Does Marriage Guarantee You a Green Card?
If you marry a U.S. citizen, you can become a Green Card holder and maintain lawful permanent resident status.
For those who have dreams of immigrating to the United States or/and remaining within America permanently, understanding the various options for obtaining lawful resident status is a must. For those who are engaged to U.S. citizens, marriage is one pathway to Green Card status. For more information about how to obtain a Green Card through marriage, reach out to our experienced Nashville immigration attorneys at Ozment Law, PLC today for a consultation.
Green Cards for Immediate Relatives of U.S. Citizens
Those foreign nationals who are the immediate relatives of U.S. citizens may apply for a Green Card, which provides lawful permanent resident status. Immediate relatives are classified by U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services as those who:
- Are married to a U.S. citizen;
- Are the unmarried child of a U.S. citizen who is under 21 years of age; or
- Are the parent of a U.S. citizen who is 21 years of age or above.
How to Get a Green Card After Marriage to a U.S. Citizen
In order to eligible for a marriage-based Green Card, you must prove that:
- You are legally married;
- The person to whom you are married is a U.S. citizen; and
- That your marriage is real, and that it was not pursued merely for the purpose of obtaining a Green Card.
Of course, you will also need to submit to a background check and an interview, and submit filing fees in addition to establishing the marriage requirements listed above.
How to Prove Your Marriage is Real
Proving that your marriage is real is one of the most difficult parts of obtaining a marriage-based Green Card. During an interview, both you and your spouse will be asked a number of questions, ranging from how you met each other to how you decided to get married to more difficult questions, such as a description of the first gift you gave your spouse or the date that your spouse first met your parents. In the event that your marriage is a sham and you are found to be lying, you can be permanently barred from receiving a marriage-based Green Card, and face a fine of up to $250,000.
Marriage is Not a Guarantee that You Will Get a Green Card
Getting married is one of the ways to receive a Green Card, but it is foolish to assume that simply getting married to a U.S. citizen will result in the automatic receipt of a Green Card; instead, even after marriage, there are often many hoops to jump through.
When you partner with our Nashville immigration lawyers at the office of Ozment Law, PLC, we can help you to understand your options for applying for a Green Card, as well as many other immigration and visa-related issues. To schedule a consultation with our law office, please call us directly or send us a message telling us more about how we can be of assistance.