How to Compare IR3 and IR4 Visas

IR3 and IR4 visas are for children adopted in other countries, or who are being brought over for adoption. There are several types of visas the government allows people to apply for. Applicants must know which visa they need and the requirements for obtaining it.


    • 1

      Gather the information of the child who needs the visa. Applications for IR3 and IR4 visas need to be filled out with complete personal information, such as child's age, her birth parents' status, and the future parent or parents. All this information must be verified by the government.

    • 2

      Discuss the adoption protocols of a foreign country with an adoption lawyer or with a government liaison from that country. Depending on the rules, parents will have to apply for either an IR3 or IR4 visa.

    • 3

      Plan for the US Bureau of Citizenship and Immigration Services to look through the future parent's financial and home life before authorizing any type of visa for adoption.

    • 4

      Decide where the adoption process will occur: in the United States or in the child's home country.

    • 5

      Check with the adoptee's home country to be sure the adoption process is legally valid in that country as well as in the United States. And adoption must be legal in both countries to qualify for the IR3 visa. This may take longer initially, but the in the end the child will receive citizenship automatically.

    • 6

      Apply for and IR4 visa when the home country will only let the future parents only get guardianship of a child, rather than full adoption. The adoptive parent's state must allow this type of adoption for this option to be legal.

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