Form I-130A, Supplemental Information for Spouse Beneficiary, is an immigration form mandated by the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services. The U.S. government agency uses this form to gather more information about applicants seeking to become marriage-based green card holders.
The USCIS requires that sponsors of the applicant, U.S. citizens or lawful permanent residents, include this form with the initial I-130 petition. This form is a replacement of the G-235, which requires that both the sponsor and alien spouse fill out and submit it.
As with other forms and visa applications for U.S. immigrants, there are guidelines and rules to filling out Form I-130A. While some of these rules can be accessible on government-approved websites and others with the use of any other automated technology.
In this article, we will explain the purpose of the Form I-130A and outline the instructions for filling it out. We will also answer other frequently asked questions concerning filling out Form I-130A to eliminate as many misconceptions as possible. We recommend hiring an immigration attorney from a reputable law firm to guide you through.
What Is the Purpose of Form I-130A?
The USCIS uses the Form I-130A, formally called Supplemental Information for Spouse Beneficiary, to gather additional background biographical information about the alien spouse. More specifically, the information gathered covers details about their parents and their residential and employment history for the past five years.
The alien spouse will fill it out and file it with the family sponsorship form, I-130, Petition for Alien Relative. Form I-130A acts as a supplement for the initial I-130; it is available for free download on the official USCIS website.
Who Fills Out Form I-130A?
The USCIS obligates the alien spouse seeking a marriage-based green card to fill out the Form I-130A. They will include it with their family sponsorship form, I-130; however, they only need to sign if they live in the U.S. If the alien spouse lives abroad, they will still fill out the form, but they don’t need to sign it.
That is because it is the petitioning or sponsoring spouse that will send the form to the USCIS. Meanwhile, if the beneficiary isn’t confident completing the form, they can have an immigration lawyer fill it out on their behalf.
What Is the Difference between Forms I-130 and I-130A?
Form I-130 and I-130A serve different purposes in the immigration process where the latter acts as supplement for the former. The USCIS uses Form I-130 to establish a U.S. citizen or LPR spouse’s relationship with their eligible relative (spouse).
That is, you will use the Form I-130 to prove that you are truly married to the person you are sponsoring. On the other hand, the USCIS uses the Form I-130A to gather information that establishes this spousal relationship.
The immigrant spouse is normally required to fill out, sign, and file both forms. However, if they aren’t resident in the U.S. their citizen spouse or an immigration lawyer can do it on their behalf.
How Do You Complete Form I-130A?
First download the form (for free)on the USCIS website; then, fill it out by typing or writing legibly with black ink. Avoid putting false information on the form because it will result in your immigration application getting denied.
When filling out the form, refer to the immigrant applicant as “spouse beneficiary,” and type “N/A” or “none” for questions that don’t apply to you. The form runs in two columns and, unlike I-130, information requested is about the immigrant alone.
How Many Sections Are in the Form I-130A?
There are seven parts in the form, each part requesting information on different areas of an immigrant’s life. Part 1 requests information about you, including your alien registration number, also known as A-Number, and USCIS online account number if any.
Part one also requests the spouse beneficiary’s current address history and information about his or her parents. Part 2 is information about the immigrant spouse’s employment in the United States.
Part 3 is about your employment outside the U.S. and part four is about the spouse beneficiary’s statement, contact information, certificates, and signature.
Five is about the interpreter’s contact information certification and signature, and six is about the person preparing the form if not the beneficiary. The last part requests general additional information; you can use this part to complete answers on the other parts.
What Supporting Documents Are Required with the Form I-130A?
You are required to submit the Form I-130A along with certain supporting documents to prove your spousal relationship. These include:
- Your marriage certificate (a copy, not the original),
- If previously divorced, you will provide evidence that you and your spouse terminated the previous marriage,
- Proof of combined resources, that you live in the same address, and (or) of joint property ownership,
- Your children’s (mutual) birth certificates,
- Affidavits of friends or family attesting to the validity of your marriage, including their names, addresses, and date and place of birth.
Worthy of mention is the need to have pre-recorded messages with your spouse to prove that it is a valid and subsisting marriage. Other documents you may need include a birth certificate of yourself, spouse, and other family members who are in paid employment or are self-employed.
On your USCIS form, you will need to include a nine-digit number, and it should be verified by independent attorneys whom you may have a confidential relationship with. The documents will not only help your application process, it will also come in handy during deportation proceedings.
Who Isn’t Required to Fill Out Form I-130A?
Form I-130A is specifically required for applicants of the marriage-based green card, thus only the alien spouse needs it. That means those filling a family sponsorship for other relatives like parents and children don’t need to fill the form.
Meanwhile, you’re not required to pay legal fees for Form I-130A; you only need to pay for the associated form I-130. Also, the processing time for Form I-130A is the same as that for I-130 since you are filing them together.
How Should You Submit Your Form I-130A, and Where?
Upon completing Form I-130A, you will file it with the family sponsorship form I-130 in a single application packet. If you don’t file them at the same time, you will be unable to establish an immediate family relationship with the foreign spouse. Thus, the USCIS will deny your I-130 Petition for Alien Relative.
You will send the green card application form to a single address, which will depend on where you live. The address you send the form to will also depend on whether you are filing standalone I-130 or together with I-485 (concurrent filing).
The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services provide a chart where the appropriate addresses for both scenarios are listed.
To become a green card holder or a lawful permanent resident, it is essential that you familiarize yourself with the required documents and find the best attorney advertising. That way, you or your immediate relative can get the appropriate advice on your address history and other details needed to become a permanent resident.
The interesting thing about completing the process is that you can enjoy every immigration benefit for yourself and any beneficiary spouse you want to get a marriage green card for.
Hiring a reputable immigration attorney can help speed up the processing time, ensure you get free evaluation after paying the required filing fee with the document preparer, and also comply with everything that constitutes acceptance.
Why Not Hire Herman Legal Group to Help You?
Marriage visa application can be a tedious process if you don’t have the right help. With several years of experience handling immigration matters and offering lawyer talk , we are the best immigration firm in the United States. Filling the application form is only the first step in the process, several other steps need to be followed, and you need professional help to get started.
To get started on this professional help, you can schedule a consultation with Herman Legal Group by calling +1-800-808-4013 or +1-216-696-6170, message and data rates apply. To schedule a direct consultation with Richard Herman, himself, you can book online.
Immigrants seeking to obtain lawful permanent residence or green card in the United States are obligated by immigration law to fill out and submit Form I-130A.
The information you will provide in the green card application form may include sensitive or confidential information, and it is compulsory. This form helps the immigration authorities to establish the information provided by petitioners of immigration benefits.
We recommend establishing an attorney-client relationship and obtaining quality attorney services when filling out this form for your green card application process. Let your lawyer or law firm talk you through the entire process, although this doesn’t necessarily secure or constitute acceptance of the application.