How to apply for a Green Card for your spouse?
American citizens that get married to foreign nationals have the right to
petition for permanent residence, also known as Green Card, for their husband or
wife. The process of application for the green card is also known as application
for an immigrant visa. The foreign spouse can be present in the United States or
outside of the U.S. to go through the complete application process. If the
foreign spouse is inside the U.S. with a legal immigration status then is
possible to do an adjustment of status to adjust from the current immigration
status into a immigrant status and receive a green card based on the marriage.
Spouses of U.S. citizens are excluded from all numerical quota limitations. This
means that there are an unlimited number of Green Cards available to foreign
nationals who marry U.S. citizens. Order the
Green Card through Marriage to learn more
If the foreigner spouse is present out of the United States, but the American
citizen is living in the U.S. then the petition can be submitted by the American
husband or wife in the U.S., but the application process can be completed
through the local U.S. embassy or consulate in the country or residence of the
foreign national. Then the U.S. embassy will issue an immigrant visa for the
spouse to travel to the U.S. to meet with the American citizen and live
permanently in the United States. A few weeks later after arrival in the U.S.
the Green Cards will arrive in the mail.
It is important to note that if the process of obtaining an immigrant visa
through marriage is completed before the couple have been married for two years
then the foreign national will receive a Green Card with conditions, what means
that the couple must wait two years to request the removal of the
conditions on the Green Card after two years of the date of issue of the
Green Card. This may be a problem for the green card holder in case of divorce
or marriage dissolution because the green card holder won't be able to remove
the conditions and maybe out of status and lose the green card.
In some cases if the American citizen has been a resident of a foreign country
for at least 6 months, then it may be possible in some cases to do the complete
petition and application process at the local U.S. embassy or consulate in the
country of residence of the American citizen. The main advantage of this
consular application is that the process of applying for the green card for
married couples is usually completed faster in just a few months and then the
couple can travel together to live in the U.S. Please note that Green Cards are
only issued to people that plan to live in the U.S. therefore is not recommended
to apply for a green card if you don't plan to live in the U.S.
For couples that are not married yet, instead of waiting to be married, they
have the option to apply for a K-1 Fiancée and Fiancé Visa
for the foreign national to come to the United States to marry the U.S. citizen
after arrival in the U.S.
If the foreign spouse have unmarried underage children, then the U.S. citizen
can also petition for permanent residency or Green Card as the stepfather or
stepmother of the children. A great benefit for the children, is that if
eventually the Green Card holder parent becomes a
U.S. citizen before the children are 18 years old, then they will obtain the
U.S. citizenship automatically without any additional citizenship application by
the children, just by action of law, because the parent became naturalized.
After receiving a certificate of citizenship or naturalization they can request
The process of completing and submitting a request for a Green Card through
marriage to a United States citizen can be both very difficult but by
ordering and downloading this Immigration Package you will be able to learn
and understand the complete application process and will find access to official
immigration forms, forms instructions and helpful information to have a
successful Green Card application.