How to Fill Form I-130 and I-130A – Complete Step by Step guide with examples and Attorney commentary

As with the N-400 it seems that despite USCIS’s best efforts form I-130 also got longer, more expensive and more complicated. One positive change with the new I-130 form is that separate G-325 Forms are no longer necessary. The new I-130 From now includes all necessary background question previously provided separately on form G-325. Accuracy and completeness of USCIS Form I-130 are critical for a smooth approval process. Most of the questions on the form are very straightforward and self-explanatory, but some questions require careful attention. It is important to provide truthful answers on form I-130 to avoid any legal penalties or denial for egregious false statement or misrepresentations. In addition to truthfulness, consistency with all previously filed immigration forms is extremely important.

In the following pages, you will find images of various sections followed by explanations and step by step instructions for all the questions. For the sake of clarity and convenience I focus only on the questions where issues and confusion most often arise.

NOTE: I filled out some sections of the form as an example. The information is fictitious, do not copy it or use it.

Here are some recommendations for completing the application:

  1. Make sure you download the latest form dated 02/27/17 (see lower left corner) https://www.uscis.gov/I-130
  1. I recommend typing in the answers on the form using Adobe Acrobat Reader. A free application that the form was designed and tested for. Other PDF applications may not work properly.
  1. I recommend completing this form on a computer so the data you enter will be captured and saved. USCIS forms are scanned and filling them on a computer helps avoid clerical errors.

PART 1. Relationship.

Prior to filling out the form, the petitioner must confirm that he qualifies to file an I-130 on behalf of the beneficiary based on the familial relationship.

Eligibility and applicable backlogs for family-based immigrant visas are determined by the type of relationship, the status of the petitioner (U.S.citizen or permanent resident), and the country of which the alien relative is a native. Adoptive relationships are governed by special rules. “Child” in this form means son or daughter, not just children under age 21.

Questions 2–3 — Adoption

I-130 petition for a relationship based on adoption must include a copy of the adoption decree showing that the adoption occurred before the child’s 16th birthday. There are several more complex rules related to petitioning for adoptive children and their siblings. Please consult an immigration attorney prior to petitioning for adopted children.

If you want to avoid rejections because of mistakes, errors, inconsistencies and omissions, or simply want the peace of mind that an attorney reviewed your forms and documents then my $249  Application and Forms review service is perfect for you, no matter where you are. Feel free to email or call me at 212-202-0489 for a no obligations free consultation.”  DAVID KOHINA, ESQ.

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