What is the F2B Visa
This F2B visa provides the opportunity for US residents to reunite with their family living in Canada by bringing them to the US to live alongside them. The F2B Visa is a family preference US visa that is issued exclusively to the unmarried adult children of Lawful Permanent Residents (LPRs), which allows them to enter the US to live, work and study alongside their families.
In order to be eligible for the F2B Visa, the applicant must be over 21 years of age and be able to sufficiently prove that they are the legal child of the green card holder, either by birth or adoption.
Alongside a significant amount of documentation, the most important factor in the F2B Visa application is that you must be able to prove the direct relationship between the US resident and the Canadian applicant. Failure to do so will lead to automatic disqualification for the F2B visa. However, once granted, the F2B visa will allow the adult child to work and study in the US legally and permanently.
Who is eligible for the F2B Visa?
Eligibility requirements will apply to both the US resident and the Canadian applicant, as the US resident will become the visa sponsor on behalf of the F2B Visa applicant. Eligibility requirements for the application will include, but are not limited to, the following:
- The F2B visa sponsor must be a green card holder
- The green cardholder must be living in the United States with a verified American address
- The green cardholder must be the legal parents (whether by birth or adoption) of the applicant who they are petitioning
- The applicant for the F2B Visa must be over the age of 21
- The applicant must be unmarried
- The applicant must be the child of the green card holder
- The applicant must have sufficient documents to prove their relationship to the US sponsor. These can be in the form of a birth certificate or adoption certificate
It should be noted that if the applicant gets married before the petition is approved, they will automatically become ineligible for the F2B visa. They may be in a relationship or engaged to be wed, however. Their spouse does not qualify for an F2B Visa alongside them unless sponsored by their own US resident parents.
How do I apply for an F2B Visa?
Like most visa applications, the F2B visa application process can take quite some time, and requires a lot of documentation and steps. The first step in the application process is for the US sponsor to file a petition on the applicants behalf to United States Citizen and Immigration Services (USCIS).The process may vary depending on your personal circumstances, but the process usually plays out as follows:
Filing the Petition
Filing the petition on behalf of the Canadian applicant is the first step in the F2B visa application process. To do so, the US sponsor files Form I-130, Petition for Alien Relative, to the USCIS. You will be required to pay a fee when submitting this application, and it is important to make sure that you keep a copy of this, as it will be required later on in the process. This petition is then forwarded to the Department of Homeland Security.
Failure to submit the petition properly, or rejection of the petition means you will not be able to proceed with this application, and you will not be eligible for a refund. Both the sponsor and the applicant need to complete the petition separately.
Step 1: Filing the Petition
The US sponsor begins the application process by filing form I-130, Petition for Alien Relative. The sponsor then pays the required fee to the US Department of Homeland Security (DHS). It is important to keep a copy of the paid invoice for these fees, as they will be required as part of the documentation required later on in the process. The petition then goes to the DHS, where the USCIS processes it.
Step 2: Petition is processed
Once a sponsor submits the application form, the USCIS will process the petition, which can take up to several months. The USCIS will determine whether to approve or deny the petition and will subsequently send the US to sponsor notice of their decision. If the petition has been denied, the USCIS will inform you of the reasons for the rejection. Upon approval, however, the USCIS will then send the petition to the National Visa Center (NVC) for further processing.
Step 3: Getting A Case Number
Once they have received the petition from USCIS, the NVC will send the approval documents to the US sponsor and the family members who are applying for the F2B Visa. These documents will include the petition’s case number, applicable fees, payment instructions, and instructions on how to proceed. Once the NVC has finished the visa processing and sent the approval, the applicant may now apply for the F2B visa. However, it is crucial to note that if the quota for the year has been reached, the visa application process will not begin until the following year, as F2B Visas are processed in chronological order. You will be advised if this is the case.
Step 4: Complete Medical Examination and Vaccination
This process is mandatory for all people who are immigrating to the US. The applicants will have a set of documents highlighting what specific check-ups they must complete, and a list of vaccinations that are required. The applicant must complete the examination with a licensed physician, who must sign the documents clearing a good bill of health, and ascertain that the applicant has taken all the required vaccinations.
