by Blake P. Somers, Lawyer Referral Service Panelist
There are various ways a person can become a permanent resident. For instance, there are a number of “family-based” ways. This process is when a relative files an “immigrant petition” for another relative that ultimately makes them eligible to become a permanent resident. There are several different classes of immigrant petitions. For instance, the most commonly thought of class of petitions are those for spouses of United States citizens or spouses of permanent residents. Citizens of the United States may also file for parents, brothers and sisters, and children. Permanent residents may also file for their family members, but the categories are more limited (for example, permanent residents cannot apply for their parents).