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CASE PROCESSING OVERVIEW

Step 1: Strategy Session for the I-130 Application

This is the most crucial step for your entire I-130 Application. We will review all of the supporting documents to create a strategy, a customized checklist, and a timeline to serve as the guiding foundation for the entire case preparation.

Step 2: Prepare and Submit the I-130 Application to USCIS

This is the most crucial step for your entire I-130 Application. We will review all of the supporting documents to create a strategy, a customized checklist, and a timeline to serve as the guiding foundation for the entire case preparation.

Step 3: Prepare Client for Interview with USCIS (if applicable)

If an interview is required, we will help guide the client in his/her preparation for the interview with USCIS by simulating the interview and ensuring the client is well-versed in the application material. Our services include a comprehensive strategy for answering inquiries posed, practice questions, thorough feedback, and other tools to help clients succeed during the interview. You can attend the interview by yourself or inquire about our attorney appearance service at an additional cost.

Step 4: Respond to USCIS Requests / Administrative Processing / Status Checks / Fraud Alerts

After the interview, we will review with you the possible responses with USCIS. From additional document requests to continuance notice and fraud alerts, our team takes a pro-active approach towards ensuring that the process is as seamless as possible.

Step 5: Approval is Only the Beginning

You will receive a petition approval notice. Our team will help you prepare for the next steps.

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ADDITIONAL RESOURCES

Checklist of Required Evidence

  • Evidence of U.S. citizenship, lawful permanent residence, or U.S. national status:
    • A copy of your birth certificate, issued by a civil registrar, vital statistics office, or other civil authority showing you were born in the United States; 
    • A copy of your naturalization or citizenship certificate issued by USCIS or the former Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS); 
    • A copy of Form FS-240, Consular Report of Birth Abroad (CRBA), issued by a U.S. Embassy or U.S. Consulate; 
    •  A copy of your unexpired U.S. passport; 
    • An original statement from a U.S. consular officer verifying you are a U.S. citizen with a valid passport; or
    • A copy of the front and back of your Permanent Resident Card (also known as a Green Card or a Form I-551).
  • Evidence of family relationship with one of the following:
    • Spouse: A copy of your marriage certificate
      • Evidence you or your spouse terminated any prior marriages (if applicable)
    • Child: A copy of your child’s birth certificate(s).
    • Parent: A copy of your birth certificate.
    • Brother/Sister: A copy of the birth certificate for you and your sibling.
  • Evidence of the bona fides of the marriage, if petitioning for a spouse:
    • Documentation showing joint ownership of property;
    • A lease showing joint tenancy of a common residence, meaning you both live at the same address together;
    • Documentation showing that you and your spouse have combined your financial resources;
    • Birth certificates of children born to you and your spouse together;
    • Affidavits sworn to or affirmed by third parties having personal knowledge of the bona fides of the marital relationship. Each affidavit must contain the full name and address of the person making the affidavit; date and place of birth of the person making the affidavit; and complete information and details explaining how the person acquired their knowledge of your marriage; and
    •  Any other relevant documentation to establish that there is an ongoing marital union.
  • Proof of legal name change (if applicable); and 
  • Two passport-style photographs (if applicable).

Filing Fee

The updated filing fee for Form I-130 can be found using here. The filing fee for this petition cannot be waived.

NOTE: The filing fee is not refundable, regardless of any action USCIS takes on this petition. DO NOT MAIL CASH. You must submit all fees in the exact amounts.

Who may I file form I-130 for?

If you are a U.S. citizen, you must file a separate Form I-130 for each eligible relative. You may file Form I-130 for:

  • Your spouse;
  • Your unmarried children under 21 years of age;
  • Your unmarried sons or daughters 21 years of age or older;
  • Your married sons or daughters of any age;
  • Your brothers or sisters (you must be 21 years of age or older); and
  • Your mother or father (you must be 21 years of age or older).

 If you are a lawful permanent resident of the United States, you must file a separate Form I-130 for each eligible relative. You may file Form I-130 for:

  • Your spouse;
  • Your unmarried child under 21 years of age; and
  • Your unmarried son or daughter 21 years of age or older.
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SAMPLE & TEMPLATES

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Attorney Brief:  [coming soon] We will provide an attorney brief sample for the I-130 petition.

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Cover Letter: [coming soon] We will also provide a cover letter sample for the I-130 petition.

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Sample Request for Evidence: [coming soon] Requests for evidence can be used to strengthen the case.

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Forms: Here is a list of the forms that are needed by USCIS

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Sample Checklist: [coming soon] We look at the client’s unique situation and create customized checklists to strengthen their cases.

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USCIS Fee Calculator: This is to help calculate how much the filing fee will be.

