“I am originally from Honduras. In November I very happily became a citizen of the U.S. I have two children in Honduras who I sponsored for green cards three years ago, but they are still waiting to be called. I understand that it will be faster for them now that I am a citizen. How can I make this happen?”
Congratulations on your American citizenship!
You are correct in stating that your U.S. citizenship will fast track the permanent residence applications of your children. However, as you don’t provide their ages or marital status it’s difficult to tell you how much quicker they’ll be processed.
Here’s a look at how their petitions will change, based upon their age. If your children are under 21 then their cases will jump from the Family 2A category to that of immediate relative. Candidates for immediate relative visas are eligible for immediate processing (that can mean weeks/months) because these visas can be distributed in unlimited numbers each year, whereas the family preference categories are numerically limited. (Those in the 2A category with a filing date on or before March 22, 2002 are now being processed.)
If your children are over 21 they could be moved from Family 2B to the Family First Preference, which allocates 23,400 green cards on an annual basis. The benefit here is obvious –- applications in the 2B category filed on or before May 15, 1997 are now being processed, while First Preference visas with a filing date of May 1, 2001 or before are now being issued.
The process of upgrading the petitions filed on behalf of your kids is relatively straightforward. You’ll have to write a letter to the National Visa Center requesting the change due to your naturalization.
This letter must contain the names and individual case numbers assigned to your children, and copies of the Notice of Action letters they would have received after the petitions were filed on their behalf. Most important, enclose a copy of your naturalization certificate.
The National Visa Center’s mailing address is 32 Rochester Avenue, Portsmouth, New Hampshire, 03801-2909. For further reference and guidance, you can also call the 800 number operated by the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service, 1-800-375-5283.