Reuniting with spouses in the United States - Arvian Immigration Law Firm
Marriage Visa

Reuniting with spouses in the United States

One of the fundamental foundations of US immigration law is family reunion. 

If you are a US citizen or have a green card, you can sponsor your spouse for an immigrant visa to the US. 

There are no annual limits on the number of immigrant visas issued for the purpose of reuniting U.S. citizens with their spouses.

Spouses of green card holders, on the other hand, fall into a narrow group known as second preference – F2A. Because this category has an annual quota, the amount of immigration visas available for spouses of permanent residents is limited. This waiting period is subject to change and is determined by the number of applications received in this category as well as the general demand for visas. The Visa Bulletin, an official document released by the US Department of State, contains information on the current status of the annual quota and the waiting period.

The immigrant visa grants you the legal right to reside and work in the United States.

The main form to be presented for family reunification with spouses in the United States is Immigration Petition I-130, Petition for Alien Relative. A petition can be filed on behalf of a foreign spouse by a U.S. citizen or permanent resident.

When a relative files an I-130 petition to reconnect with you, they are sent a Form I-797C notification with your Priority date. The priority date is the day on which your seat in the visa line begins. This date may be the same as the date the petition was received, or it may be many days later. Priority date allows you to track the status of your turn in the Visa Bulletin.

The I-130 petition must be prepared in line with USCIS rules and must include documentation of your marriage:

  • a copy of your marriage certificate; – a copy of your divorce from all prior marriages;
  • Photographs of spouses’ passports;
  • Evidence of changes in names or surnames (marriage, divorce, court ruling on name change, adoption, etc.).

If you are a citizen of the United States, you must present one of the following documents to prove your citizenship:

– a copy of the consular certificate of birth abroad (if born abroad from U.S. citizens); a copy of the certificate of naturalization; and a copy of the citizenship certificate.

To prove your Green Card status, you must produce one of the following documents:

A duplicate of the Green Card.

If the green card holder’s spouse is legally present in the United States, you can obtain a green card through family reunification without leaving the country. This is known as status adjustment. Because the I-130 petition does not grant the United States any immigration status, the beneficiary must constantly maintain its legal standing. 

If you have been married for less than two years when your spouse obtains permanent residence status in the United States, he is granted a two-year temporary Green Card. You and your spouse must file Form I-751, Petition to Remove Conditions on Residence, together to modify the temporary Green Card. To avoid deportation, the application must be submitted within 90 days of the interim Green Card’s expiration date.

It is critical to remember that the entire immigration and family reunion procedure necessitates meticulous attention to detail and rigorous adherence to USCIS instructions and rules. To avoid delays and complications in your case, all relevant paperwork should be carefully prepared and provided.

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