The prospect of reuniting with a loved one is a powerful motivator for many immigrants in the United States. If you’re working in the USA and looking to sponsor your spouse to join you, understanding the time requirements is essential. In this article, we will explore immigration sponsorship, and delve into the duration you generally need to work in the USA before you can sponsor your spouse.

Immigration Sponsorship through Affidavit of Support

As a U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident (green card holder), you have the ability to sponsor certain family members, including your spouse, for a green card, which grants them legal permanent residency in the United States. This sponsorship process is typically initiated through the Form I-130 Petition for Alien Relative. You will also have to file a Form I-864 Affidavit of Support.

U.S. Citizenship vs. Green Card Holder

The duration you need to work in the USA before sponsoring your spouse varies depending on your immigration status and employment history:

U.S. Citizens

If you are a U.S. citizen, you can sponsor your spouse immediately. There is no specific work duration requirement. However, you must meet income and financial criteria to prove your ability to support your spouse.

Green Card Holders

As a green card holder, you can also sponsor your spouse. The key difference is that there may be a waiting period.

Financial Requirements

In both cases, whether you are a U.S. citizen or a green card holder, you will need to meet specific financial criteria to sponsor your spouse. This includes demonstrating that your income is sufficient to support your spouse at 125% of the federal poverty guidelines. If your income does not meet this threshold, you may need a joint sponsor who meets the financial requirements.

Consult with an Immigration Attorney

Sponsoring your spouse for a green card is a complex process, and the timing can vary depending on numerous factors, including visa availability, country of origin, and any potential changes in immigration laws or policies. For precise guidance tailored to your situation, it is advisable to consult with an experienced immigration attorney. They can assess your specific case, provide insights into the process, and offer professional assistance to ensure the smoothest and fastest reunification with your spouse.

Reuniting with your spouse in the United States is a deeply meaningful journey, and understanding the timing and requirements is essential. Whether you are a U.S. citizen prepared to sponsor your spouse immediately or a green card holder navigating waiting periods, the guidance of an experienced immigration attorney can make all the difference. At Whitaker Legal, we specialize in family reunification and immigration law, providing expert assistance to couples seeking to be together once more. Contact us today for a personalized assessment of your case, tailored advice, and a clear path to bringing your loved one to the USA. Your journey to reunification starts with us, and we are here to support you every step of the way.

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