How Long will it take to bring my family to the U.S?

This is the main question that all clients want the answer to as soon as they walk in the door. the only answer that we as lawyers can really give definitively is that it depends. In my first year in Law School one of my professors told my class that “it depends” is the best answer to a lot of legal questions. As a practitioner, his statement rings true. The processing time for one client might be around 6 months while another client might have to wait one year or more for the visa number to come up.
the next question is naturally what does it depend on. When filing for a family members the factors that affect the timing  are

  • Your immigration status
    • If you are a Lawful permanent resident (LPR) it would take longer than if  you were a U.S citizen (USC) and there are certain relatives that a LPR cannot file a petition for.
  • Your relationship with the family member
    • i.e. parent, spouse, the age of your child (if child is over 21, it would take longer), sibling (longest waiting time and can only file if your a USC).
  • Your child’s/family member’s marital status (if married, it would take longer)

The best thing I can tell every client is to give me all the information upfront so that I can consider all the possibilities and be able to give you an educated answer to your question of “how long will it take?”.