Hightstown, NJ asked in Immigration Law for New Jersey

Q: Is there a way for a Green card holder to have a parent come to live in the US BEFORE citizenship? And a sibling?

I’m a green card holder and can apply for citizenship in 2 years. My mom currently lives with my sister abroad. My sister will come here or go to Canada for college on an F1 visa. I want my mom to be able to move here too as she has no one else left in that country. If my sister studies here, can my mom accompany her and live here? Also I can apply for my moms GC after I become a citizen, but will my sister have to leave the country after college because applying for a sibling can take 10-20 years? Is there a way I can have them both move here. Perhaps if I start a mini business with my mom, and try to get her here on a business visa? I want to know what options I have because I really want her to be able to move here and not have her be left alone. Also if my sister comes here on an F1 visa, can I apply for her immigration once I become a citizen and have her stay here?

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1 Lawyer Answer
Hector E. Quiroga
Hector E. Quiroga
  • Immigration Law Lawyer
  • Las Vegas, NV

A: It is a complicated process. First, you can’t petition for your mom until you are a citizen. Your mom can try to come as a tourist, but the amount of time she will be allowed to stay is limited, and the government will likely be suspicious that she will overstay and apply for a green card once your get your citizenship.

Your sister can apply for an F1, but if consular officials determine for any reason that her ultimate goal is to remain in the US it could be denied. If your sister does get an F-1 visa, she might find other venues that would allow her to stay.

You really should consult with an immigration attorney, given the complexity of what you are trying to do.

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