An I-130 Lawyer Helps You Petition For Your Spouse

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Family is forever, goes the saying. No matter how successful or far you may be, you still desire to be with your family. Therefore, if you are a  U.S. citizen or a lawful permanent resident married to a foreign spouse, you must want to bring them to the country.

With these desires in mind, you can make this a reality through a family-based petition. It is a crucial step in sponsoring family members for permanent residency.

Here, you will learn about the Petition for Alien Relative form. Know more about the application process, requirements, and the benefits of having a knowledgeable I-130 lawyer.

How An Immigration Form I-130 Lawyer Can Help You Bring In Your Spouse

Navigating Family Petition With An Experienced I-130 Lawyer

Accomplishing the I-130 form is the first step in obtaining lawful permanent residence or a Green Card for family members living abroad. The petitioner must file the Petition for Alien Relative with the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS).

This form proves a relationship with a foreign relative you wish to bring to the United States. To apply for a petition, you need to understand the requirements.


You must be a U.S. citizen or a lawful permanent resident (LPR) to initiate the petition. As a U.S. citizen, you can file the petition for your spouse, parents, children, including stepchildren or adopted children, and siblings. LPRs can only file for their spouse and unmarried children.

You can petition for your spouse once you receive your Green Card. If your spouse has other family members who can petition for them, they can have multiple pending applications. Having multiple petitions can, at times, be a smart move.

Understanding these requirements is essential when filing a spousal petition. However, many petitioners often wonder whether their income level will impact an approval. Is your income a factor in filing the petition?

Does Income Matter When You File?

When you file a petition for your spouse who lives overseas, your income at the beginning of this petition is irrelevant. Why is that? Because the petitioner just needs to file the form, verifying the authenticity of the marital relationship.

The USCIS wants to ensure that ‌the marriage is not entered solely for immigration purposes. Therefore, your income or financial status does not play a role in the approval or denial of your petition.

However, it does play a significant role in the later stages of the immigration process. Once USCIS approves the petition, beneficiaries will undergo consular processing or adjustment of status for their Visa or Green Card. During this stage, the petitioner’s income becomes crucial in demonstrating their ability to support the beneficiary financially.

The Application Process For Family Petition

If you’re seeking to sponsor a spouse, child, or parent, the application involves multiple steps that require diligent preparation. An immigration attorney can help you avoid pitfalls that could cause lengthy delays or even lead to a denial. Here is a brief overview of the application process.

Gather The Required Documents

Before filing, you must gather the necessary documents to establish the familial relationship. These documents may include birth certificates, marriage certificates, divorce decrees, and other supporting evidence.

Complete The Form

Fill out the Petition for Alien Relative form accurately and provide all the required information. You can file online through the USCIS website or on paper and send it by mail. Ensure that you provide correct and up-to-date information to avoid delays or potential issues with your application. Consult with ‌an immigration lawyer for guidance and advice.

Submit The Petition

Once you have completed the form, submit it along with the required supporting documents to the appropriate USCIS office. Make sure to include the filing fee and any additional fees, if applicable. Keep copies of everything for your records.

Await USCIS Processing

After submitting your petition, the USCIS will review your application, verify the relationship, and conduct background checks. This process may take several months.

Receive Approval Notice

If your petition is approved, you will receive an approval notice from the USCIS. This notice confirms that the relationship has been established, and the beneficiary is eligible for further immigration benefits.

The approval of the petition does not, in itself, grant any immigration benefits or legal status to the beneficiary. Instead, it serves as the first step in the family-based immigration process.

Road To Permanent Residency

The approval of I-130 establishes eligibility for the beneficiary to apply for an immigrant Visa or adjustment of status.

For Beneficiaries Outside The United States

If the beneficiary is outside the United States, the approved form will be forwarded to the National Visa Center (NVC) for consular processing. Consular processing is used to obtain an immigrant Visa for those outside the country who want to become lawful permanent residents.If You Want To Help Your Spouse Stay Lawfully In The U.S. Consult With An Immigration Lawyer

The NVC will then guide the petitioner and beneficiary through further steps of consular processing. It involves submitting additional documentation, paying the required fees, and attending an interview at a U.S. embassy or consulate in their home country. If all requirements are met and the Visa is approved, they can then travel to the U.S. as an immigrant.

For Beneficiaries Already In The United States

In contrast, beneficiaries already present in the United States may be eligible to apply for adjustment of status. This involves filing Form I-485, Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status, with the USCIS. If the USCIS approves the application, they will become permanent residents and receive a physical Green Card as proof of their status.

The road to permanent residency can be tough and exhausting, but it is worth it. Once your beneficiaries are granted LPR status and receive their Green Card, they can enjoy many advantages.

Benefits Of Having A Green Card

There are several benefits for the petitioner and their beneficiaries when they are granted LPR status and receive their Green Card. Here are some of them.

Legal Permanent Residence

The main benefit is that you can finally be with your family and live in the same place without restrictions. It also offers them stability and freedom to live and work in the United States without needing a nonimmigrant Visa.

Employment Opportunities

With a Green Card in hand, beneficiaries gain access to improved economic opportunities. They can accept any suitable job offers or change careers without delay. Over time, permanent residents even have the option to start their businesses or become eligible for specific public benefits programs.

Social Security & Medicare Benefits

As a Lawful Permanent Resident, they also become eligible for Social Security benefits and Medicare coverage upon retirement. This ensures access to essential healthcare services and financial support during their golden years.

Education Benefits

They also have access to public education, including primary, secondary, and higher education institutions, at the same cost as U.S. citizens. LPRs can also apply for federal financial aid, scholarships, and grants to pursue higher education.

Travel Flexibility

A permanent residency status allows for easy and convenient travel in and out of the United States. LPRs can travel abroad temporarily or briefly without jeopardizing their permanent residence status.

Sponsor Family Members

Lastly, they can sponsor certain family members for permanent residency. This facilitates family unity and allows loved ones to join them in the United States.

Successful family-based petitions through routes like the I-130 process allow you to permanently live together in the United States with your loved ones. However, the immigration process can be complex, and each case is unique.

Consulting with an experienced Green Card attorney can provide personalized guidance and advice tailored to your specific circumstances. They can help you navigate the process, address potential challenges, and provide legal strategies to achieve your immigration goals. If you’re in San Antonio, Texas, consider consulting with Lozano Law Firm. They can provide personalized guidance and help strategize a strong family-based petition.


Your income does not matter when filing a petition for your foreign spouse. The Petition for Alien Relative’s main goal is to prove that the marriage is valid and not just for immigration reasons. However, your income does matter at a later point in the process. The petitioner’s ability to financially support the beneficiary during this time is evaluated.

It’s best to get help from an experienced immigration lawyer who can support you throughout the application. With their help, you can understand and improve your chances of successfully petitioning for your loved ones. 

About Alfredo Lozano

alfredo lozano of lozano law firm inAlfredo Lozano is the founder and principal attorney at Lozano Law Firm, an immigration law firm serving the communities of San Antonio, Eagle Pass, Laredo and San Angelo in business and family-based immigration law. Mr. Lozano is a member of the State Bar of Texas, the San Antonio Bar Association, and the American Immigration Lawyers Association.

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