13 May Is This the Right Time for U.S. Citizens to File Green Card Petitions for Their Parents?
Although family-based petitions account for over two-thirds of all immigration approvals, the future may bring increasing legislative scrutiny and quota restrictions, as lawmaking discussions focus on business immigration visas.
In its 2017 Yearbook of Immigration Statistics, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security recorded 1.1 million total immigrant approvals. 516,000 of these approvals were for U.S. Citizens sponsoring immediate relatives: parents, brothers and sisters, spouses, and offspring. A further 232,000 approvals were for green card holders sponsoring spouses and offspring. In contrast, only 137,000 employment-based approvals were issued in 2017.
However, policy makers have called for a greater focus on business immigration, and even proposed cutting back on family-based immigration. In talks held earlier this year, the White House discussed business immigration policies with agency leadership and U.S. industry representatives. This echoes its political direction from 2017, when the White House supported the RAISE Act, which would proposed eliminating Green Cards for extended family members, including for siblings and adult children of U.S. citizens and Green Card holders.
This movement to reduce family immigration is not new. The Skills Act of 2013 also sought to create new categories of eligibility for foreigners with advanced STEM degrees, but also proposed eliminating the category of U.S. Citizen petitions for brothers and sisters.
With a possibly bumpy road ahead for family-based immigration categories, U.S. Citizens and Green Card holders who wish to petition for their relatives should consider making use of existing categories now.
Consult with I. A. Donoso & Associates today for your family-based or business-based immigration questions and find out your best options under U.S. immigration law.
I.A. Donoso & Associates, LLC, is a law firm based in Washington, D.C., and is recognized as a leading immigration law firm with recognized expertise in visas for EB-5 investors, professionals and academics.