Green Cards

Obtaining Green Cards through marriage

When a U.S. citizen or U.S. permanent resident marries someone who is a legal resident of another country, it is usually possible for the spouse coming from the other country to obtain a green card. Obtaining a green card allows the immigrant to become a lawful permanent resident (LPR), meaning he or she can legally reside and work in the country. In order to successfully obtain a green card through marriage, you and your spouse will need to fill out certain forms and make sure that you have all the necessary documentation in order. Failing to complete the application process correctly can ultimately delay your ability to live with your loved on in the United States.

Spouses of U.S. Citizens applying for permanent residency

At Matemu Law Office P.C, our immigration lawyer has the knowledge and skills that are needed to properly guide you through the process, from start to finish. With all of the changes that are continuing to be made to the United States’ immigration laws, it is vital that you have the assistance of a trained legal professional.

Applying for your Green Card

The forms that are used to apply for residency through marriage include the Form I-130 (Petition for Alien Relative) and the Form I-485 (Application to Register Permanent Residence or to Adjust Status), according to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services. The process for when and how each form is filed depends on whether the sponsoring spouse is a U.S. citizen or a permanent resident, as well as whether or not the other spouse is already in the country. If the couple has been married less than two years, the residency that is granted will be on a conditional basis.

Some of the various types of documents that are needed in the green card application process include the following: a copy of the civil marriage certificate; copies of documentation showing that any previous marriages have been terminated, such as through divorce, annulment or the death of a previous spouse; evidence of legal name changes; and passport-style photos. The sponsoring spouse will also need to show proof of his or her citizenship or permanent residency.

Recent changes affecting same-sex spouses

The option of obtaining a green card through marriage has recently been expanded to also include same-sex married couples. This is due to the fact that the Supreme Court ruled the Defense of Marriage Act unconstitutional on June 26, 2013. The ruling allows same-sex spouses to receive the same benefits as heterosexual couples under immigration law. This will lead to many more individuals being eligible to apply for green cards due to marriage to a U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident.

Contact our Immigration Attorneys

Don’t hesitate to get the help you need for your green card application. Contact The Matemu Law Office P.C. so that we can assist you and your loved one. We look forward to working with you!