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Family Services

NWIRP keeps families together by assisting with family visa applications and representing family members facing deportation.

The FSU processes hundreds of cases each year. Once a month, in Seattle, a Family Visa Workshop is provided for up to 40 people to attend a 40-minute presentation on a general overview of the family-based petition process. If you live in western Washington, contact NWIRP’s main line at (206) 587-4009 to sign up for a Family Visa Workshop and intake. If you live in eastern Washington, please contact the Granger office at (509) 854-2100 or the Wenatchee office at (509) 570-0054, for individual intakes.

Family Rights Include

If you are a Legal Permanent Resident or United States Citizen you can apply to bring a family member to the United States.

NWIRP Protects Rights

The FSU focuses on the following case types: Family-based petitions (Form I-130), petitions for fiancé(e) (Form I-129F), applications for adjustment of status (Form I-485), applications for a travel document (Form I-131), assistance with consular processing, application for waiver of grounds of inadmissibility (Form I-601, Form I-601A), application for permission to reapply for admission (Form I-212), petitions to remove conditions on residence (Form I-751), and general removal defense.

Meheret and Kiflow's Story

I was pregnant and did not want to be a single mother raising my baby alone with my husband far away.

When Meheret, a Seattle resident and U.S. Citizen, married Kiflow of Ethiopia, she never anticipated so many obstacles in beginning their new life together. After their marriage ceremony, Kidane traveled to Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, to obtain their official marriage certificate. At the U.S. Embassy, officers mistrusted her motives and accused Meheret of attempting fraud by being paid to marry Kiflow, subsequently throwing her out of the embassy office. Determined, Meheret flew back and forth until she was able to officially document their marriage, however, ran into another obstacle when she tried to bring her husband to the U.S. With no other recourse, she contacted NWIRP's Seattle Family Services Unit and was assigned a legal advocate to help her with the case.

"I was pregnant and did not want to be a single mother raising my baby alone with my husband far away," Kidane said. After recovering from the birth, she traveled to Addis Ababa to once again bring official proof of the couples' relationship via their newborn daughter's birth certificate. But the U.S. Embassy still denied Kiflow's visa.

After a year of delay, NWIRP staff member Miriam Cervantes tried one final effort to reunite the family, referring the case to the office of Congressman McDermott. A staff assistant took the case into her hands and after several letters to the Embassy in Addis Ababa, Kiflow was finally given an appointment. After more than 18 months, Kiflow was finally reunited with his wife and was able to see his daughter for the first time. When asked about their new life together, Kiflow said, "I am so happy, I couldn't be happier."