The Obama administration said Friday that starting in 2015 it would reduce the lengthy delays facing thousands of Haitians who have already been approved to join family members in the United States and become legal permanent residents.

Currently, American citizens or permanent residents living in this country may apply for a residency visa, known as a green card, on behalf of relatives in Haiti. More than 100,000 such relatives have been approved but, because of annual caps, some of them face wait times of up to a dozen years before they can receive visas.