Green Card After Getting Married

After the interview, the consular officer will take your passport and, if you are approved, return it with the K-1 affixed to the passport via mail. Sometimes, your passport will be accompanied by a sealed envelope of documents. If that is the case, it is very important that you do not open the envelope (this envelope is only to be opened by DHS officers at the U.S. border). Recently, it seems that the consulates are moving more toward uploading the additional travel electronically so CBP can just pull it up when they scan your passport. If your travel documents were issued electronically, your passport will arrive with a letter explaining that.

Once you receive your visa, you will be able to apply for a one-time entrance into the United States at any date within the validity of your visa. Your visa will expire 6 months at most after its issuance.

You are required to marry your fiancé(e) within 90 days of your arrival into the U.S. If you fail to do so, you must leave the country to avoid being in violation of U.S. immigration law, which could result in deportation and negatively affect future immigration eligibility. The visa cannot be extended beyond 90 days.

As soon as you are married and have your marriage license in hand, in order to stay in the U.S. you are required to file for an “Adjustment of Status” with USCIS, which includes Forms I-485, I-864, I-131, and I-765 and additional supporting evidence of your relationship. The approval of an Adjustment of Status case is what gets you a legal permanent resident card, or a “green card.”

The next steps after filing for Adjustment of Status are:

  1. Once your petition is submitted, you wait 6-9 months for USCIS to schedule an Adjustment of Status interview at the local USCIS field office (during this time you can potentially receive temporary authorization for employment and international travel)
  2. You attend your scheduled interview as a couple and answer questions about your relationship
  3. The interviewing officer evaluates your case and then issues you a 2-year “Conditional Permanent Resident Card”
  4. 1 year and 9 months later (before your conditional card expires), you file Form I-751, Petition to Remove Conditions on Residence with USCIS, along with supporting evidence
  5. USCIS processes your petition for 12-18 months, after which time they issue you a 10-year Permanent Resident Card (without conditions)
  6. Approximately 1-1.5 years later (3 years after becoming a permanent resident), and on the condition that you remain married, you become eligible to file to become a naturalized US citizen!


Request a Consultation

"*" indicates required fields

How Can We Help
I Have Read The Disclaimer*
This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.