10 tips to complete the I-130 accurately


Who is the ‘petitioner’?

It is the U.S. person who makes a formal request that the applicant be considered for a family-based green card.


What are ‘other names used’?

They include maiden names, religious names, professional names, or any other names by which the sponsor is known or has been known in the past. They are not the nicknames only used by close family members or friends.


What if the country of birth of the sponsor no longer exist?

The name of the country should be the name that is currently in use for the place where the sponsor was born. For instance, a sponsor who was born in 1980 in Podgorica in the former Yugoslavia would chose Montenegro as country of birth.


What is the sponsor’s mailing address?

This is the address where U.S. government agencies will send correspondence regarding the green card application. U.S. immigration agencies use USPS to deliver the mail (and the actual green card!), so make sure the address you give matches the USPS database.


Number of marriages?

If the sponsor has never been married, you need to specifically state ‘0’ (do not leave blank, or put N/A). Similarly, answer ‘None’ to the applicant’s or sponsor’s other names used, applicant’s family names.


Who are the sponsor’s parents?

They are the sponsor’s biological parents (or adoptive parents if the sponsor was adopted). They are not stepparents, even if the sponsor does currently have a stepfather or stepmother.


Parent’s city and country of residence?

If a sponsor’s parent died, enter ‘Deceased’ in city of residence.


What is the I-94 Arrival-Departure Record Number?

The official record of the movements of applicants in and out of the United States can be obtained online if they were last admitted after May 2013. If the online record cannot be accessed, the I-94 may be obtained by filing Form I-102 (Application for Replacement/Initial Nonimmigrant Arrival-Departure Record), with USCIS.


Applicant’s or sponsor’s employment information?

Just like in the affidavit of support form, ‘self-employed’ is a valid answer, and a self-employment’s address can be a home address.


Will the applicant apply at a USCIS office or at a U.S. consulate?

This is the only answer U.S. immigration agencies will look at to determine whether the applicant is applying for consular processing or adjustment of status. The applicant’s address is not used to make such determination. You cannot request both and must answer only one of these two questions.

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