A visa petition is the first step in applying for a green card to the U. S. immigration authorities. The visa petition works in one of two scenarios; where for example your mother is a U. S citizen or permanent resident or you have been offered a high level job by a U. S. employer; the onus is on either one to start the process of attaining a green card for you by way of a visa petition. This process is started by either your relative or employer filing a form called the visa petition form. The family member or employer becomes the petitioner and you become a beneficiary. The visa petition is proof that your petitioner is interested in helping you immigrate to the U. S. and is also proof that the petitioner is able and has a right to help you to immigrate based on your relationship or other factors.
For example, in the scenario where your mother is interested in helping you immigrate to the U. S. she would need to include a copy of your birth certificate proving that she is indeed your mother and a copy of her green card proving that she is a permanent resident of the U. S.
In the scenario of your employer, they would be need to attach proof that a labor certification was granted. However, the process for an employer visa petition is a long process as the employer must prove that no U. S. workers are qualified, willing and able to take the job and that the company can indeed pay you the wage they promised you by providing proof through tax returns or annual reports. Further, the employer must furnish copies of college degrees in the event the job requires a certain level of education. All this documentation and proof must be forwarded to the U. S. Department of Labor.
Once your visa petition is approved, it serves the purpose of getting you a place on the waiting list; where the application is for a visa category which has a limited number of visas per year.
The date on which the visa petition is filed is an important date and is called the ‘priority date’. The priority date serves as a way to see the progress of your visa application by way of priority dates being attended to for processing. You can personally check the progress through the monthly Visa Bulletin on the State Department’s website.
Immediate relatives, such as parents, spouse, minor or unmarried children of a U. S. citizen, enjoy a shortcut if they live in the U. S. They do not need to worry about the priority date as they have an advantage of a provision made for them which makes the green card process easier. If they qualify for the adjustment of status provision the process allows them to go through the entire green card application process without having to leave the U. S. This saves many months of waiting for the decision from USCIS.
For Ohio immigration seek out a law office near you.