Marriage Visa Information for the LGBT Community

What is a Marriage Visa?

While the green card application is in the process of completion, the spouse of a U.S. citizen can be granted “conditional permanent residence.” At a future date, your spouse may apply for U.S. citizenship.You may be prohibited or unqualified to apply for a marriage visa due to a past criminal record, terrorism, breaking certain immigration laws or having a contagious disease. In order to qualify for a marriage visa, you must possess a marriage certificate from a governmental office and have the ability to prove that the marriage is not a sham with the sole intention of obtaining a green card.

You may need an immigration attorney if you are unsure about the requirements and whether or not they are met. USCIC processes complete applications faster so getting an immigration attorney may help speed up the process of receiving your visa. Therefore, the immigration attorneys in Pride Legal’s trusted network are here to help you through the process and answer any questions or concerns you may have.

What is Fraudulent Marriage?

A marriage is considered legitimate if you and your spouse got married with the intention of creating a life together. However, a marriage will be considered fraud if your decision to marry your partner was made on the basis of attaining a green card.

There are ways for the USCIS to decide whether or not a marriage is legitimate; If a couple has been married for less than two years since receiving a green card or since immigrating to the U.S., USCIS will test the couple for up until two years to make sure that the couple is not committing marriage fraud. USCIS may interview the couple or their friends and request that they submit documentation proving that they live together.

USCIS seeks the following characteristics when determining whether the marriage is fraudulent:

  • The age difference between spouses is ten years or more
  • A spouse has married outside of his or her religious and/or ethnic background
  • The couple lives in California and have requested that the marriage remain confidential
  • The American spouse has previously married an alien who sought permanent residency or acquired their citizenship through marriage to a U.S. Citizen
  • The spouses have different addresses

If you or a loved one has any questions or concerns regarding obtaining a marriage visa, contact a Los Angeles Gay and Lesbian Immigration Attorney today for a free case consultation. 


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