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F2A Visa Guide for Dependents of US Green Card Holders

If your parents, spouse or family relatives are permanent resident in US, you can get F2A Visa to join them. The F2A visa is a Family Based Green Card designed for spouses and unmarried children of U.S. permanent residents and Green cardholders. The F2A along with the F2B Visa falls under the second category of the “preference relative Green Cards”.

So you can get this Visa as long as you have a family relationship with any permanent resident or green card holder in the United States of America.

Therefore, this article will explain to you the processes to go in order to apply for this Visa. Also you will know the requirements, cost and other necessary information about this F2A Visa.

Meaning of F2A Visa

The F2A Visa is a US immigrant visa for spouses or minor children of Green Card holders. This visa is designed to allow US Lawful Permanent Residents (LPRs) to bring these certain family members to the US permanently.

This Visa only allow a limited number of people to US since it for only the immediate family of a green card holder in US, the demand for this Visa is high. So waiting time are also long. Just that after obtaining them, the family members of the LPRs will become permanent residents of the US and will be allowed to live in the US, work and study as well.

Criteria to Obtain the F2A Visa

You can only get this Visa when you fulfill certain criteria or meet these conditions below:

  • You are a child under 21 years old.
  • The children must be unmarried.
  • Be able to prove your relationship with the sponsor in the USA.

Apart from the requirements of eligibility for the family members who will receive the F2A visa, there are also requirements for the Lawful Permanent Resident who is petitioning for their family members, such as:

  • The LPR must be at least 18 years old so that they can sign various documents and consent to conditions
  • And the LPR must be living in the US and have a registered address with the authorities that is within the US.

How to Apply for F2A Visa

Application for F2A Visa is into two pards. And you are going to meet these parts to ensure a complete application process. The two parts are:

First Application Part for F2A Visa

  1. The US Lawful Permanent Resident petitions for their spouse or minor children to US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS)
    When the petition is approved, the spouse or child must apply to a US Embassy or Consulate in their home country
  2. The application must begin in the US through the petition and by the LPR. If the spouse or child tries to apply for their F2A visa without an approved petition, they will not be taken into consideration.
    Filing the Petition
  3. The US LPR must file Form I-130, Petition for Alien Relative to USCIS. The petition goes to the Department of Homeland Security as part of USCIS. There is a fee that the LPR must pay and it is set by USCIS.
  4. The petition is then processed by USCIS and an answer on approval or denial is then sent to the petitioner. If the petition is denied, there will be a reason as to why it was denied so that the LPR can then adjust any problems and file again. If the petition is approved, the documents will then be sent to the National Visa Center (NVC) for further processing.
  5. The NVC will send the approval documents to the petitioner and the applicant (spouse or child) with a case and an invoice identification number, as well as for instructions on what to do next. The documents will also contain all the information about what fees to pay and how to pay them.

Due to certain limitations with the F2A Visa application. The applicant will not be able to apply from their home countries if the date is not current. NVC takes into account the number of petitions for each year and if your petition exceeds the limit of up to 80,000 visas, then your application will be processed next year.

Second Application Part for F2A Visa

Once your date is current, then the NVC will instruct you to begin the application process for the F2A visa. The spouse or child must apply for the visa through a US Embassy or Consulate in their home country. The petitioner does not have to file documents to USCIS for this part of the application process as it is already done. Rather you do the following things below.

  1. File Form DS-260
  2. Complete medical examination and vaccination.
  3. Compile the F2A visa documents file
  4. Attend interview

#1. File Form DS-260

Form DS-260, Immigrant Visa Electronic Application is the form that all applicants for immigrant visas must submit. It is done online and it will inquire about your personal and background information, as well as the reasons why you are immigrating to the US. It will also ask you to write your NVC case number and invoice ID number. You must fill in the appropriate sections and then submit them. After submission, you will receive a confirmation number page which you must submit to NVC as part of your documents file.

