U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services has issued guidance in the USCIS Policy Manual to update when an immigrant visa number “becomes available” for the purpose of calculating a noncitizen’s age in certain situations under the Child Status Protection Act (CSPA).
For a child to obtain lawful permanent resident status in the United States based on their parent’s approved petition for a family-sponsored or employment-based visa, the child generally must be under the age of 21. If the child turns 21 and “ages out” during the immigration process, the child generally is no longer eligible to immigrate with the parent based on the parent’s petition.
Congress enacted the CSPA to protect certain noncitizen children from losing eligibility to obtain lawful permanent resident status based on an approved visa petition by providing a method to calculate the child’s age that considers when an immigrant visa number “becomes available.” More information is available in the Police Alert and on the Child Status Protection Act page.