All citizens of the United States who are 21 and older can apply with a petition for their siblings (sisters and brothers) to reside in the USA, holding a Greed Card. Kids that have one common parent (at least) are also referred to siblings. To be called a sibling of a US citizen a person might not be related to him/her by blood.
Stepsisters and stepbrothers (if they have this status legally) can be also referred to siblings. Meanwhile, they should be under the age of 18, when their parents remained married. Adopted kids are also siblings when they were less than 16 when adopted, and the adoption was 100% legal.
However, your sibling won’t be able to immigrate to United States at once. All Green Cards have an annual limit. Siblings come to the category of “Fourth Preference” and therefore they have to wait for many years until they can apply for Green Card. In 2017 individuals who applied for GK based on a Sibling visa, waited more than 13 years! Applicants from some countries wait even longer.
Attention: Holders of GK might not solicit to get GK to their siblings and let them reside in the USA. Check the articles about How to Become a U.S. Citizen.
Getting the USA residence for your sibling consists of several steps and stages. The first one of them is filing I-130 Form. Download it for free at USCIS site. Here the process of filling in and submitting the form that is issued on December, 23, 2016 and has the expiration date of July, 31 2018 is described.
In case when your sibling that was born in another country, lives abroad, he/she will wait the time when I-130 is accepted. His or hers priority date changes then becoming current. Check the information about the time that passes until your priority date becomes current.
I-130 approval is not the fact that your sibling now has all the rights to reside in the US. Sometimes living there can be qualified as illegal presence, and a person will be denied in getting GK, and even denied in applying for permanent residence. In case you know that your sibling lives in the USA illegally, you should hire an immigration attorney.
The documents needed to submit for I-130
Please be ready to prepare the following:
Your USA citizenship that can be your passport or a birth certificate, Naturalization certificate, citizenship certificate or FS-20 Form that reports about you as a person born by an American abroad.
Your relationship with your sibling proof. Siblings that are blood-related persons should be ready providing copies of their birth certificates containing names of your parents. When you were born form different mothers, but have a common father, provide all documents that show marriage termination. Stepsiblings must be ready to prepare the document about marriage, which shows that parents were married before your 18th birthday. Adopted siblings should provide certificates of adoption. Visit USCIS page and read in details about these documents.
Money: $535 for I-130 visa (this sum was defined on December, 23, 2016). Meanwhile, the fee can grow, thus check the updated information at USCIS site http://www.uscis.gov/i-130. You can also make a call, and dial 800-375-5283.
Filing Form I-130
When your petitioner (always the USA citizen) and you have already gathered and prepared everything mentioned above, make copies of each of your personal record. The next step foresees sending petition for a visa to the lockbox of USCIS (see instructions for I-130 Form on USCIS site). After the fee is processed, the petition is forwarded to USCIS for further manipulations.
I have filed for I-130. What is next?
When several weeks since the time you sent the petition for visa passes, you’ll get the USCIS notice. It will invite you checking their site to learn all details about the time when the application will be in process. Find the number of your receipt typed on the upper left corner of the notice. This number will be needed to you when you check your case status. For convenience sign up for getting e-mails with updated information about your case.
In case when USCIS finds that additional documents from you are required for application completing, they will inform you about it in a letter. USCIS will also inform you in the petition for visa is denied or approved. You can wait for this information for long, but it will not affect the case. The priority date and the place of your sibling on a waiting list have been set. It will be the date when USCIS got I-130.
In case when the petition is denied, USCIS always informs the applicant about the reason of this denial. The best what can happen in this case is starting a new process to re-file the I-130 application, doing all possible to rectify the reason why the application was denied. When you do not understand something about the denial or when you are now sure how to re-file the application, hire an attorney.
In case when your application is approved, you will be noticed about it. Your case will go to NVC. Further your sibling will get information from consulate and NVC. When the day of changing the date status from priority to current comes, he/she will be invited for an interview.
Those rare siblings of Americans who live in the USA, and can legally change their status in here, can also file I-485 form together with I-130. However, it can be dome later. Then a sibling of an American will get a call and get the appointment for an intervie