Requirements for filing form I-130

Knowing the requirements for filing form I-130 is extremely important. This way your petition will have a higher chance of being approved by the USCIS. The best possible way to avoid an I-130 form denial is by preparing an accurate and complete petition.

What are the requirements for filing form I-130? 

In order to help you get everything right in your petition for alien relative, we'll go through every step you need to comply with its requirements.

1- Meet the eligibility criteria

You may file the I-130 form if you are a lawful permanent resident (green card holder) or a citizen of the United States who’s petitioning for an alien relative such as your spouse, child/children, parents, or siblings.

I-130 form is basically a petition by a current citizen or permanent resident of the United States to sponsor the green card petition of a family member (alien/foreign relative) that they want to help immigrate to the United States by establishing their relationship and the intention to assist them.

Complete this free test to find out if you can file your petition for alien relative

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2- File separate petitions for each family member

USCIS has determined among the form I-130 form filing requirements that every United States citizen as well as lawful permanent resident who is petitioning for more than one family member must file a separate petition for each eligible relative. 

If you’re a U.S. citizen or a lawful permanent resident, you may file Form I-130 for:

  • Your spouse
  • Your children
  • Your parents
  • Your siblings
    petition-for-family-member

3- Gather all the necessary evidence

At the time of filing form I-130 both the petitioner and the beneficiary have to submit a detailed list of documents required by USCIS.

You can use our list of all the Form I-130 supporting documents to prove your family relationship for each family member, or continue reading to get a broad idea.

If you are the petitioner

You must file certain paperwork to show that you are qualified to file I-130 form and also as proof of your legal status in the United States.

If you were born in the United States, you should present a copy of your birth certificate, if you are a lawful permanent resident you should present a copy of your naturalization or citizenship.

You must also submit other evidence such as a copy of your unexpired United States passport and a front and back copy of your permanent resident card. 

If you are the beneficiary

You have to present a range of paperwork that is also required. Read the list below:

  • Child: Birth certificate (a copy)
  • Sibling: Birth certificate of both of you (a copy)
  • Parent: Birth certificate (a copy)

When requesting for your spouse

The requirements are a little different and more extensive. In these cases, USCIS requires for more specific evidence documents to establish your relationship with the beneficiary. 

  • A copy of your marriage certificate 
  • If you or your spouse have had a prior divorce you need to present your divorce decree.
  • Documentation that shows joint ownership of properties. 
  • Joint residence support such as documents that show you and your spouse live at the same address.
  • Joint bank account documentation such as evidence showing that you and your spouse have combined your financial resources.
  • Birth certificates of children born from the marriage.
  • Affidavits of support by people who can attest to the bona fides of the marriage.
  • Recent passport-style photos of both, petitioner and beneficiary. 
  • Any other relevant documentation to establish that there is an ongoing marital union

If this is your case, you might find useful information on how to prepare for the I-130 interview.

We know you might still have some doubts and perhaps would like to know in a faster way if you're ready to file your petition. You can check that with this quick survey: 

selfdiagnosis-i-130 

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