What is an IR-2 visa?
The IR-2 visa is a type of immigrant visa issued by the United States to children of U.S. citizens who are under the age of 21 and are seeking to immigrate to the U.S. to be with their citizen parent. The IR-2 visa falls under the family-based immigration category and is specifically designed for children of U.S. citizens.
Here are some key points about the IR-2 visa:
- Eligibility: The IR-2 visa is available to children of U.S. citizens who are under 21 years old and unmarried. The parent-child relationship must be proven through documentation such as birth certificates, adoption decrees, and other legal evidence.
- Petition: The U.S. citizen parent needs to file a Form I-130, Petition for Alien Relative, on behalf of their child. This petition establishes the child’s eligibility for an immigrant visa as the child of a U.S. citizen.
- Priority Date: The Form I-130 petition is assigned a priority date, which is used to determine the child’s place in line for visa processing. The priority date is important because immigrant visa numbers are limited, and the child’s visa cannot be issued until the priority date becomes current.
- Visa Availability: The availability of IR-2 visas depends on the child’s age and the parent’s marital status. Children under 21 years old are generally considered “immediate relatives” and do not face numerical limits on visa numbers. This means that there is no waiting for visa numbers to become available, and the child can proceed to the next steps of the immigration process once the Form I-130 is approved.
- Immigrant Visa Application: Once the Form I-130 is approved, the child can apply for an immigrant visa at a U.S. embassy or consulate in their home country. This involves submitting various forms, supporting documents, and attending an interview.
- Green Card: After entering the U.S. on an IR-2 immigrant visa, the child becomes a permanent resident and receives a green card. This grants them the legal right to live, work, and study in the U.S.
It’s important to note that the specific steps and requirements for the IR-2 visa process may vary depending on individual circumstances and changes in immigration policies. For the most up-to-date and accurate information, it’s recommended to consult the official U.S. government websites or seek guidance from immigration experts or attorneys.
How to apply for an IR-2 visa?
Applying for an IR-2 visa, which is an immigrant visa for children of U.S. citizens under the age of 21, involves a series of steps. Here’s a general overview of the process:
- File Form I-130 (Petition for Alien Relative): The U.S. citizen parent (petitioner) needs to file Form I-130 on behalf of their child (beneficiary). This form establishes the parent-child relationship and serves as the basis for the child’s eligibility for an IR-2 visa. The petitioner should include all required supporting documentation, such as birth certificates, adoption decrees, and evidence of U.S. citizenship.
- Wait for Form I-130 Approval: After submitting Form I-130, the petitioner should wait for USCIS to process and approve the petition. Once approved, USCIS will send a Notice of Approval (Form I-797) to the petitioner.
- Priority Date and Visa Availability: USCIS assigns a priority date to the Form I-130 petition. The priority date is used to determine the beneficiary’s place in line for visa processing. For immediate relatives (such as children under 21 of U.S. citizens), there are usually no numerical limits on visa numbers. Therefore, once the Form I-130 is approved, the visa is typically considered immediately available.
- Submit Visa Application and Supporting Documents: Once the Form I-130 is approved and the visa is available, the beneficiary (child) can begin the visa application process. This involves submitting Form DS-260, Online Immigrant Visa and Alien Registration Application, through the Consular Electronic Application Center (CEAC) website. The beneficiary will need to provide personal information, contact details, and information about the U.S. petitioner.
- Pay Visa Fees: After submitting Form DS-260, the beneficiary will need to pay the required visa processing fee. The specific fee amount and payment instructions will be provided on the CEAC website.
- Attend Medical Examination: The beneficiary will need to undergo a medical examination by a panel physician approved by the U.S. embassy or consulate in their home country. The results of the medical examination will be sent directly to the embassy or consulate.
- Attend Visa Interview: The beneficiary will be scheduled for a visa interview at the U.S. embassy or consulate in their home country. During the interview, they will need to provide necessary documentation, including the Form DS-260 confirmation page, passport, visa application fee receipt, medical examination results, and any additional documents requested by the embassy or consulate.
- Receive Visa and Travel to the U.S.: If the visa is approved, the beneficiary will receive an immigrant visa stamped in their passport. This allows them to travel to the U.S. Once in the U.S., they will become a permanent resident (green card holder).
It’s important to note that the application process and required documentation can vary based on individual circumstances and changes in immigration policies. It’s recommended to consult the official U.S. government websites or seek guidance from immigration experts or attorneys for the most accurate and up-to-date information on applying for an IR-2 visa.
