"We now hold that a person born abroad to unmarried parents can qualify as a legitimated “child” under section 101(c)(1) of the Act if he or she was born in a country or State that has eliminated all legal distinctions between children based on the marital status of their parents or has a residence or domicile in such a country or State (including a State within the United States), irrespective of whether the country or State has prescribed other legal means of legitimation. In so holding, we recede from Matter of Hines, 24 I&N Dec. 544 (BIA 2008), and Matter of Rowe, 23 I&N Dec. 962 (BIA 2006), to the extent these decisions hold that the concept of “legitimation” must be interpreted uniformly throughout the Act, including for purposes of visa preference classification. Consequently, our holdings in Matter of Clahar, 18 I&N Dec. 1 (BIA 1981), and Matter of Goorahoo, 20 I&N Dec. 782 (BIA 1994), are hereby reinstated and reaffirmed."
** Matter of Cross, Int. Dec. No. 3826, Feb. 12, 2015.
Read BIA ruling at http://www.justice.gov/eoir/vll/intdec/vol26/3826.pdf