A person who is or has obtained U.S. citizenship has the power to take their siblings and help them immigrate to the U.S. This is an immigration perk that any U.S. citizen with foreign siblings can avail of, but there are requisites and proper procedures to follow.

Who Can Be a Sponsor?

The first question to ask is who is eligible to become a sponsor. Only citizens of the United States can become sponsors for their family members and help them immigrate to the U.S. Aside from the citizenship requirement, immigration will also take a look at income factors and financial stability.

How to Sponsor Siblings to Immigrate to the U.S.

The process of sponsoring a sibling involves three steps: filing an I-130 petition, submitting the forms and documents, and attending the immigration interview.

I-130 Petition

The first step is filing an I-130 petition to immigration authorities to prove that the U.S. citizen is in fact related to the people seeking to immigrate to the U.S. The sponsor will need to show that they are actually siblings through birth certificates and possibly the marriage certificates of their parents.

Forms and Documents

Upon submitting the I-130 petition, it can take a while for immigration to adjudicate. But once the I-130 petition is approved, the sponsor should watch The Visa Bulletin and wait for the date they become current and are able to move on with the rest of their immigration case.

When the petition is approved, the sponsor and their siblings must then submit the required forms to the National Visa Center.

Immigration Interview

Upon submission of complete and correct forms and documents, the family members seeking to migrate to the U.S. will be invited to attend an immigration interview. Because they are overseas, the interview will be conducted at a U.S. embassy in their country of residence.

How Long Will the Process Take?

One important thing to note about sponsoring siblings is the duration of the entire process. It can take a long time for immigration to adjudicate the petition, with processing times currently at about 15 years, according to the F4 category for siblings in The Visa Bulletin. For some countries of origin, the process can take even longer.

The bottom line is that U.S. citizens can sponsor their siblings to immigrate to the U.S. But the process can take years to complete. Hence, they need to be ready to wait before being able to adopt their siblings to live in the United States.