It generally takes added time for a Green Card holder to immigrate a foreign spouse or minor child who is under the age of 21 years. The added time is intended by the U.S. Department of State to help slow down what is referred to as chain migration.
Immediate relatives of U.S. citizens process normally in a matter of months, but those who are not immediate relatives of U.S. citizens must wait an additional period of time, plus the normal processing time for a case. How much time delay depends on the number of cases pending in the system. In the past it was normal for family members of green card holders to process in 3 years or more. However, the number of applications has dropped over the past year or so. In this situation, the DOS has shortened processing time to encourage more people to file cases and fill up the backlog.
Right now is an excellent time for green card holders to file to immigrate spouses (F-2A category) and minor children (F-2B category).
According to Charles (“Charlie”) Oppenheim, Chief of the Visa Control and Reporting Division, U.S. Department of State: “F-2A and F-2B: Last year, the family-based 2B category advanced very quickly because the demand did not initially materialize. The dates have now advanced to the point where demand is materializing. A similar phenomenon is occurring with regard to F-2A. Until demand materializes, we can expect to see continued advancements in this category. As noted previously, the response rate is low in many of the family-based preference categories.”
Let us know if you are a green card holder and want to immigrate a foreign spouse or minor child under 21 years. Case processing is much quicker than normal at present and your family can be together with you in the U.S. quicker than you think.