Many people are under the mistaken belief that marriage is an instant ticket to a Green Card. They think that if they are married to a U.S. citizen that they are now safely living in the US. However, simply marrying your U.S. Citizen (or Green Card holder) significant other may not be the answer.
The answer? Yes, you can still be deported even if you are married to a US citizen.
There are four main qualifications that must be met if you want to get a Green Card through marriage. The simple ACT of getting married is not enough to guarantee that you can lawfully remain in the U.S.
This is important:
If you entered the US illegally, you CANNOT apply for a Green Card through marriage in the US, but may be able to file for a 601A waiver. If you fall into this category (or think you may) the best thing to do is to call an experienced immigration attorney as soon as possible.
It is your burden to prove that your marriage is real and not just for purposes of immigration. You can’t just marry someone you met, or are using to get a Green Card (and yes, of course this does happen), and pass the various levels of questioning and verification. This includes proof of living together, proof of a real romantic relationship, and a clean record with law enforcement.
3)PROOF OF INCOME
You have to prove that you will not become a “public charge” (meaning end up on welfare) as a burden to U.S. taxpayers. All U.S. citizens who file for their immigrant spouses must show a minimum level income of their tax returns to satisfy this requirement.
As with all Green Card applications, the intending immigrant must pass a medical exam.
REMEMBER: Even if you jump through all these hoops, it will then take months (or years) to be approved for a conditional (two year) green card.
As with all immigration cases your best bet is to avoid problems and call an experienced immigration attorney right away.
If you or your spouse are seeking a Green Card and need the help of an experienced immigration attorney, contact Shafer, Grossman & Rupp today for a free, no-obligation consultation at (714) 702-5222.