Foreignborn.com - US Visas & Immigration
US Immigration and US Visa Help for Foreign-Born for More Than a Decade
Search
Ask a Visa & Immigration Lawyer
US Visa and Immigration Lawyer
Online Now
 letters left
Answers to US visa and immigration questions
A Service of  A Service of The National Association of Foreign-Born     The National Association of Foreign-Born
Related Articles
Share This Article:
Click for Overview | See Related Articles box for more topics »

International Adoption: Immediate Relative Process
(Immediate Relative Intercountry Adoption Immigration Process)

Intercountry Adoption Immigration

International Adoption Immediate Relative Process Immigration Intercountry Adoption

International Money Transfer - International Money Order
THIS ARTICLE

How is the Immediate Relative Process Different from the Hague and Orphan Processes?
The Immediate Relative Process is a third means of international adoption immigration, in addition to the Hague and Orphan processes. It is different from the Hague and Orphan processes in that:

  • The Immediate Relative Process is available to adopting parent(s) who are US Permanent Residents (Green Card holders) as well as to U.S. citizens

  • The adopting parent must have evidence of a full and final adoption and satisfy custody and residence requirements before the adoption may be the basis for immigration benefits

  • Adopted children may petition for their parents and siblings


Who is Considered an Adopted Child Under the Immediate Relative Process?

Under the Immediate Relative Process, an adopted child is considered, for immigration purposes, to be the child (or adult son or daughter) of the adopting parent if:

  • The parent adopted the child before his or her 16th birthday (or before the 18th birthday under certain circumstances as described below); evidence must be submitted of a full and final adoption

    AND
  • The parent had legal and physical custody of the child for at least two years while the child was a minor

    • The legal custody must have been the result of a formal grant of custody from a court or other governmental entity
    • The custody and residence requirement may be met by custody and residence that preceded the adoption
    • The two years’ custody and residence requirements are waived for certain abused children


A child is still considered to be an adopted child if they were adopted after his or her 16th birthday but before his or her 18th birthday, and:

  • The child is the birth sibling of another child who was adopted by the same parent(s) before the other child’s 16th birthday and immigrated through the Immediate Relative Process

    OR
  • The child is the birth sibling of another child who was adopted by the same parent(s) before the other child’s 16th birthday and who immigrated as an orphan based on an adoption by the same parent(s)


Am I Eligible for Adoption Immigration through the Immediate Relative Process?

To be eligible for international adoption immigration (intercountry adoption immigration) through the Immediate Relative Process, you must be a U.S. citizen or a permanent resident (Green Card holder).

U.S. Citizens May File a Petition for an Adopted:

  • Child (unmarried and under the age of 21)
  • Unmarried son or daughter over the age of 21
  • Married son or daughter

A Permanent Resident (Green Card Holder) May File a Petition for an Adopted:

  • Child (unmarried and under the age of 21)
  • Unmarried son or daughter over the age of 21


Application for Adoption Immigration by the Immediate Relative Process
To begin the immigration process for your adopted relative, (as described above), file USCIS Form I-130, Petition for Alien Relative.  For information about where to file and what supporting evidence to submit, see the Instructions for Form I-130.

For additional information on the immigration process for an immediate relative, please see Family Immigration.


Will the Child I Adopt Automatically Become a US Citizen?

If you are a US citizen who adopts a child through the Immediate Relative Process, the child should receive an IR-2 visa. This visa is issued to a child adopted by a US citizen if the child immigrates to the U.S. while unmarried and before his or her 21st birthday (or after the child’s 21st birthday if he or she is treated under the Child Status Protection Act as if he or she were still under 21).

Children with IR-2 visas that are under 18 automatically acquire U.S. citizenship upon entry to the United States if they reside in the United States with their parents (U.S. government or military personnel residing overseas may qualify as residing in the U.S.). Children with IR-2 visas that are over 18 become permanent residents and receive a Green Card.

Children with IR-2 visas who did not automatically acquire U.S. citizenship can apply for naturalization when eligible.


Checking the Status of an Application for Adoption Immigration

You may check the status of your application or case online, by phone, or by contacting an appropriate USCIS office. For details see USCIS Case Status: Check USCIS Case Status for Visas and Immigration. You may also want to review US Visa Wait Times and USCIS Immigration Processing Times. For more assistance, see HELP! (below).


Appealing if an Application is Denied for Adoption Immigration

If your petition is denied, the denial letter will tell you how to appeal. For more information, see How to Appeal if USCIS Denied My Petition or Application (US Immigration, Green Card Denial).


Help! with Adoption Immigration by the Immediate Relative Process

Guides from Our Sponsors
Mortgage GuidesLearn to Study Guide
Health Insurance Plans
Your use of this website indicates your agreement to be bound by our Terms of Use. The information provided in this site is not legal advice, is intended to provide basic understanding in summary form, may not be comprehensive, is subject to change, and may not apply to you. Your individual circumstances should be confirmed with the appropriate government agencies or an attorney.
A Service of  A Service of The National Association of Foreign-Born
The National Association of Foreign-Born