You’re living in the United States, but you weren’t born here. Perhaps you came to the United States for school, for example, or maybe you were offered a job at a company that needed your services. You immigrated and you have now started a life in a new country.
But that doesn’t mean you want to leave everything behind. Your parents are still in your home country, but you would like to bring them to the United States so that they can live closer to you. Maybe you’re thinking about starting your own family, and you want them to have a relationship with any potential grandchildren or offer support. Maybe you just know that they would have a better quality of life in the U.S. Are you able to do anything to help them achieve this goal?
Are you a citizen?
The biggest question to ask is if you are a citizen or a permanent resident. Citizens do have the ability to petition for their parents to be allowed to enter the United States. However, permanent residents who simply have a green card cannot petition for their parents to get a green card.
What this means is that you may want to pursue citizenship if you are simply a permanent resident right now. Once you’ve gone through the naturalization process and established your own citizenship, then you may be able to help your parents get a green card so they can live closer to you. If they would like to pursue citizenship after that, they can, but they may also be able to live in the United States indefinitely as permanent residents.
You can see how important it is to take the steps in the proper order. It’s also wise to know exactly what legal options you have to create the life that you want for yourself and your family.