F2a Visas: Spouses And/ Or Children


Legal Permanent Residents may apply for F2A immigrant visas on behalf of their foreign national spouses and/or children by filing a Form I-130Immigrant Petition with USCIS.  While unmarried children under the age of 21 may qualify for derivative immigration benefits on the same I-130 petition that was filed for the spouse, it is highly recommended that separate I-130s be filed for each member of the family, to ensure that the children will maintain their eligibility for immigration benefits in the event that the petitioner naturalizes as a U.S. citizen before the visas are issued.  When the petitioner of an F2A application naturalizes, derivative beneficiaries do not continue to derive immigration benefits, since the IR1 visa class does not allow for the inclusion of derivative beneficiaries.

Note: If the petitioner naturalizes as a U.S. citizen, the visa class will be automatically converted to IR1 for spouses and IR2 for children (provided that each of these children is the principal beneficiary on his or her own I-130 petition) by providing a notarized copy of the petitioner’s naturalization certificate to the National Visa Center.

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