Family Petition for Sibling (Brother or Sister)
If the petitioner is a U.S. citizen and at least 21 years old, they are eligible to petition to bring their brother or sister to live and work permanently in the United States.
If the petitioner is a lawful permanent resident, they are not eligible to apply to bring their brother or sister to live and work permanently in the United States.
Depending on the relationship and the country involved, the wait for an available sibling visa number may be several years. You may refer to the Department of State’s Visa Bulletin for current priority dates.
There is a 3-step process for a brother or sister to become a legal immigrant:
- The USCIS must approve an immigrant visa petition that was filed on be brother or sister.
- The State Department visa bulletin must show that a sibling immigrant visa is available to the sibling, based on the date that the immigrant visa application was filed.
- If the brother or sister is outside the United States when an immigrant visa number becomes available, the brother or sister will be notified to go to the local U.S. consulate to complete the processing for an immigrant visa. If the brother or sister is legally inside the U.S. when an immigrant visa number becomes available, he or she may apply to adjust status to that of a lawful permanent resident.
Definition of a Sibling
A sibling is a brother, sister, stepbrother, stepsister, or adopted brother or sister. For the necessary sibling relationship to exist, each person must have been a child of at least one of the same parents. The siblings need not share the same biological parents as long as both became “children” at the appropriate time (before the age of 16 in cases of adoption, and before the age of 18 for stepchildren).