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Family of Refugees & Asylees

If you entered the United States as a refugee within the past 2 years or were granted asylee status within the past 2 years, you may petition for certain family members to obtain derivative refugee or asylee status. If you have not yet been granted or applied for refugee or asylee status, please see the “Refugees & Asylum” link to the right.

You May Petition for the Following Family Members:

  • Spouse 
  • Child (unmarried and under 21 when you first applied for asylum or refugee status)

Eligibility Criteria

  • As the petitioner, you must be a principal refugee or asylee. This means that you were granted refugee or asylee status directly and did not obtain it through a relative.
  • You entered the United States as a refugee within the past 2 years or were granted asylum within the past 2 years.
  • You remain in refugee or asylee status or have become a permanent resident (received a green card). If you have already become a U.S. citizen through naturalization, you cannot petition to obtain derivative refugee or asylee status for a relative. However you may still be able to help family immigrate to the United States. See the “Family of U.S. Citizens” link to the left for more information. 
  • The family relationship had to exist before you came to the United States as a refugee or were granted asylum:
    • If you want to file for your spouse, you had to be married before you entered as a refugee or were granted asylum. See the “Refugee & Asylee Spouses” link to the left for more information.
    • Your child had to be conceived (this means the mother was already pregnant) or born before you entered as a refugee or were granted asylum. See the “Refugee & Asylee Children” link to the left for more information.

Application Process

  • File Form I-730, Refugee/Asylee Relative Petition. (This form is free to file. To download the form and instructions, see the “Forms” section to the right.)

For more information on refugees and asylees, see the “Humanitarian” link to the right.

Last Reviewed/Updated: 09/02/2009