U.S. immigration law allows certain aliens who are family members of U.S. citizens and lawful permanent residents to become lawful permanent residents (get a Green Card) based on specific family relationships. If you are the spouse, minor child or parent of a U.S. citizen, please see the Green Card for Immediate Relatives of U.S. Citizen page for information on how to apply for a Green Card.
Other family members eligible to apply for a Green Card are described in the following family “preference immigrant” categories:
- First preference (F1) - unmarried sons and daughters (21 years of age and older) of U.S. citizens;
- Second preference (F2A) - spouses and children (unmarried and under 21 years of age) of lawful permanent residents;
- Second preference (F2B) - unmarried sons and daughters (21 years of age and older) of lawful permanent residents;
- Third preference (F3) - married sons and daughters of U.S. citizens; and
- Fourth preference (F4) - brothers and sisters of U.S. citizens (if the U.S. citizen is 21 years of age and older).
This page provides specific information for aliens in the United States who want to apply for lawful permanent resident status based on a family preference category while in the United States. This is called “adjustment of status.” You should also read theInstructions for Form I-485, Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status (PDF, 539.23 KB) before you apply.
If you are currently outside the United States, see Consular Processing for information about how to apply for a Green Card as a family preference immigrant.