Step 5: Attend a Visa Interview
The applicants for the F2B Visa must undergo a visa interview at the US embassy or Consulate in Canada. Once the NVC is satisfied with all the received documentation, a visa interview will be scheduled for the applicant. At the interview, the applicant will be sworn in and asked a series of questions concerning their background, nature, relationship with the US sponsor, and any other line of questioning they wish to approach at their discretion.
Step 6: Visa Approval
Once the Embassy or Consulate decides whether or not they will approve the F2B Visa, they will advise the applicants. If denied, you will be provided with a letter that explains the decision, and what steps you are eligible to take next. Upon approval, the F2B passport will get the visa stamps, and the successful applicant will be given a sealed document that they are not permitted to open. Only a US immigration officer is permitted to open these documents as you enter the US at your port of entry.
Fee Payment and Document Submission
The EB4 Visa applicants are required to pay the application fees at the US Embassy or Consulate in Canada. Upon payment completion, they are then required to submit the following documentation:
An affidavit of support. This is a contract stating that the US sponsor agrees to use their financial resources to sponsor their family once they arrive in the US
All requested civil documents. These documents may include (but are not limited to) the following:
– Marriage certificate
– Birth certificate
– Military records
– Court records
– Police certificates from all countries previously lived in
All applicable application forms may include (but are not limited to) the following:
– Form DS-260, inclusive of the NVC’s assigned case number to your personal application
– Form DS-261, which may not be required if you have utilized the help of an immigration lawyer
Necessary Documents for an F2B Visa
Due to the yearly cut-offs for F2B Visas, it is advisable to start the application process as early as possible. Most importantly, ensure you have all the relevant documents compiled before even beginning the F2B visa application process, as incorrect documents can lead to a rejected application.
In addition to the medical documents and application forms, an applicant must also send the NVC supporting documents proving they qualify for the F2B visa. These supporting documents may include the following:
- Birth certificate or adoption papers
- A passport that must be valid for six months after your planned entry to the US
- Two photographs that meet the US photo standards
- Military certificate (if relevant)
- Divorce certificate (if relevant)
- Death certificate (if applicable)
- Criminal or court records and police certificate
- Medical examination and vaccination documents
- Form DS-260 confirmation page
- A signed Form I-864 (This is an affidavit signed by the parent who is agreeing to take care of the applicant upon arrival in the country)
- All original documents must be submitted in English, or otherwise transcribed
How Total Law can help with your visa application
Hiring the services of specialized immigration lawyers when it comes to moving to the US from Canada (even temporarily) has the potential to save you a lot of time and money. Understanding all the ins and outs of US immigration law can be a challenge, and can lead to delays or rejection of your visa application. Total Law immigration lawyers can ensure your visa petition and application are watertight and contain everything you need to maximize your chances of success.
The team at Total Law understands that there is much at stake with an F2B visa application, and your future and livelihood may depend on an approved application. We will work with you at every stage of the process. Regardless of the type of visa you select for your circumstances, the best step is to get in touch with the team at Total Law, so you know that you are guaranteed the right path, and stand for a much higher success rate for your immigration application. You can contact us seven days a week, either on the phone or by using the online chat function to speak with one of our client care agents.
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The entire application process will require fees at different stages, which are non-refundable if the application is rejected, and which must be paid for to process the petition. All fees may vary, and are set by the Department of Homeland Security, USCIS, and the US Embassy or Consulate in Canada. A rough breakdown of the required fees is as follows :
- Form I-130 filing fee – Usually $535
- Form DS-260 processing fee- Variable costs
- The sponsor may need to pay for the affidavit of support, – Usually $120
- Vaccination and medical examination fees – Variable costs
- USCIS immigrant fees, which must be paid upon receiving the visa and before traveling to the US – Variable costs
- Fees for obtaining and translating all supporting documents – Variable costs
- Moving and transport fees – Variable costs
The F2B is a family preference visa for the unmarried adult children of Lawful Permanent Residents. The F2A visa is also a family preference visa but this is for the spouses and unmarried children (under the age of 21) of Lawful permanent residents.
There is no set processing time for the F2B Visa making it difficult to estimate how long the application process will take. Some applicants wait 1 year whilst others end up waiting 2 years or more.