IR-2 checklist of required documents
The specific required documents for an IR-2 visa application can vary depending on the U.S. embassy or consulate where you’re applying, as well as individual circumstances. However, here’s a general checklist of documents you may need to prepare for an IR-2 visa application:
- Form DS-260 Confirmation Page: A printout of the confirmation page from the Online Immigrant Visa and Alien Registration Application (Form DS-260).
- Passport: A valid passport for the beneficiary (child) with a validity that exceeds the expected date of entry into the U.S.
- Passport-Sized Photos: Recent passport-sized color photos of the beneficiary that meet the U.S. visa photo requirements.
- Birth Certificate: An original or certified copy of the beneficiary’s birth certificate, along with a certified English translation if the original is in a foreign language.
- Form I-797 Approval Notice: A copy of the Notice of Approval (Form I-797) for the Form I-130 petition filed by the U.S. citizen parent.
- Evidence of U.S. Citizenship: A copy of the U.S. citizen parent’s proof of U.S. citizenship, such as a U.S. passport, Certificate of Naturalization, or Certificate of Citizenship.
- Affidavit of Support: Form I-864, Affidavit of Support, along with supporting financial documentation from the U.S. citizen parent or joint sponsor, if required.
- Medical Examination Results: The results of the medical examination conducted by an approved panel physician, as well as any required vaccinations.
- Police Certificates: Police certificates or clearances from each country where the beneficiary has resided for six months or more since turning 16 years old.
- Marriage Certificate (if applicable): If the beneficiary is married, provide a marriage certificate and evidence of the legitimacy of the marriage.
- Adoption Documents (if applicable): If the beneficiary was adopted, provide adoption decrees and related documentation.
- Relationship Evidence: Documents demonstrating the parent-child relationship, such as photos, letters, or other evidence of a genuine relationship.
- Visa Application Fee Receipt: Proof of payment of the required visa application fee.
- Court and Police Records: If the beneficiary has ever been arrested or convicted, provide certified copies of court and police records, as well as an explanation.
- Educational Records: Educational records, diplomas, transcripts, and other relevant academic documents for the beneficiary.
- Other Documents: Any additional documents requested by the specific U.S. embassy or consulate where you’re applying.
Please note that the checklist provided here is not exhaustive and may not cover all the specific requirements for your situation. Before submitting your application, it’s recommended to consult the official U.S. embassy or consulate website where you’re applying for the most accurate and up-to-date information on required documents and procedures. Additionally, seeking advice from immigration experts or attorneys can help ensure that you’re well-prepared for the IR-2 visa application process.
IR-2 visa cost
The cost of an IR-2 visa, which is an immigrant visa for children of U.S. citizens under the age of 21, includes several fees and expenses. It’s important to note that these fees can vary based on factors such as the location of the U.S. embassy or consulate where you’re applying and any additional services you might need. Here are some of the typical fees and expenses associated with the IR-2 visa application process:
Form I-130 Filing Fee:
The U.S. citizen parent (petitioner) needs to file Form I-130, Petition for Alien Relative, on behalf of the child. The filing fee for Form I-130 is $535. This fee covers the cost of processing the petition.
Visa Application Fee:
The beneficiary (child) will need to pay a visa application fee. This fee can vary depending on the type of visa and the U.S. embassy or consulate where the application is being processed. As of my last update, the visa application fee for an immigrant visa (including IR-2) was $325.
Medical Examination and Vaccination Fees:
The beneficiary will need to undergo a medical examination by a panel physician approved by the U.S. embassy or consulate. The cost of the medical examination and any required vaccinations can vary by location.
Police Clearance Fees:
If the beneficiary has lived in certain countries for more than six months since the age of 16, they may need to provide police clearance certificates. The cost of obtaining police clearance certificates can vary by country.
The beneficiary will need a valid passport for the visa application. Passport fees vary by country.
Translation and Documentation Fees:
If any documents need to be translated into English or require additional certification, there may be associated fees.
Travel expenses can include transportation to the U.S. embassy or consulate for the visa interview and other related travel costs.
Depending on individual circumstances and specific requirements, there may be other fees associated with the application process.
It’s important to keep in mind that these fees and expenses can change over time, and different U.S. embassies or consulates may have varying fee schedules. Before proceeding with the application process, it’s recommended to check the official U.S. embassy or consulate website where you’re applying for the most up-to-date fee information. Additionally, consulting with immigration experts or attorneys can help ensure that you have a clear understanding of the total costs associated with obtaining an IR-2 visa.