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US Visas


There are a numerous reasons people desire to come to the United States. Every year, a number of visas are provided for people wanting to visit or immigrate to United States. US Visas are divided into two categories, Immigrant Visas and Non-immigrant Visas. An immigrant visa is for individuals who will be travelling to United States with the aim of getting immigration after coming over here. One the other hand, a non-immigrant visa is for individuals who want to enter United States for visiting, studying, or authorized employment.



For a foreign national to apply for an immigrant visa, a US citizen relative or prospective employer. The process of these immigrant visas starts with the US citizen, individual, or a company sponsoring a family member or a future employer. The foreign national applicant, after receiving the sponsorship from the family member or future employer, will start the process at his/her local US consulate. There are several types of immigrant visas:

  • Relative and Family Sponsored Visas
  • Child Adoption Visas
  • Marrying to a Foreign National Visas
  • Diversity Visa Program
  • Employment Based Visas


After getting the immigrant visa from their local consulate, a foreign national can come to United States, where he will begin his/her process of immigration. First, he/she will get a Green Card, and then later on can apply for Citizenship.


Relative and Family Sponsored Visas

These visas are for immigrants seeking visas who have a relative living in the United States already. To petition a relative, an I-130 form must be filled out and sent to the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services. In order to qualify for a family visa, a person must have a U.S. citizen or legal permanent resident relative willing to sponsor them.


Marrying to a Foreign National Visas

If a US citizen or permanent resident marries a foreign national, he or she can come to United States using an immigrant visa. The process of this visa starts with the US citizen or permanent resident filing the initial petition for sponsoring the foreign national. Normally, this petition is filed in the United States, but if the US national/permanent resident is currently visiting the country of residence of the foreign national, he/she can file it at the local US consulate. The second part of this process involves the foreign national filing for the immigrant visa at his/her local US consulate. Once the visa is issued, the foreign national can come to the United States, where he/she can later start the process of immigration.


To petition a spouse or fiancé, a person must fill out the I-130 as well as a K-1, I-129, IRI/CRI, or a K-3 depending on the person’s circumstance. The procedures differ for non-immigrant visas (K-1 and K-3) and immigrant visas, which may take longer.


Child Adoption Visas

For US citizens who want to adopt children from overseas, they can sponsor the foreign national children by filing the forms and documents to USCIS. Once approved by USCIS, the case is assigned to the local US Consulate at the country of residence of the adopted child. The US consulate will start the process of interview and issuing the visa for the adopted child. Once the visa is issued, the adopted child will travel to the US.


For adoption, there are two different forms depending on where the child is being adopted from; the I-600, and the I-800. Certain countries are part of the Hague Convention and others are not. If they are not part of the Convention, they will need to meet the requirements of an ‘orphan’ to qualify for a visa.


Diversity Program

The Diversity Visa Program is the last type of immigration visas. These visas are unique from other immigrant visas because they do not require any employer or relative sponsorship. They are visas allocated for countries where there typically is a small ratio of immigrants to the United States. Visa applicants are drawn similar to a lottery system.


The following countries are applicable for the Diversity Visa Program:

All countries on the continent of Africa and adjacent islands are eligible. All countries in Asia are eligible except China (mainland born), India, Pakistan, Philippines, South Korea, and Vietnam. All countries in Europe are eligible except Great Britain (United Kingdom) and its dependent territories (Northern Ireland is eligible.) The Bahamas is the only eligible country in North America. All countries in the region of Oceania are eligible, including Australia, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea and the countries and islands in the South Pacific. All countries in South America are eligible except Colombia, Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Haiti, Jamaica, and Mexico.


Employment Based Visas

These require an employer to sponsor an employee. There are a limited number of these visas available every year, and there are priority ranks as follows:

  • First Preference includes people with extraordinary abilities, outstanding professors and researchers, and/or multinational managers or executives associated with a branch of a U.S. company.
  • Second Preference are professionals holding advanced degrees, and persons with exceptional abilities (typically a degree of expertise in a field that is higher than average).
  • Third Preference includes skilled workers, professionals, and unskilled workers.
  • Fourth Preference includes “Special Immigrants”, which are government employees, religious ministers, International Organization employees, U.S. army recruits, translators, and employees in specified areas (Afghanistan and Iraq). These immigrants require an I-360 form to petition for visas.
  • Fifth Preference holds 7.1% of employment visa positions. This preference area comprises of immigrant investors who meet a specific monetary and employment rate requirement for their investments into the United States.



Our experienced immigration attorneys have helped clients with the issues involving visas, employment visas, and rejections involving visas. Our attorneys have been helping clients since 2000, for their immigration issues involving visas. Our experienced team of Dallas Immigration Law Attorneys is here to discuss the details of your immigration case and help you get a dedicated legal representation for your matter. Contact us to schedule a consultation appointment with a member of our immigration team by calling 1.866.789.1664, emailing, or filling out the form on top of this page. We do offer convenient installment plans and accept all major credit cards.




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