Complex Family Immigration Lawyer

Complex Family Immigration Lawyer Services

At The Law Offices of Daniel Shanfield Immigration Defense PC, we understand that family is the cornerstone of life. Our dedicated team, with over 50 years of combined experience in immigration law, specializes in bringing families together and ensuring their unity in the face of legal challenges.

How a Complex Family Immigration Lawyer Can Help

As a law firm specializing in complex family immigration cases, we understand the nuances and challenges that come with navigating the U.S. immigration system.

Here’s how we can help:

Navigating Complex Immigration Laws

Our team’s deep understanding of immigration law enables us to handle complicated cases involving mixed immigration statuses, previous legal issues, or unique family circumstances. Our immigration lawyers are experienced and ready to help. 

Family Reunification

We specialize in reuniting families, tackling cases involving spousal and fiancé(e) visas, child and adoption-related immigration, and other family-based petitions.

Adjustment of Status and Waivers

We assist in adjusting the status of family members already in the U.S. and navigating the waiver process, which can be critical in overcoming barriers to entry or residency.

Defense Against Removal

If a family member faces the threat of deportation, our experienced family immigration attorneys provide robust defense strategies to protect their rights and keep families together.

Guidance and Personalized Strategy

Every family’s situation is unique. We provide personalized legal strategies tailored to each family’s specific needs and goals, ensuring the highest chance of success.

At The Law Offices of Daniel Shanfield Immigration Defense PC, we are committed to helping families navigate the complexities of immigration law with compassion, expertise, and a proven track record of success.

Our Family Immigration Lawyer Services

Family Immigration Lawyer

Family-based immigrant petitions are a cornerstone of U.S. immigration law, allowing U.S. citizens and lawful permanent residents (LPRs) to sponsor certain family members for immigration to the United States. These petitions fall into two main categories:

Immediate Relative Visas

For close relatives of U.S. citizens, including spouses, unmarried children under 21, and parents. Challenges often include proving the legitimacy of the relationship, especially in cases where documentation is sparse.

Family Preference Visas

For more distant relatives of U.S. citizens and some relatives of lawful permanent residents. The main challenge is the long waiting periods due to annual visa caps and processing delays.

Fiancé(e) Visas (K-1 and K-2 Visas)

For fiancé(e)s of U.S. citizens and their children. Applicants face challenges in proving the relationship’s authenticity and meeting the requirement to marry within 90 days of entering the U.S.

Marriage-Based Visas

For spouses of U.S. citizens and lawful permanent residents. A common challenge is demonstrating the bona fide nature of the marriage, which often requires extensive and detailed documentation.

Adoption and Orphan Visas

For children adopted by U.S. citizens. Challenges include navigating complex international adoption laws and ensuring compliance with the legal requirements of both the U.S. and the foreign country involved.

Widow(er) Visas

For widows or widowers of U.S. citizens. The challenges here involve providing evidence of the marital relationship and managing the application process within the stipulated timeframe following the U.S. citizen spouse’s death.

Each category has its unique processes and obstacles, highlighting the importance of hiring a skilled family immigration lawyer.

Eligibility Requirements for Family-Based Immigration

The eligibility requirements for family-based immigration in the United States include:

1. Sponsorship by a U.S. Citizen or Lawful Permanent Resident

The petitioner must be a U.S. citizen or a Green Card holder.

2. Proof of Relationship

The petitioner must provide evidence of a legitimate family relationship with the beneficiary (e.g., marriage certificate for spouses, birth certificate for children).

3. Financial Support

The petitioner must demonstrate the ability to financially support the family member(s) they are sponsoring, typically through an Affidavit of Support.

4. Admissibility

The beneficiary must be admissible to the U.S., meaning they don’t fall under any grounds of inadmissibility like criminal history or previous immigration violations.

5. Visa Availability

For family preference categories, a visa must be available, as these categories are subject to annual caps.

Each category of family-based immigration has specific additional requirements depending on the relationship and the immigrant’s current status.

How to Apply for Family-Based Immigration

Applying for family-based immigration in the United States involves several key steps:

File a Petition

The U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident must file Form I-130, Petition for Alien Relative, with U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS).

Establish Relationship

Provide evidence to prove the legitimacy of the familial relationship, such as birth certificates, marriage certificates, and other relevant documents.

Wait for Petition Approval

Once USCIS approves the petition and a visa becomes available, the process moves forward.

Apply for Visa or Adjust Status

If the beneficiary is outside the U.S., they will apply for a visa through consular processing. If they are in the U.S., they may apply to adjust their status to a lawful permanent resident using Form I-485.

Attend Interviews and Provide Additional Documentation

Depending on the case, interviews and additional documentation may be required.

Receive Decision

Upon approval, the beneficiary becomes a lawful permanent resident of the U.S. and will receive their Green Card.

Each case varies, and it’s often beneficial to consult a family-based immigration lawyer to navigate this process effectively.

Common Family Immigration Challenges 

Common immigration challenges include:

Lengthy Processing Times

Delays are frequent, often causing uncertainty and stress for applicants.

Complex and Changing Laws

Immigration laws and policies can be complex and subject to change, making compliance challenging.

Documentation and Paperwork

Ensuring accurate and complete documentation is essential but often difficult.

Visa Availability and Quotas

Limited visa numbers, especially in certain categories, can lead to long waits.

Legal Status Issues

Overcoming issues related to illegal presence, unauthorized work, or previous immigration violations can be challenging.

Family Separation

Navigating family-based immigration while dealing with the emotional stress of family separation.

Language Barriers and Cultural Differences

These can complicate understanding and adhering to immigration procedures.

Financial Requirements

Proving financial stability or meeting sponsorship requirements can be difficult for some applicants.

Addressing these challenges often requires expert guidance and meticulous attention to detail.

Why Choose Us

  • Experience Led by a Former Federal Immigration Prosecutor: Our unique perspective enables us to defend clients effectively against immigration challenges.
  • Ethical and Personalized Representation: Each case is treated with the utmost care and tailored to meet individual needs.
  • High Success Rate: Our firm’s commitment to excellence is reflected in our exceptional AVVO rating and A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau.
  • Continuous Support: From the first consultation to case resolution, we are with you every step of the way.

Contact Us Today

Your family’s future in the United States is important. At The Law Offices of Daniel Shanfield Immigration Defense PC, we are not just your lawyers; we are your partners in navigating the path to a secure family life in America.

Contact us today to discuss how we can assist with your family immigration needs.


Who can I sponsor for family-based immigration?

U.S. citizens can sponsor spouses, children, parents, and siblings, while lawful permanent residents can sponsor spouses and unmarried children.

How long does the family immigration process take?

Times vary depending on the category and country of origin, with immediate relative visas generally being quicker than family preference visas.

What is the Affidavit of Support?

It’s a document proving that the immigrant will have adequate financial support and won’t rely on public benefits.

Can I apply for a Green Card for my family member if I’m not a U.S. citizen?

Yes, lawful permanent residents can sponsor certain family members.

What happens if my family-based visa application is denied?

You can typically appeal the decision or reapply, possibly with additional or corrected information.

Is legal representation necessary for family immigration?

While not mandatory, legal representation can be highly beneficial due to the complexity of immigration laws and procedures.