\ afm \ Adjudicator's Field Manual - Redacted Public Version \ Chapter 21 Family-based Petitions and Applications. \ 21.8 Petition for a Parent.
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21.8 Petition for a Parent.
Only a citizen of the U.S. may file a visa petition for a parent. A petition filed by a LPR must be denied.
The petitioner must be at least 21 years old at the time of filing.
In order for the beneficiary to be considered the parent of the petitioner:
The petitioner must have once qualified as the child of the beneficiary under one or more of the definitions contained in section 101(b)(1) of the Act; and
The relationship must continue to exist, even though the petitioner is over age 21 and, therefor, no longer a child. If the relationship has been terminated (as would happen in the case of a stepparent-stepchild relationship if marriage between the stepparent and natural parent were to be terminated by divorce or annulment, or would happen in the case of any other parent-child relationship if the child were to be given up for adoption), the beneficiary would no longer be eligible for classification as a par
ent, even though the petitioner had once been considered to be the beneficiary’s child.
The requirements for establishing the parent-child relationship are the same as with petitions for children, except that the roles of the petitioner and the beneficiary are reversed (see
of this field manual).
In accordance with the instructions on the form, the petitioner must file an I-130 petition, with fee and all supporting documents, with:
the appropriate Service Center, or
the local office having jurisdiction over the beneficiary’s location in the U.S., if the beneficiary is filing a concurrent Form I-485.
Evidence to Support a Petition for a Parent
In addition to evidence of U.S. citizenship as listed in paragraphs (i) through (vi) of
8 CFR 204.1(g)
, the petitioner must also provide evidence of the claimed relationship. See the references below:
8 CFR 204.2(f)(2)(i)
– Primary evidence if the petitioner is a
son or daughter of the beneficiary;
8 CFR 204.2(f)(2)(ii)
– Primary evidence if the petitioner is a
son or daughter of the beneficiary;
8 CFR 204.2(f)(2)(iii)
– Primary evidence if the petitioner is an
son or daughter of the beneficiary; and
8 CFR 204.2(f)(2)(iv)
– Primary evidence if the petitioner is the
son or daughter of the beneficiary.
Petitions for More than Two Parents
There is no limitation on the number of parents for whom a single petitioner may file visa petitions. For example, if the (alien) natural parents of the petitioner divorced and both remarried other aliens prior to the petitioner’s 18
birthday, the petitioner could file petitions for his natural mother, his natural father, his stepmother and his stepfather.
While not as common as marriage fraud, parent-child fraud is a serious problem. The same techniques used to detect and deter fraud in petitions filed for children (e.g., DNA tests) apply to petitions filed for parents. See
of this field manual.
If no adverse information is developed in a case at a USCIS office, the adjudicating officer shall approve the petition and:
Forward it, with all attachments, to the National Visa Center (NVC) so that it may be processed and then forwarded to the embassy or consulate where the beneficiary will apply for an immigrant visa if the alien is outside the U.S. or is unable or unwilling to apply for adjustment of status; or
Retain the approved petition in the beneficiary’s file (i.e., A-file is one is pre- existing or receipt/petition file if no A-file exists) and invite him or her to apply for adjustment of status if he or she is in the U.S., and is eligible to and intending to so apply.
The adjudicating officer will also send Form I-797, Notice of Approval of Relative Immigrant Visa petition, to the petitioner. If no adverse information is developed in a case at a consulate or the embassy, the consular officer will proceed with the processing of the visa application.
. If the petitioner fails to establish eligibility for the benefit sought, the adjudicating officer shall deny the petition and notify the petitioner of the reasons in writing. As required in Chapter
of this manual, the decision must include information about appeal rights and the opportunity to file a motion to reopen or reconsider.
Revocation Proceedings Based on Adverse Information
If adverse information is developed subsequent to the approval of the petition, the petition will be returned to the approving office with a memorandum (and supporting evidence) setting forth the arguments for revocation. When the USCIS office of origin receives the petition with the adverse information, that office shall notify the petitioner of the derogatory information and of the Bureau’s intent to revoke the approval of the petition. The petitioner is to be given the choice of withdrawing the petition
or having a determination of eligibility made in formal revocation proceedings. (See Chapter 20.3 of this field manual.) The USCIS office must notify the immigration or consular officer who developed the adverse information by memorandum of the final action.
If the petition is not withdrawn and the approval is not revoked, the petition and all attachments must be forwarded to the consulate or embassy where the beneficiary has applied or will apply for an immigrant visa. If the adverse information was developed at an overseas DHS office, a memorandum explaining the reasons for not revoking the petition’s approval must be attached to the approved petition.
There are no provisions in the law for issuance of a visa to a dependent spouse or child of a parent of U.S. citizen. If the person in question qualifies as a (step)parent or sibling of the citizen, then that citizen can file a separate petition on his or her behalf. If the person in question does
so qualify, (e.g., if the person in question married the petitioner’s parent subsequent to the petitioner’s 18
birthday) the parent of the citizen could file a second preference petition on his or her behalf, provided all other requirements are met. This may involve considerable delay between the immigration of the petitioner’s parent and the person in question, since the process would require (1) the immigration of the parent, (2) the filing and adjudication of an I-130 petition by the newly-immigrated parent, (3) the availability of a second preference visa number, and (4) all necessary steps and checks in the vi
sa issuance process.
In addition to the following precedent decisions pertaining to visa petitions filed on behalf of parents, the adjudicator should also be familiar with precedents pertaining to visa petitions filed on behalf of children (see
Matter of Hassan
, 16 I. & N. Dec. 16 (BIA, 1976) – In order for a son or daughter to confer immediate relative status upon a parent, the petitioner must be a U.S. citizen, at least 21 years of age, and must have once qualified as the "child" of the beneficiary as defined in 101(b) of the Act.
Matter of Fong
, 17 I. & N. Dec. 212 (BIA, 1980) – The fact that a petitioner has already successfully petitioned for a natural parent does not preclude approval of a visa petition filed on behalf of a stepparent in the absence of a statutory bar such as that existing in section 101(b)(1)(E) of the Act with respect to the natural parents of an adopted child.
Matter of Li
20 I. & N. Dec. 700 (BIA, 1993) - An adopted child may not confer immigration benefits upon a natural parent without regard to whether the adopted child has been accorded or could be accorded immigration benefits by virtue of his or her adoptive status. An adopted child may not confer immigration benefits upon his or her natural sibling, because their common natural parent no longer has the status of parent of the adopted child for immigration purposes.