The V Visa And the Family Green Card Problem

The V visa, also known as the family visa, exists in order to allow Green card holders to be reunited with their families in the United States. However, applications for the V visa are no longer frequent, since the program was allowed to lapse after 2000. This means that applicants who received green cards after 2000 may no longer qualify for a family visa.

The V visa was designed to fix a fundamental flaw which was keeping families apart. United States citizens can usually secure non-immigrant visas, or green cards, or other forms of immigrant status for their immediate relatives. In fact, US citizens can get a family green card for immediate relatives with relative ease by sponsoring these relatives. This allows the families of US citizens to live and work permanently in the States and allows relatives to join their US relatives in the United States.

Similarly, many non-immigrant visa holders in the United States are allowed to apply for dependent visas, which allow foreign nationals entering the United States on a legitimate visa to bring in their spouses and children on dependent visas. Dependant visas allow souses and children to travel with non-immigrant visa holders to the US. Most of these visas do not permit dependants to work in the US, but they do ensure that families can be together.

It is only green card holders in the United States who sometimes must wait long periods of time before being reunited with their families. Since the American government is committed to not separating families, the V visa application process was designed to keep families from being separated. However, since the legislation has lapsed, there are currently no systems in place for families to be reunited quickly and effectively in cases where one family member is in the US with a green card.

Many other countries do have systems for ensuring that families are not separated. For example, some countries expedite family related petitions for immigration and visas. Legislators have tried to install a new type of family visa for green card holders in the United States. Only time will tell whether and a new family visa system will be in place to assist families of green card holders wishing to enter the United States. In the meantime, if you have a green card and wish to sponsor your family for a family green card or visa, it is best to speak with a US immigration attorney about your options to ensure a speedy reunion.