Glossary

Use this glossary to find a definition or explanation for a term related to immigration. Start by searching for the term or clicking on the letter your word begins with. You may also view all terms.

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Glossary

Immediate Relative

Certain family members of U.S. citizens may come to the U.S. without a waiting period. These immediate relatives are the citizen's:

  • spouse,
  • parents, if the citizen is 21 or older, and
  • unmarried children under 21.

A citizen may apply for other relatives, but there is a waiting period. A green card holder may apply for relatives, but there will be a waiting period. There are not enough visas for all relatives to come right away.

Glossary

Immigrant

A person who comes from another country to live in the U.S.

Glossary

Immigration and Customs Enforcement

Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE for short) is the government office that enforces laws about who can be in the U.S. ICE removes or deports people who do not have permission to stay in the U.S.

Glossary

Immigration Court

A court that only decides immigration cases, such as whether a person can stay in the U.S. or not.

Glossary

Immigration Status

The right or permission to be in the U.S. How long a person can stay and what they can do depends on the kind of status they have.

Glossary

Inadmissible

Inadmissible means you cannot enter or stay in the U.S. The list of reasons people are considered inadmissible includes:

  • a criminal record,
  • serious disease,
  • fraud, and
  • disobeying immigration rules.
Glossary

Investigator

A person whose job it is to look for more information, such as about a crime, an event, or someone’s past.