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Following to Join

The spouse and children of a principal applicant are entitled to derive immigration benefits from their principal's approved visa petition and may travel to the United States at a later date. These spouse and children are called following-to-join family members.

Following-to-join applicants may derive immigration benefits only if:
a) The spouse or children were acquired before the principal applicant's admission into the United States; and
b) The principal applicant gained lawful permanent resident (LPR) status or was issued an immigrant visa under the family-preference (F) or employment-based (E) visa categories or was issued a nonimmigrant K or V visa. Foreign nationals who immigrated to the U.S. under an immediate relative (IR) visa category need to file a separate Form I-130 visa petition on behalf of their spouses and children.
c) The principal applicant has not naturalized. Once the principal applicant becomes a U.S. citizen, a separate visa petition would need to be filed on behalf of the spouse and /or children to qualify for immigration benefits again.

These documentations must be presented to establish the principal applicant's immigration status in the United States and their relationship to their principal, including:
• A copy of the child's birth certificate issued by the National Statistics Office
• A copy of the marriage certificate issued by the National Statistics Office
• A copy of the principal alien's registration receipt card or I-551 or a copy of the principal alien's passport pages indicating admission to the U.S. as an immigrant
• If applicable, Form I-824, Application for Action on an Approved Application or Petition

A letter of request must come with the documents clearly indicating the name of the applicant(s) and the applicant(s)' contact address and telephone number.

Accompanying & Following to Join
Accompanying is a type of visa in which family members travel with the principal applicant, (in immigrant visa cases, within six months of issuance of an immigrant visa to the principal applicant).
Following to join is a type of derivative visa status when the family member gets a visa after the principal applicant.

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