Reuniting Families: Family Immigration

When our founding attorney, Jagdish M. Vachhani, and his family immigrated to the U.S. in 1974, they faced many hurdles from a complex immigration system. Mr. Vachhani's experience led him to found the Law Office of Vachhani & Associates in Artesia, California. He wanted to make the process easier for immigrant families around the world.

Today, his daughter, lawyer Sungina J. Vachhani, carries on his legacy. Along with the rest of our experienced legal team, she has helped countless families achieve their American dream.

Helping You Obtain A Visa

We help reunite families in the U.S. by applying for immigrant visas. If you have a family member in the U.S. or would like to sponsor a foreign relative's immigration, your relationship can make all the difference in how quickly you can immigrate.

Immediate relatives of U.S. citizens — including spouses, parents of U.S. citizens over 21 years old, unmarried children under 21 years old and certain widows — do not have to wait until their number is called. Other categories have a yearly quota (only a certain number of people may immigrate each year), including:

  • First preference: U.S. citizens' children who are at least 21 years old and their minor children
  • Second preference: U.S. permanent residents' spouses, minor children and unmarried children who are at least 21 years old
  • Third preference: U.S. citizens' married children who are at least 21 years old
  • Fourth preference: Siblings of U.S. citizens who are at least 21 years old

Speak with us to learn about the quotas and how they will affect your or your relative's immigration.

Family Immigration FAQs

Here are some questions that clients often ask us about family-based immigration:

Can I sponsor my same-sex spouse's immigration to the United States?

Yes. Since DOMA has been repealed, same-sex marriage immigration is possible. There are a few things to keep in mind: First, your marriage must have been legal in the state (or country) where it was performed. If you were married in a state that allows same-sex marriage and currently live in a state that does not, you are still eligible to apply for immigration benefits. Second, couples in civil unions and domestic partners are not considered spouses under U.S. immigration law.

I have a criminal record. Can I still get a green card?

Whether you are eligible for a green card depends on the nature of your crime and the number of times you have been arrested. This is a complicated area of law with many variables that we can discuss during our initial consultation.

What is the diversity lottery?

The diversity lottery allows a certain number of people to immigrate to the U.S. from countries that have traditionally low U.S. immigration rates. If you do not have an immediate family member in the United States, you may be able to immigrate to the U.S. through the diversity lottery program, if you qualify.

How much time do I have to wait before I apply for citizenship?

You must typically wait five years to apply for U.S. citizenship after receiving your green card. Exceptions include spouses of U.S. citizens, who can apply after three years, and asylees, who can apply four years after receiving a green card.

How can I petition for my fiancé(e) to come to the U.S.?

There are two ways that you can bring your fiancé(e) to the U.S. First, you can apply for a fiancé(e) visa (K visa), which allows your fiancé(e) to enter the U.S. for 90 days in order to marry you. The second option is to marry overseas and file a petition for your spouse.

Discuss Your Case With Us

For more than 30 years, our law firm has helped many immigrants realize their dreams and has reunited countless families. Contact us online or call 562-888-5094 to set up a consultation to discuss your options.

We speak English, Mandarin, Hindi and Gujarati.