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What are some of the major changes to family-based immigration in 2013 Immigration Reform, specifically F2B unmarried adult child of LPR, and prospective US citizens parents? We heard a new bill will benefit the unmarried sons and daughters of U.S. citizens under 31 and unmarried adult sons and daughters of lawful permanent residents who are beneficiaries of approved family-based petitions.

They will be eligible for V visas to enable them to live and work in the U.S. while waiting for their priority dates to become current.

WE don't want to get our hopes up -- but we petitioned for our adult child, and was approved with the priority date approx. 8 years from today. Until then, we were advised that our daughter must wait in her home country, separated from her parents (us).

Correction: 2014, as in the current Reform.

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Attorney answers 3


The Comprehensive Immigration Reform bill which was introduced in the Senate in April 2013 would make significant changes in the existing family-based immigration preference system.

The number of family-based preference green cards would fall from 226,000 to 161,000 annually. However, by expanding the immediate relative category, the bill would increase family-based immigration. In addition, all unused family-based numbers from fiscal years 1992 to 2013 would be added to the fiscal year 2015 quota which starts on October 1, 2014.

The worldwide level for family-based immigrant visas would be allocated as follows:

1) Unmarried sons or daughters of U.S. citizens – 35%

2) Married sons or daughters of USCs under 31 years of age at the time of filing – 25%

3) Unmarried sons and daughters of LPRs – 40%

Persons in the 2A preference category (spouses and children of lawful permanent residents) would be added to immediate relative category (joining parents, spouses and children of U.S. citizens) and would not be subject to numerical restrictions. If they entered the U.S. lawfully, they would be permitted to apply for adjustment of status even if they overstayed their temporary status or worked without authorization.

The bill would allow the derivative beneficiaries of immediate relatives to obtain permanent residence along with the principals. Example: Currently, if an adult U.S. citizen sponsors his parents and his 10-year-old sister for green cards, only the parents are considered immediate relatives and may immigrate without numerical limitations. The sister must be petitioned under the 4th preference category and is subject to the numerical restrictions. She will be separated from her parents and will have to wait many years to qualify for a green card. Under the bill, the sister would be considered a derivative beneficiary of her parents and would be able immigrate together with them.

The per-country cap would be raised from 7% to 15%. This would greatly benefit persons born in the Philippines and Mexico who currently are subject to the longest family-based waiting times.

The bill would restrict the filing of new petitions under the 3rd preference category (married sons and daughters of U.S. citizens) so that parents would be limited to sponsoring only their married sons and daughters who are 30 years old or younger on the date that the petition is filed with the USCIS.

The bill would completely eliminate the filing of new petitions under the 4th preference category (brothers and sisters of U.S. citizens).

Since these changes only apply to future petitions, if you are a U.S. citizen, the time to sponsor your married sons and daughters and your brothers and sisters is now before the bill becomes law.

Currently, stepchildren are allowed to be sponsored only if the marriage creating the stepparent relationship occurred before the child’s 18th birthday. The bill would change this to the child’s 21st birthday. Also, the age requirement for an adopted child is raised from 16 to 18.

Children who age-out of derivative beneficiary status after performing the calculation specified in the Child Status Protection Act would retain the priority date of the original petition and would automatically convert to the 2B category as soon as their parents are admitted as permanent residents.

In addition, the bill would allow the following beneficiaries of approved family-based petitions to obtain “V” visas to live and work in the U.S. while waiting for their priority dates to become current:

1) Unmarried adult sons and daughters of U.S. citizens and permanent residents; and

2) Married sons and daughters of U.S. citizens who were 30 years old or less when the petition was submitted.

Mr. Shusterman's (former INS Trial Attorney, 1976-82) response to your question is general in nature, as not all the facts are known to him. You should retain an attorney experienced in immigration law to review all the facts in your case in order to receive advice specific to your case. Mr. Shusterman's statement above does not create an attorney/client relationship.

Alexander Joseph Segal

Alexander Joseph Segal


Completely useless information on the Bill which will never become law.


That Reform will never become law so it makes no sense talking about it.

The information contained in this answer is provided for informational purposes only, and should not be construed as legal advice on any subject matter,not should it be viewed as establishing an attorney client relationship of any kind.


The Immigration Reform bill was passed by the Senate in 2013 but did not go any further, so nothing has changed. It is not possible to predict if and when any immigration reform will pass in 2014 - as things stand right now, your daughter will have to wait until her priority date becomes current.

Disclaimer: The information provided here is generalized and should not be relied upon as legal advice. This communication does not create an attorney-client relationship.

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