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(616) 530-0101

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  • Grand Rapids Law Group, PLLC, 1779 28th St. SW, 49519 Wyoming, Michigan United States
  • grlg@thegrlg.com
  • (616) 530-0101
  • (616) 777-5232

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Let our family immigration lawyers help with your immigration issues from a divorce or marriage

Marriage and divorce can be significant when it comes to immigration status in the United States.

Aliens, both legal and illegal, can potentially receive benefits from their marriage regarding their ability to obtain a visa, or a green card and lawful permanent resident status. This applies to permanent residents, foreign nationals with a valid non-immigration status, and even aliens who are out of status.

There are several requirements that need to be met in order for immigration benefits to be available after a marriage. First, the marriage must be considered valid, and must still be existing during the application for a visa, green card, or other immigration benefit. The marriage also cannot have been entered into solely for the purpose of conferring immigration benefits to an alien. Additionally, with the Supreme Court recently stating that the Defense of Marriage Act was unconstitutional, same-sex marriage can also confer immigration rights similar to heterosexual marriages.

A Grand Rapids Family Visa lawyer can help understand how a marriage or divorce can affect your immigration case

Additionally, certain types of marriages are not considered valid for immigration law purposes. These marriages include common law marriages, a marriage not done by legal civil authorities, but by custom, polygamous marriages, incestuous marriages, and marriages where the couple were not physically present during the marriage proceedings, although if the marriage was consummated after the ceremony, it will often be considered valid.

If an alien who is a spouse of a United States citizen or a permanent resident is admitted into the United States less than two years after the marriage, they are granted conditional permanent resident status. If the immigrant is granted conditional permanent residency, then the alien and his/her spouse must petition for the removal of the residency conditions together. Typically this is done in the 3 months before the end of the second year in which the alien is allowed conditional permanent residency. There are additional exceptions, including a battered or abused spouse exception, and an exception based on the foreign national’s child receiving conditional permanent residency.

If the marriage is terminated while an I-485 is still in process, it could cause the foreign national’s Adjustment of Status petition to be denied. However, if the parties are only separated, or no longer reside in the same household, then the I-485 Adjustment of Status petition cannot be denied, as long as the marriage was entered in good faith by the couple.

Let a family immigration attorney from the Grand Rapids Law Group discuss your immigration concerns regarding marriage or divorce with you

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