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Background: I'm from Asia working in the US for the past 2 years on an H1B visa in the IT industry. I'm here with my wife & a just-born son. My father recently passed away & consequently my mother is now staying alone in my home country.

Trigger: As far as I know, things are a bit difficult when it comes to applying a US visiting visa for a single parent; the most obvious reason being - single parent, of course. Besides, a single parent can stay only for a maximum of 6 months after which, the person will have to return to his/her home country. Subsequently, the person will have to stay in his/her home country for 6 months before again returning to the US. This process repeats.

Question: Apart from the US, are there any English speaking countries (like Australia, Canada, New Zealand, etc.) that would grant me a work permit visa alongside allowing my Mother to stay with us?

As you can see, it's not an easy thing to do every now & then. Hence the question.

  • There's also a little-known type of B2 visa for "household members" of other nonimmigrants who do not qualify for other types of derivative visas, who get one-year duration of stay and can extend it as necessary. Household members can include co-habitating partners and elderly parents; though I am not sure whether your mother would qualify. It's mentioned in this memo (uscis.gov/sites/default/files/USCIS/Laws/Memoranda/2011/August/…) and 9 FAM 41.31 N14.4 (state.gov/documents/organization/87206.pdf page 25) of the Foreign Affairs Manual – user102008 Jan 3 '15 at 6:06
  • The extensions are made in increments of 6 months; however, it cannot go beyond 1 year. – Ads Jan 5 '15 at 3:00
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I'm a bit confused by why you think a "single parent" would be an issue here? If your mother is retired, and/or you're able to sponsor her, she would be potentially eligible for any number of retirement or aged relative schemes, regardless of whether she comes alone or with her husband.

For example, in Australia, the Aged parent visa (subclass 804) is open to anybody who is of pensionable age (65+) and who has a child who is an Australian permanent resident or citizen. The main catch is that due to tiny quotas (eg. 1,500 in 2014-2015) these can take forever (up to 30 years!) to grant, but if you have >$40,000 to throw at the problem, you can apply for a "contributory parent" visa and get it much faster. And obviously you need to be an Australian permanent resident first, which is also complicated, expensive and slow, although nowhere near as bad as getting a US green card.

Something like the Malaysia My Second Home program might also be an option, since it lets basically anybody live in Malaysia if they can purchase property. Work visas are relatively easy to obtain with sponsorship, but Malaysian IT salaries are considerably lower than those in the US and Australia.

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The UK has a “family of a settled person” visa but:

In Europe, you could also consider some countries where English isn't the main language (e.g. the Netherlands, Denmark…) It's perfectly possible to make a career in IT as an English-speaker there. Unfortunately, the visa situation for your mother would not be much better (fees are typically quite a bit lower but qualifying for the visa is just as difficult).

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