Green Cards (Common)
National Interest Waivers
Professors & Researchers
Executives & Managers
PERM Labor Certification
Investors (EB-5 visas)
Family (Spouse, etc.)
Work Visas (Common)
O-1 Extraordinary Ability
TN Canadians & Mexicans
J-1 Visa Holders
Nurses & Physical Therapists
Green Cards for Brothers and Sisters of U.S. Citizens
Brothers and sisters of U.S. citizens may obtain green card if the U.S. citizen is 21 years of age or older. To qualify as a brother or sister of a U.S. citizen, the brother or sister and the U.S. citizen must share at least one parent in common.
The number of permanent residents in this category is limited to 65,000 per year, plus any visas not used by the first three preferences. The State Department’s Visa Bulletin shows the current wait times for a visa by category.
Immediate family members of the brother or sister (such as their spouse and children) may also receive a green card at the same time.
The process for applying for a green card for a brother or sister depends on whether the sibling is in the United States or outside of the United States. If the alien brother or sister is already in the United States in a nonimmigrant status, the U.S. citizen must file an immigrant petition (called an I-130) on behalf of a brother or sister. The brother or sister must wait for the immigrant visa number to become current before he or she may apply to adjust to permanent resident (I-485). During this waiting period, the brother or sister must maintain valid nonimmigrant status.
If the brother or sister is outside of the United States, the U.S. citizen should file an I-130 immigrant petition. The petition should request that the Immigration Service notify the U.S. Consulate in the country where the brother or sister lives. Once the USCIS approves the immigrant petition and an immigrant visa is available, the National Visa Center of the U.S. State Department sends “Packet 3” to the U.S. citizen. After the necessary forms are completed, the brother or sister goes to the U.S. Consulate overseas to apply for an immigrant visa. The brother or sister becomes a U.S. permanent resident when he or she enters the United States on an immigrant visa.