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USCIS Mailing Address: This address is where it is mailed to USCIS.

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USCIS Processing Timetable: This will help you figure out how long it will take to process.

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ASC Field Offices: Listed are the addresses of the field offices for the bio-metrics.

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FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Does approval of this petition mean that my family member is automatically a lawful permanent resident or they can immediately immigrate to the United States?

No. An approved petition does not give the beneficiary automatic lawful permanent resident status or permission to immediately immigrate to the United States.

When will a visa become available?

When a petition is approved for the spouse, unmarried children under 21 years of age, or parents of a U.S. citizen, these persons are classified as immediate relatives, which means visas are immediately available to them.

When a petition is approved for a U.S. citizen’s sibling or married or adult son or daughter, or for a lawful permanent resident’s spouse, child, or unmarried son or daughter, it is assigned to the appropriate visa preference category. Each year, a limited number of immigrant visas are available for each preference category. The visas are processed in the order in which the petitions are properly filed and accepted by us. To be considered properly filed, a petition must be fully completed and signed, and the filing fee must be paid.

For a monthly report on the dates when immigrant visas are available, call the U.S. Department of State at 1-202-663-1541, or visit their website at www.travel.state.gov.

What if a name has changed?

If either you or the person you are filing for is using a name that is not the same name shown on the relevant documents, you must file your petition with copies of the legal documents reflecting the name change, such as a marriage certificate, adoption decree, or court order.

What if an official document is not available?

In this situation, submit a statement from the appropriate civil authority certifying that the document or documents are not available. You must also submit secondary evidence, which may include one or more of the following records listed below.

A. Religious record: A copy of a document bearing the seal of the religious organization showing that the baptism, dedication, or comparable rite occurred within two months after birth, and showing the date and place of the child’s birth, date of the religious ceremony, and the names of the child’s parents.

B. School record: A letter from the authority (preferably the first school attended) showing the date of admission to the school, the child’s date of birth or age at that time, place of birth, and names of the parents.

C. Census record: State or Federal census records showing the names, place of birth, date of birth, or the age of the person listed.

D. If records like those described above are not available, then you may submit two or more written statements from individuals who were living at the time and who have personal knowledge of the event you are trying to prove, such as the date and place of birth, marriage, or death. The individuals making the written statements do not have to be U.S. citizens. Each written statement must contain the following information regarding the individual making the written statement: his or her full name, address, date and place of birth, full information concerning the event, and complete details explaining how the individual acquired personal knowledge of the event.

Finally, each individual’s written statement must include the following declaration, “I declare (or certify, verify, or state) under penalty of perjury under the laws of the United States of America that the foregoing is true and correct. Executed on [date], [signature].”

E. For parent-child relationships only: If other forms of evidence have proven inconclusive, the petitioner
may submit on a voluntary basis other evidence of a birth parent and birth child relationship to include deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) testing. DNA test results will only be accepted by USCIS from parentage-testing laboratories accredited by the American Association of Blood Banks (AABB). A list of laboratories can be viewed at www.aabb.org/sa/facilities/Pages/RTestAccrFac.aspx.

When a petition is approved for a U.S. citizen’s sibling or married or adult son or daughter, or for a lawful permanent resident’s spouse, child, or unmarried son or daughter, it is assigned to the appropriate visa preference category. Each year, a limited number of immigrant visas are available for each preference category. The visas are processed in the order in which the petitions are properly filed and accepted by us. To be considered properly filed, a petition must be fully completed and signed, and the filing fee must be paid.

For a monthly report on the dates when immigrant visas are available, call the U.S. Department of State at 1-202-663-1541, or visit their website at www.travel.state.gov.

What if I'm filing for a spouse married less than 2 years?

If you have been married less than two years on the date your spouse has obtained permanent resident status, USCIS will grant your spouse conditional permanent resident status for two years under INA section 216. USCIS then requires both you and your spouse to file Form I-751, Petition to Remove Conditions on Residence, during the 90-day period immediately before your spouse’s conditional permanent resident status expires.

Conditional permanent residents have the same rights, privileges, responsibilities, and duties as all other lawful permanent residents. A conditional permanent resident is not limited in his or her right to apply for naturalization, file petitions on behalf of qualifying relatives, or reside permanently in the United States as an immigrant in accordance with U.S. immigration laws.

NOTE: If your spouse fails to timely file Form I-751 to remove the conditional basis of his or her spouse’s permanent resident status, USCIS will terminate his or her permanent resident status and begin removal proceedings.

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SCHEDULE A SESSION

Call or email us to set up your 1-hour consultation. Easily pay the $250 consultation fee over the phone or through our email link. If you would like to have a quick chat with our team before setting up the consultation, feel free to use the calendar on the right to book your 10 minute call.

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