Do you need your parents’ passport to apply for a green card if you’re an unmarried girl? In some cases, the answer will be yes, and in others, it will be no.
This guide will break down the different requirements that are specific to unmarried women applying for their own green cards and will let you know whether or not you need your parents’ passport in order to get approved.
Is it true you need your parents’ passport to apply for a green card as an unmarried girl?
Yes, you do need your parents’ passport if you are unmarried. To apply for a green card based on marriage, your spouse must submit his or her passport, proof of status in U.S., and an Affidavit of Support.
However, if you are applying for permanent residency because you have been approved to receive special immigrant juvenile status (SIJS), no additional evidence of parental relationship is required.
What if you can’t get your parents’ passports in time?
This isn’t an easy situation, and there are no easy answers. One approach might be for you and your parent to go in together—you both apply for your green cards at once.
It might also be possible to petition your parent later on; of course, that depends on how long it takes your parents to get their citizenship (they’ll likely want you to be citizens too).
If you have any questions about applying for a green card as an unmarried girl, give our office a call.
Can I still be eligible without my parents’ passports?
Unfortunately, while unmarried U.S. girls can in some cases apply for green cards independently of their parents, they are still required to provide evidence that they’ve been financially dependent on their parents for at least two years before applying.
If you do not have your parents’ passports and cannot obtain them (because your parents have renounced their U.S. citizenship or live outside of the United States), then you will need to submit additional documentation with your application explaining why you were unable to obtain them. The most common reasons include:
1) your parents no longer live together;
2) one parent has passed away;
3) one parent is missing;
4) one parent is imprisoned;
5) there was abuse or neglect between parents;
6) neither parent is able to be located because they left home without providing any contact information.
What if my parents are no longer alive or present in the US?
If you don’t have any parents, you can still petition for your green card. As long as you can prove that your parentage has been established before your 18th birthday, you will be able to submit a petition. The USCIS states that the child must show proof of all of these facts:
(1) The child was under age 18 when his or her father or mother died.
(2) The child’s father or mother was a U.S. citizen at time of death.
(3) A parent-child relationship existed between citizen and child before parent’s death.
(4) Parent-child relationship continued after citizen parent died before child turned 18 years old.
What if I entered legally using my own documents and now married here?
If you entered legally using your own documents and then married here, you would have proof of legal entry in case Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) ever questions your status.
To obtain proof of legal entry, apply for an I-94 record from DHS’s website. It will confirm that you are indeed in possession of a valid Form I-551, Permanent Resident Card.
Make sure to print out two copies and carry them with you at all times.
This can be useful if ICE or another law enforcement agency ever stops you or asks about your immigration status; it shows that you are not currently violating any laws by being present in the U.S., which is something they must respect.
What should I do before getting married/getting fiance visa then?
If you’re applying for a green card as an unmarried girl, you’ll need to submit some documents that prove that you have been living together with your boyfriend (for example, phone bills or copies of correspondence).
But before submitting those documents, it’s important to make sure they don’t contain anything potentially embarrassing or upsetting. Remember, everything in these records will be available to see by immigration officials.
In general, do you need your parents’ passport to apply for a green card if you are unmarried and under 21 years old? The answer is no, but there are exceptions.
First, let’s talk about what U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) considers acceptable documentation that proves parental relationship and ties of affection for visa petition purposes
- Birth certificate or record filed with a state, county, municipal authority or foreign equivalent.
- Baptismal certificate showing parents’ names (for those born in church).
- Adoption decree showing adoptive parents’ names
- Death certificate of parent
- Marriage certificate of parent
- Divorce decree showing parent’s name
- Medical records showing parent’s name
- School records showing parent’s name
- Affidavit from blood relative (grandparent, aunt, uncle, etc.) with personal knowledge of your relationship with your parents
- Affidavit from person not related but who has lived in your household and can attest to your relationship with parents.