IR5 Visa - Parents Visa USA
The IR-5 parent visa allows US citizens to bring foreign-born parents to the United States as permanent residents.
However, this visa will have to be granted abroad and issued at the US embassy or consulate in the foreign country where the parent resides. You must also be at least 21 to sponsor the IR-5 visa for a parent.
What is the IR5 Visa?
The IR5 visa is the US visa for parents US citizens who are at least 21 years old. It gives them the opportunity to live and work in the US and stay connected with their children as a family in one country. When they receive the IR5 visa, the parents can then work legally in the US without needing an Employment Authorization Document (EAD).
The benefit of the IR5 visa is that because it is an immediate relative visa, it does not have an annual cap or limit. This means that any applicant who fulfills the criteria and has an approved application can get the visa without having to wait for their priority dates to become current.
What are the Eligibility Criteria for the IR5 visa?
Eligibility for an IR-5 visa depends on the US citizen sponsoring being 21 or older, the sponsor having the financial means to support the parent until they start working, the sponsor living in the United States and having a US address, and the sponsor including a copy of their birth certificate to prove the relationship between the sponsor and parent.
How to Apply for the IR5 visa?
The process to apply for the IR-5 visa includes both the US citizen and their parent who have to submit documents and forms. The application process has two parts:
- The US citizen petitions for the parent to US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS)
- Upon approval of the petition, the parent must apply to a US Embassy or Consulate in their home country
Because of this procedure, the parent cannot actually apply for the USA parent visa before the child who is a US citizen gets the petition approved.
Filing the Petition for the Parent
The US citizen or the child of the applicant must file Form I-130, Petition for Alien Relatives to USCIS. The petition must be filled and any necessary documents must be attached in order for it to be complete. Additionally, the US citizen must also pay a filing fee.
The Department of Homeland Security processes petition and takes a few months. After the processing, the USCIS notifies the US citizen whether it has been approved or denied. If the petition is denied, USCIS will let you know of the reasons and you can then reapply. If the petition is approved, it will continue to the National Visa Center (NVC), which will then take over the application process and you will only contact them for any inquiries.
The NVC reviews the petition and then sends the parent or applicant in the foreign country a package with information and instructions. This package contains the applicant’s case number and invoice ID number. Each of these numbers is different for applicants so that they can be identified when the times comes to apply for the IR5 visa.
Establishing the Parent-Child Relationship
All IR (“Immediate Relative”) visa categories have no yearly caps, meaning there is no wait until a green card becomes available.
The first step to becoming a U.S. permanent resident is for the sponsor to file Form I-130 (officially called the “Petition for an Alien Relative”) to establish the parent-child relationship.
The process is a little different depending on where the parent lives. If they are filing from outside the United States, their application will go through consular processing, which means it will be handled by their local embassy or consulate. If they are filing from within the United States, they will go through a process known as adjustment of status.
Establishing the Parent’s Eligibility for a Green Card
The U.S. government follows two different processes to determine a parent’s eligibility for green card, depending on where the parent currently lives.
If the Parent Is Applying From Outside the United States
If the parent is applying from outside the United States:
After Form I-130 has been filed by the sponsoring child, it is processed by U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). When the petition is granted, the parent will be required to fill out Form DS-260 (immigrant visa application) and submit proof that they are the parent.
Once the DS-260 form is submitted, it is sent along with supporting evidence to the National Visa Center (NVC), which processes and reviews the visa application. The NVC may request additional evidence from the parent.
After the NVC processes the application, it will be sent to the embassy or consulate of the country where your parent resides.
If the Parent Is Applying From Within the United States
If the parent is applying from within the United States:
To apply using adjustment of status, the parent seeking a green card must have entered the United States on a valid visa or the Visa Waiver Program.
After the sponsoring child files Form I-130 and USCIS grants their petition, the parent will submit Form I-485 (officially called the “Application for Adjustment of Status”).
After receiving Form I-485, USCIS will mail a date, time, and location for the parent to have their fingerprints taken and eye scanned (known as a biometrics appointment).
IR5 Visa Application Process
Since the IR5 visa does not have an annual cap or priority dates, the parent can start the application immediately after the petition is approved. The applicant should apply for US parents visa at the US Embassy or Consulate in their home country.
In this stage, the US citizen will not have many duties and the decision will now be up to the officials who review the case in the US Embassy.
Complete Medical Examination and Vaccination
The US has requirements regarding a person’s medical history and the vaccination that they must receive in order to live in the country. In the NVC package, the applicant will have instructions about what tests they must conduct and what vaccines they must take.
The applicant must then go to a licensed doctor to complete the requirements and have the doctor sign the documents which prove that those requirements have been fulfilled. These documents will then be attached to the supporting ones to send to the NVC.
Compile the Us Visa for Parents Supporting Document File
In order to strengthen the application, the parent must also attach some supporting documents to send to the NVC. These documents serve to prove that the parent fulfills all the requirements and is eligible to move to the US with an IR5 visa.
In addition to the standard required documents for a US visa, the US parents visa file must contain the following documents:
- Your valid passport for more than 6 months after your planned entry into the US
- A signed Form I-864, Affidavit of Support from the US petitioner (applicant’s child)
- Form DS-260 confirmation page
- Medical examination and vaccination documents
- Valid birth certificate proving the relationship of the US citizen and the applicant
- Two photographs per individual according to the US Visa Photograph Requirements
- Court and criminal records and/or police certificate
- If you served in the military, you must bring your military records
Attend the Visa Interview
After the documents have been sent, the NVC will schedule an interview for the applicant at the US Embassy where they are applying. A US Embassy official will conduct the IR5 Visa interview. They will ask questions regarding the applicant’s background and their reasons for wanting to move to the US. It is important to answer all questions correctly and honestly.
What Should I Expect After My IR5 Visa Is Approved and Issued?
Once the parent is in the United States, USCIS will mail their green card to their U.S. address.
What Are the IR5 Visa Fees That Must Be Paid?
There are various fees that the petitioner and the applicant must pay throughout the application process for the IR-5 Visa. The main categories of fees that must be paid are as follows:
- Form I-130 filing fee.
- Processing fee for the Form DS-260.
- Medical examination and vaccination fees.
- Fees to get and translate all the supporting documents.
- USCIS Immigrant Fee. Which you must pay after you receive your visa and before you travel to the US. USCIS will not issue you a Green Card without you paying this fee.
How Long Is the IR5 Visa Processing Time?
It will take from 6 months up to 1 year for the applicant or parent to receive the IR5 visa. How long it takes to get the IR-5 visa depends on the length of time for processing of Form I-130 and other documents.
Do I Get Access to American Healthcare With an IR5 Visa?
Yes, you will have access to healthcare in the United States as an IR-5 visa holder, however, the costs of getting medical treatment in the US is very high.