My aunt applied for the F4 US (Family Preference Immigrant Visa) 13 years ago for my mother and her family. Now that we have received our approved petition letter after 13 years, we’re not sure if children who were 13 years old at the time when their case was filed, and are over 21 now, are still eligible to carry on with further processing. Although the names of all applicants (including children) are still visible under case description along with their respective ‘PAY THE FEE’ option boxes, we’re not sure whether or not they have been considered aged out (as they are over 21 now). Please let me know if this could be an issue in the near future so that we can submit the fees of all applicants without having any doubt.

  • Are you confusing the I-130 petition approval with a visa number becoming available? Because it usually takes no more than a few years for the I-130 petition to be approved. If they are asking you to pay the fee now, then a visa number is close to being available (which is about right since visa numbers are available now for F4 petitions filed about 13 years ago for beneficiaries born in most countries). But the I-130 petition itself was probably approved many years ago. Can you tell us the I-130 filing date and the I-130 approval date?
    – user102008
    Jul 31, 2019 at 21:18
  • It says ‘NVC has received an approved immigrant visa petition from the USCIS’. Now they’re asking us to begin online processing for immigrant visa case creation; we’re asked to pay the visa application fee followed by filling out DS-260 IV forms for each of the candidates/applicants enlisted on the Immigrant visa portal. Priority date: 19th January, 2006 while the date mentioned on the (approved petition) letter is 2nd April, 2019.
    – ayesha mir
    Aug 3, 2019 at 6:11
  • The petitioner should have received an I-130 approval notice from USCIS, possibly many years ago.
    – user102008
    Aug 3, 2019 at 16:10
  • Yes, we received the notice of action after 5-7 months of filing, but didn’t hear anything for years until April, 2019. Now is the time to submit the fees along with other documents (i.e. Affidavit of Support etc), but we’re confused whether or not we should pay the fees of children over 21. Please let me know if there’s anything we can do to ensure that children aren’t aged out, and that their fee to be paid doesn’t go wasted.
    – ayesha mir
    Aug 4, 2019 at 7:37
  • The petitioner should have received 1) an I-797C which is the I-130 receipt, indicating that USCIS received the I-130, and 2) an I-797 with Notice Type: Approval Notice which is the I-130 approval notice, indicating that USCIS approved the I-130. Perhaps the notice you are referring to is the approval notice.
    – user102008
    Aug 4, 2019 at 7:40

1 Answer 1


Yes, they are eligible for the visa.

Congress recognized that many children were aging out due to large USCIS processing backlogs, so it enacted the Child Status Protection Act (CSPA) to protect certain children from aging out. The CSPA went into effect on August 6, 2002.

CSPA does not change the definition of a child. Instead, CSPA provides a method for calculating a person’s age to see if they meet the definition of a child for immigration purposes. The calculated age is the child’s “CSPA age.” This allows some people to remain classified as children beyond their 21st birthday. However, CSPA does not change the requirement that you must be unmarried in order to remain eligible for classification as a child.

Please check this link for detailed information: https://www.uscis.gov/greencard/child-status-protection-act

  • Please let me know if they’re aged out or not according to the CSPA. Priority date: 19th Jan, 2006, Approval date: 17th April, 2009. (Children were 12 and 13 years old at the time the petition was filed) P.S The letter stating that we’re supposed to start our visa case creation process online, was received on the 2nd of April, 2019.
    – ayesha mir
    Aug 4, 2019 at 16:57
  • Age at Time of Visa Availability - (Approval Date - Filing Date) = CSPA Age; 26 - (04/17/19 - 01/19/06) = 13 (approximately) ; 25 - (04/17/19 - 01/19/06) = 12 (approximately). Therefore, eligible.
    – IanDan
    Aug 5, 2019 at 15:19
  • Thank you for your useful feedback; but the approval date you’ve mentioned in your calculation is 04/17/19, however it was 04/17/09 as mentioned in my last comment. Please recheck your calculation!
    – ayesha mir
    Aug 6, 2019 at 16:10
  • Also, I’m very confused about how CSPA age is calculated because there are multiple formulae suggested by various sites/forums all over the internet. Shouldn’t the pending period be the time frame between Approval date and the day we received NVC’s letter regarding our Visa case creation? Since it involved a time frame of 10 years, our current age has gone beyond 21 now.
    – ayesha mir
    Aug 6, 2019 at 16:49
  • What are you considering approval date? Here's what USCIS' website says: "The date the visa is considered available is the later of these two dates: The date the petition was approved; or The first day of the month of the Department of State Visa Bulletin that indicates that a visa is available for you in the Final Action Dates chart." What I understand from that definition is that you should use the date that the visa becomes available. That way the children will not age out due to the fact that it takes 13 years for a visa to become available.
    – IanDan
    Aug 7, 2019 at 14:53

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