Whenever immigration laws or issues come up within the U.S government, keeping families together is a priority. Children of U.S citizens or permanent residents, born outside the U.S, are because of this consideration also eligible for green cards so as to enable them join the rest of their family members in the U.S. This chapter addresses only children whose parents have already immigrated to the United States. The F-1 and F-3 Green Cards are family based, first and third preference visas that provide lawful permanent residence to adult and married children of U.S. citizens. There is a limit to the number of visas available in these categories each year, so there is usually a waiting period before an immigrant visa number becomes available.
Immediate family members, such as spouses, parents and unmarried children under 21 years of age, of U.S. citizens may be eligible for an I R Green Card which is unlimited and no waiting period applies.
F-1 and F-3 Visa Entitlements
The F-1 and F-3 Green Cards entitle adult and married (any age) children of U.S. citizens to reunite with their family and become lawful permanent residents in the U.S. In addition, an F-1 Green Card holder’s unmarried children (under the age of 21) and an F-3 Green Card holder’s spouse and unmarried children (under the age of 21) may be entitled to accompany or join them in the U.S. permanently.
U.S. permanent residents are entitled to attend any public or private school in the U.S., work in the U.S. without a visa or employment authorization document, travel outside the U.S. with few limitations, sponsor close relatives for U.S. permanent residence and apply for U.S. citizenship when eligible to do so.
F-1 and F-3 Visa Requirements
To qualify for an F-1 Green Card, the applicant must be the child of a U.S. Citizen, be unmarried and be at least 21 years of age.
To qualify for an F-3 Green Card, the applicant must be the child of a U.S. Citizen and married.
U.S. Green Card applicants will also need to meet health and character requirements.