The answer is yes. Every American citizen may request a residence card or Green Card for the foreign child of his or her spouse. The rules vary if the children are under 21 and single or if they’re older and married.

What Are the Requirements?

The first requirement to bring a stepson to live in the U.S. is that the link between the American citizen and his/her foreign spouse is a legally valid marriage, no matter where it took place.

Cases of bigamy are never accepted. Bigamy is a crime.

What Do They Mean by “Stepchild”?

Two requirements must be met:

  1. Biological or legally adopted children of a foreigner married to a citizen. “Foster children” are not allowed.
  1. The American citizen may only ask for the stepchildren who are under 18 at the moment of marriage.

Important: it’s essential to understand that 18-year-old or older stepchildren, at the moment of marriage between his/her parent and an American citizen, can’t start this procedure.

Stepchildren Under 21

If the stepchildren are already in the United States, they could choose to adjust their status. If they entered illegally, they can’t. In that case, it’s necessary to consult a lawyer specialized in migration.

What if while the green card is being processed one of the stepchildren turns 21?

Sometimes, the procedures start when the stepchild is still single and under 21, but the processing may take longer, and when he/she turns 21, he/she doesn’t have the papers yet.

Only the age that the stepchild was at the time of his/her parent’s marriage with an American citizen is taken into consideration.