Green Card through Marriage

Applying based on marriage to a U.S. citizen may be among the fastest ways to immigrate, and spouses of U.S. citizens if the couple was able to prove that their marriage was in good faith. If the marriage is less than two years old, the immigrant spouse becomes a conditional resident with a permanent resident card that expires within two years. An additional application is required to remove the conditional status or the status is automatically terminated. Whether your spouse or your fiancee or spouse is in the U.S. or overseas, our office will assist you in determining which application to file and further assist you in the process of adjusting status or apply at a U.S. consulate or embassy overseas.

The most common situations for marriage-based immigration are:

  • Both husband and wife are in the US ;
  • Both husband and wife are outside the US ;
  • US Citizen is in the US and alien spouse is outside the US ; Please see the K-3 visa category under the Temporary Visa category above.
  • Not yet married, but will marry in the US very soon (fiance / fiancee). Please see the K-1 visa under the Temporary Visa category above.

If you are a U.S. citizen and your fiance/fiancee or spouse is overseas, our office will assist you in determining whether you need to file a K-1 or K-3 visa petition by filing the family petition with USCIS in the U.S. Once approved, we will also assist you in preparing for your fiancée/fiancé’s interview at the U.S. Embassy.

It is important that you fully understand your situation and the requirements of your case, as each green card marriagecase is different. You will have to submit numerous documents and detailed information about you and your spouse. The preparation of all applications and documents in an accurate, organized, and legally compliant manner is extremely important to the success of your case and can help avoid delays and potential denials.

As there is always an element of risk in all green card marriage cases, we thoroughly review and prepare all cases to ensure legal compliance and a successful outcome. We will analyze potential scenarios and clarify options, advise and provide assistance with collecting required documentation and information, ensure all aspects of the case are legally compliant, complete all required forms, compile all the necessary items for the application, and submit everything to USCIS, serve as your legal representative and communicate with USCIS throughout the entire process and thoroughly prepare you and your spouse for the green card marriage interview.

Work Authorization and Advance Parole

Work authorization may be applied for as part of the green card marriage application. The work authorization will take approximately 2-3 months to arrive and is designed to allow the foreign national to legally work in the United States while waiting for his/her green card. Of course if the foreign national is in the United States in a status that already legally authorizes them to work, then the work authorization card is not as important.

Once the green card application is submitted, the spouse cannot travel outside of the United States until he/she receive advance parole (unless she /she is in another vaild staus such as H-1B or L-1). If he/she travels outside of the United States while their green card application is pending before receiving advance parole, he/she will be deemed to have abandoned the green card application and it will be denied. Moreoverm if the spouse has any unlawful presence issues or overstayed their visa, using advance parole might subject them to a 3 or 10 year bar if they leave the country. Advance parole generally takes up to 30-60 days to receive.

The Green Card Marriage Interview

As a result of rumors heard from others, stories read online, or just a general fear of meeting with government officials, the green card marriage interview is dreaded by many. In order to ensure that you are well-prepared for the green card marriage interview and that you have gathered all necessary documentation, it is essential to work closely with your immigration lawyer.

Conditional permanent residency

If you have been married for less than two years before the filing of the application, you will receive a conditional green card valid for a 2 year period.  You will be required to submit an application to remove the conditions of the green card and convert it into a 10 year green card within 90 days of the 2 year anniversary date. The purpose of the conditional green card is that it gives USCIS an opportunity to re-evaluate the marriage to ensure that it was not entered into to circumvent immigration laws. It is very important to discuss your case with your immigration lawyer prior to applying to remove the conditions of your green card, as certain factors can complicate your case.

Please contact us to discuss your case and we will explain the marriage green card process and time frame, and outline exactly what you need to prepare and what you can expect. We also help couples who fail to file the joint petition to remove conditions on residence within the required 90-day period. Our experience will benefit you and your family both before and after marriage. If you and your spouse or future spouse need help with visas, adjustment of status, or the petition to remove conditional status, please contact us.