Being married to a U.S. citizen or green card holder makes you eligible for a marriage-based green card, other things considered. Becoming a US resident through marriage may be the best option for married couples who don’t reside together. However, there are rules surrounding marriage green cards, detailed and complex rules that depend largely on the legality of the marriage.
The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services, USCIS, has a set of rules by which it weighs green card applications. First, for the marriage to be considered bona fide, it must be valid, particularly in the region it was held. If the marriage is valid and the alien spouse meets other conditions for obtaining a marriage green card, they will.
Meanwhile, unlike other immigration benefits, illegally entering the United States does not disqualify you from applying for a marriage green card. Below is a set of information you need to know if you’re considering getting a marriage green card in Michigan.
Understanding What a Marriage Green Card Is
A marriage-based green card is an immigration benefit that grants a US or LPR’s spouse the freedom to live and work in the US. The spouse becomes a green card holder and holds the permanent resident status until they decide to naturalize their citizenship. Naturalization simply means upgrading your permanent resident status to US citizenship. A green card holder is eligible to apply for US citizenship after three years of being a green card holder.
How Long Does the Marriage Green Card Application Process Take in Michigan?
The timeline of the marriage green card application process depends on a number of factors. The first is whether you reside in the US or outside; it takes less time if you are outside. Nevertheless, the average processing time for marriage green card applications is about fifteen months, provided there are no delays.
To ensure your application goes smoothly, ensure you fill all the right forms and submit them to the appropriate offices. Also, ensure you fill in the correct information and submit the necessary supporting documents required of you. Working with an immigration lawyer can help reduce your chances of making mistakes when filling out the application.
For spouses of US citizens living in the US, the marriage-based green card timeline is eleven to twenty months. For those living abroad, it takes less time – typically about seven to thirteen months. The timeframe is pretty much the same for spouses of US green card holders living in or outside the country.
How to Apply for a Marriage-Based Green Card in Michigan
The application process for marriage-based green cards anywhere in the US is in three stages. First, you fill out and submit Form I-130; then, you submit Form I-485 or DS-260 and attend your scheduled green card interview.
Filling and Submitting Form I-130
The first stage of the marriage green card application process is filling out and submitting the Petition for Alien Relative (Form I-130). The purpose of this form is to establish a valid relationship with the US citizen or green card holder. Thus, when submitting the form, you are expected to include your marriage documents and other documents establishing your marriage’s legitimacy. These may include a joint bank account statement, joint lease, and pictures from your wedding and after.
Applying for the Green Card
The next stage is to fill out Form I-485 or DS-260, depending on whether you live in the US or outside. Form I-485, Adjustment of Status, is for spouses of citizens and green card holders living in the United States. Since they already have a marriage immigrant visa, they only need to convert that to a marriage-based green card.
This form is to be filed concurrently (at the same time) with Form I-130 for citizen spouses. However, LPR spouses have to wait several more months before filing Form I-485; the USCIS will notify them. Meanwhile, Form DS-260 is the marriage green card application for spouses residing outside the United States.
Attend Your Interview
Once you have submitted the right forms and supporting documents, a date will be set for your green card interview. This is the final stage, and it helps the US government determine whether to give you a green card or not. The immigration officer will ask questions about you and your spouse generally, including your future plans as a couple.
Can Herman Legal Group Help?
Herman Legal Group is versed in immigration processes with years of experience and a track record of success. Thus, yes, we can help you with your green card application and also provide important information that’ll streamline the process. We take care of legal matters while guiding you in filling out the appropriate forms correctly.
If you’re not sure of your eligibility or simply need help with the process, you can reach out to us today. To get started, reach out to us by booking online or calling +1-800-808-4013.
Several factors can hinder a marriage application from going smoothly; that includes leaving out important information from the application. By working with a marriage green card lawyer in Michigan, the chances of making such mistakes are reduced. Thus, your chances of getting the marriage green card application approved increase.