Did you know that 14 million couples in the US are in a long-distance relationship? While this is just 4% of the population, perhaps you’re in this small minority!
Have you found love overseas and want to return home with them? Then you’ll need to apply for a marriage green card. Here’s a brief guide to everything you need to know:
Apply for a K-1 Fiance Visa First
If you’re already thinking about the marriage green card, then you need to hold your horses. Before you get married, you need to first apply for the K-1 fiance visa. This is where you (as the US citizen) apply for a specific visa that allows your loved one to come to the US.
This visa lets your significant other stay for up to 90 days. Within these 90 days, they have to get married to you. Otherwise, they’ll have to return to their home country.
Once you receive approval for the visa, your fiance has to visit the United States within 6 months. Otherwise, the visa expires.
If you want more information about the K-1 fiance visa, here’s a great resource: https://abogadoray.com/practice-areas/immigration/fiance-visa/.
After the K-1 Visa
Once you’ve gotten married within 90 days, then your new spouse should apply for permanent residency. This is how they can get a green card through marriage. The green card marriage cost is just under $2,000.
However, before this can happen, you have to apply for Adjustment of Status on their behalf. You’ll have to fill out both Form I-130 and Form I-485 or Form DS-260.
Once you’ve filed, it’ll take a little bit of time for your spouse to receive their green card. If you’re living in the US, it can take 29 to 38 months to receive. If you’re living abroad, then it can take 23 to 32 months.
As you can see, the marriage green card timeline is quite long. Do note that during this period, your significant other won’t be able to work, as they won’t have the legal right to. Make sure that before you bring them over, you have either enough savings and/or work to support your household.
For Those Who Are Already Married
Perhaps you were impatient and didn’t want to apply for the K-1 fiance visa. If you already got married to them in another country, you can file for a nonimmigrant K-3 visa after filing form I-130. This allows your spouse to join you in the US while you wait for their green card approval.
Bring Your Love Over and Get Their Marriage Green Card
Now you have more information about getting a marriage green card. While you’ll most likely have to go through the K-1 fiance visa first, it’ll all be worth it when you can finally have them by your side for good!
So don’t wait another second if you’re impatient about getting your significant other here. Get started on your K-1 visa today and get the process moving!
Did you find this article on the marriage-based green card helpful? Then make sure you also take a look at our other articles!
*Photos by Jonathan Borba.