How to Obtain a Green Card based on marriage to U.S. Citizen

Generally what happens when somebody comes to me they need a green card, they’re married to a US citizen. We will be adjusting their status either from somebody who is out of status who overstayed on their visa or somebody who is in legal status on some sort of non-immigrant visa or somebody who entered the country without inspection but has grandfathered under section 245 I.

First thing you need to do is have a valid marriage. A valid marriage is somebody who was legally allowed to marry the other person. Meaning that you are free from any other marriage you were in whether it’s because you’re previously divorced, a spouse has unfortunately passed away or a previous spouse passed away or you would never married before. So, the first thing you have to gather is proof that you were free to marry which would be divorce decrees, and we’re going to need certified divorce decrees, certificates from prior spouses we’re going to need certified one’s not copies. If you were never marry before then you’re just free to get married and you go and get married and you bring in your marriage certificate.

The next thing we’re going to put together is your adjustment of status application. We’ll be preparing an I-130 visa petition for you and I 45 adjustment of status application for you and I 45 supplement if you are grandfathered into 245 I and are required to pay a thousand-dollar penalty fee. Two G-325A biographic data forms one for each of the marrying partners for both spouses. The G-325A’s are actually done in four parts. One, when you submit to the immigration service in the entire package just so you know what the G-325A is, it all goes to the Immigration Service, one part stays with the Immigration Service one part gets sent to the U.S. embassy from the country where the person came from, one part gets sent to the FBI, and one part gets sent to another federal bureau for another investigative unit in the federal government. And this biographical data form will be used to review your background to make sure you are a desirable person to be living in America.

You’ll also need an affidavit of support. An affidavit supported is an I-864 that your spouse will be signing for you. He or she has to provide three years tax returns, a job letter and a bank letter. If your spouse is not working or cannot support you above 125 percent above the poverty level, unless of course your spouse’s in the military it would only be one hundred percent above the poverty level, then at that point you will need a second affidavit of support, somebody else an additional person to sign a second I-864 affidavit of support.

If you have other people in your household such as a brother or sister that you all share one household and that brother or sister or either mom or dad may be willing to give a second affidavit support if you all share the same household they would not be giving a second I-864 but they would be signing and I 864 supplement.

In addition to all of those ones you also want to fill out and I 765 application, I 765 application is an application for your work permit. So, once your entire package of material gets filed with the Immigration Service, which is all of these documents with your marriage certificate, with proof of any prior divorces or terminations of marriage based on death of a prior spouse, with your affidavit of support with the three years tax returns, the job and the bank later, you also have to provide a medical examination by a certified immigration doctor and four passport photos for you and four for your spouse that all need to be submitted in one adjustment of status package. That package gets submitted to the Immigration Service. And once that package gets submitted and processed you prepare for the interview.