#2. Complete medical examination and vaccination

Medical examination and vaccinations are mandatory for all those immigrating to the US. You will have a set of documents about what check-ups you must complete and a list of the vaccinations. You must complete your examination with a licensed doctor who will sign your documents and state that you have taken the necessary vaccinations.

#3. Compile the F2A Visa Documents File

Your documents file must contain all the necessary documentation which supports your case. You must convince the NVC and US Embassy or Consulate that you fulfill all the requirements and are eligible to get the F2A Visa.

Documents  F2A Visa File

  • Your valid passport for more than 6 months after your planned entry into the US.
  • A signed Form I-864, Affidavit of Support from the US petitioner or LPR (applicant’s spouse or parent).
  • Medical examination and vaccination documents.
  • If you are the spouse of the LPR, you must bring your marriage certificate.
  • Two photographs according to the US Visa Photo Requirements
  • If you are the child of the LPR, you must bring your birth certificate or adoption certificate.
  • Court and criminal records and/or police certificate.
  • If you have been previously married, you must bring divorce or certificates of death to prove the marriage was officially terminated.
  • Form DS-260 confirmation page.
  • If you served in the military, you must bring your military records.

#4. Attend interview

When NVC processes your documents and makes sure that you fulfill all the requirements, they will schedule your visa interview. The interview will be done at the US Embassy or Consulate where you are applying. The interviewer will ask questions about your background and then determine whether you will get the immigrant F2A visa or not.
Receive NVC packet and travel to the US

If the US Embassy approves your visa, then you are on your way to going to the US permanently. When they issue a visa on your passport, the Embassy will also give you a packet of documents that are sealed. You cannot open this package under any circumstances. You will need to take it with you when you travel to the US and an immigration official will open it. So this requirements are what you need to successfully get US F2A Visa.


How Much Does the F2A Visa Cost?

There are various fees that the petitioner and the applicant must pay throughout the application process for the F2A visa. The amounts vary and are set by USCIS, the Department of Homeland Security, and the individual US Embassy or Consulate where you are applying. The main categories of fees that must be paid are as follows:

  • Form I-130 filing fee.
  • Processing fee for the Form DS-260
  • Medical examination and vaccination fees.
  • Fees to get and translate all the supporting documents.
  • USCIS Immigrant Fee which you must pay after you receive your visa and before you travel to the US. USCIS will not issue you a Green Card without you paying this fee.

What Is the F2A Visa Processing Time?

The processing time for the F2A visa varies. Your date must become current for you to start the application procedure after your petition is approved. The NVC processes visas in chronological order, so it depends on how many applications were before you. This means that it usually takes a year or more for your date to become current and thus the processing time is quite long.

Do I Get Access to American Healthcare With an F2A Visa?

Yes, you will have access to healthcare in the United States as an F2A visa holder, however, the costs of getting medical treatment in the US are one of the highest in the world.

The treatment of a broken leg or broken arm will cost you $2,500, while staying at a US hospital may cost over $10,000, on average. You should pick a health insurance plan for F2A visa holders that fits you best, which overall is also affordable and covers your needs.

What if the Petitioning LPR got a US Citizenship While the F2A Visa is Processing?

Since the F2A processing time is quite long, the LPR in the meantime might get US citizenship. This means that the spouse and children qualify for a different type of visa, which is the Immediate Relative (IR) visa. This visa does not have a cap so the processing is much faster.

The petitioner will then have a chance to file other petitions to process the visa.

How much is an F2A visa?

USD 325. You need to pay the fee for the application process, which costs USD 325. Also, you will need to add a USD 120 fee for the Affidavit of Support, an essential document during the process.

What does F2A current mean?

F2A: Spouses and unmarried minor children (under age 21) of green cardholders. If you are a green card holder who has applied for a green card for your spouse, this is the category you’ll need to watch when you check the visa bulletin.

What category is F2A?

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.


We hope you have been able to know how to apply for F2A Visa and its requirements and steps. Therefore you can proceed with your application. Apart from this Visa, there are other US visas like F2 Visa, L1 Visa, H1B Visa etc you check in this website. So always visit us at workstudyvisa.come for more information.

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