Does marrying an American guarantee citizenship?

Does marrying an American guarantee citizenship?

Marriage to a U.S. citizen does not guarantee a green card or citizenship in the United States. Because the government takes false weddings extremely seriously, applications for U.S. green cards through marriage are rigorously reviewed. Even if you marry a U.S. citizen, you may be denied entry into the United States or granted only a limited status if immigration officials determine that your marriage is fraudulent or that one of you is in fact a non-citizen.

There are several ways in which someone can become ineligible for a green card or lose their status as a permanent resident. For example, if your spouse files for divorce, dies, or becomes abusive, you could be deported, even if you have done nothing wrong. Further, if you are arrested for a crime involving moral turpitude (a very broad category) or otherwise violate any law, you could be forced to leave the country. Finally, if you lie on any part of your application, such as when you answer "yes" to the question about whether you have ever been convicted of a felony or other serious crime, you could be denied entry into the United States or receive only a limited status.

Because immigration laws can change frequently, especially regarding marriages between citizens of different countries, it is best to get advice from an attorney before you marry. A lawyer can help you understand what risks you are taking by marrying without first getting legal status.

Can an illegal immigrant get citizenship through marriage?

The question of whether your marriage will result in a green card (legal permanent residency in the United States) is another. Nothing prevents you from marrying a U.S. citizen or almost anybody else if you are an undocumented immigrant in the United States (sometimes known as a "illegal alien"). However, there are several barriers that may prevent an undocumented immigrant spouse of a U.S. citizen from becoming a legal resident.

The first problem is that to be eligible for a green card, your marriage must be valid under U.S. law. If it is not, then even though you are married to a U.S. citizen, any non-U.S. citizen spouse you have cannot claim any legal right to stay in the country permanently.

In addition, to be granted a green card, your marriage must be "publicly recognized" by the government of its destination state. This means that if you are living in Mexico and marry a Mexican citizen, their marriage would not be considered valid for immigration purposes unless both parties had the opportunity to apply for and receive a license from a Mexican official.

Finally, even if you do get married in a jurisdiction that allows such marriages (i.e., where licenses are issued), you can still be denied a green card if the officials who decide these matters use their discretion to conclude that your marriage is not in fact legitimate.

Can you marry for citizenship?

If you marry a US citizen, you will not be eligible for US citizenship immediately. However, you may be qualified for a US green card, which can lead to US citizenship.

In order to apply for a US green card, the immigrant spouse must meet several requirements. They must be able to support their spouse financially, have a valid visa, and more. The process can take many years because there are so many applicants each year. It is best to talk with an attorney who has experience working with US immigration law to find out more about your options.

Spouses of US citizens will not be able to work in the United States while their application for residency is pending. When their application is approved, they will be given a resident permit that allows them to travel to and live in the United States. At that point, they can file for permanent residence after spending at least three years in the country.

US citizens can apply for a visa for their spouse. There are different types of visas available.

Do you automatically become a US citizen through marriage?

The USCIS website has more information about the relationship between marriage and citizenship.

Does marrying an American make you legal?

You must meet certain qualifications to be granted a US green card include being able to support yourself and your spouse financially, having good moral character, and more.

The US government requires that foreign citizens get permission from the US Department of State before they can marry a US citizen. The process is called "petitioning for a visa." The petitioner needs to provide many details about the marriage including where and when it will take place, who will attend the wedding, and how much it will cost. The petitioner also has the option of including a request for asylum during this process. If the petitioner is approved, the marriage will be recorded by the US Embassy or Consulate in the country where it took place. Only then will the petitioners be allowed to enter the United States.

Once you are married, you cannot be separated unless one of you is a prisoner of war or detained by the government of the other's country. Even though you are no longer married, you can still apply for a visa if you believe it is necessary for work or other reasons. The divorce rate is high in India so if you decide to divorce your husband/wife, be sure to do it properly.

What happens when you marry a permanent resident?

You can seek for permanent resident status if you marry someone who has lawful permanent resident status in the United States (a "green card"). If you are already in the United States and meet the requirements, you can request that USCIS change your status to permanent residence. Your spouse will be given an I-551 form to file with USCIS.

To qualify for permanent resident status, you must fulfill some education requirement to be considered "qualified" for a green card. You must also show that you or your spouse have good moral character. The process of applying for a green card is called "registration." There are two ways to register: at a port of entry into the United States or from abroad.

If you are registered at a port of entry into the United States, you will need to present proof that you or your spouse have enough money to support yourself comfortably while waiting years for your application to be processed. If you cannot afford this, you will not be granted a visa.

The second way to register is by providing notice of intention to move to the United States. To do so, an applicant needs only to provide his or her name and date of birth to a U.S. consulate outside of the United States. The consulate will then notify any relatives of its decision via mail.

Can a US citizen marry an alien from outside the US?

A US citizen is either hired or charged money to marry someone from outside the nation and obtain a green card for him or her. Marriages arranged through mail-order wedding services in which both the alien and the citizen are aware that the marriage is a sham. Appear on a list of alien marriages maintained by the government.

An alien can apply for permanent residence status by marrying a US citizen. The process is called "marriage promotion." The American Immigration Lawyers Association says there are at least three ways to get married so you can qualify for a green card: through a religious official, a notary public, or a commissioner at a Department of Motor Vehicles office. It's best to get married in a state where same-sex couples can marry, because states that allow gay marriage tend to be more progressive with immigration law.

As long as the marriage is valid where it was performed and neither person has since divorced, died, or entered into another legitimate union, they will be eligible to apply for a green card. There are many factors involved in determining if the marriage was done for the purpose of obtaining a green card, such as whether there was financial compensation for the marriage.

The spouse of a US citizen can also apply for a green card by demonstrating that she or he is financially dependent on the citizen and will become eligible to receive citizenship upon the latter's naturalization.

About Article Author

Anne Patterson

Anne Patterson is a former federal prosecutor who has spent her career fighting crime and working to protect people's rights. She has tried cases in both state court and federal court. Anne knows that justice does not always come quick or easy, but she is committed to doing her job well and standing up for what is right.

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