In our global society, it is not uncommon to meet people from other countries while at school, at work or while you are abroad. If you fall in love and want to marry someone who lives outside the United States, your fiancé must apply to legally enter the United States.
Bringing your fiancé to the United States
To bring your fiancé to the United States the following steps must be completed:
- You must submit your Form I-129F, Petition for Fiancé, and have it accepted
- Your fiancé must submit their K-1 nonimmigrant visa application and have it accepted
- Your fiancé will arrive in the United States and be examined at a port of entry
- You and your fiancé must marry within 90 days
Following that, your now spouse can apply for a Green Card. They do this by filing a Form I-485 and attending an interview.
Your spouse will be issued a conditional Green Card. The Green Card is valid for two years.
Removing the conditions on residence
Your spouse’s Green Card is conditional if it is based on a marriage less than two years old.
Your spouse must submit Form I-751 to remove the conditions. This form is specifically for spouses with two-year conditional residency. A Form I-90 will not suffice to renew this type of Green Card.
To have your Form I-751 approved, you either must:
- Be married to the U.S. citizen spouse you married when you came to the United States and obtained your Green Card, or
- You married in good faith, but you have since divorced or your marriage was annulled
- You married in good faith, but your marriage ended because you were subject to spousal abuse or extreme cruelty, or
- You can show that terminating your Green Card and removing you from the United States would cause you to suffer extreme hardship
If your Form I-751 is approved, the conditions will be lifted from your Green Card and you will continue to reside in the United States as a lawful permanent resident.
If you take the correct actions, your fiancé can come to the United States to marry you, and can remain in the United States on a conditional Green Card. Then, your spouse can apply to have those conditions removed. This way, your fiancé can enter the United States and remain here legally.