There are situations where you will require an immigration lawyer after marriage. These are situations where one or both partners in the marriage are not U.S. citizens and are seeking residence in the United States. Today we’re going to talk a little bit about these situations and how an immigration attorney can help you.
Immigration Lawyer After Marriage: Help With Spouse Visas
There are a few incidences where you may need the services of an immigration lawyer after marriage, these include:
- When you were married outside the U.S. but one of you is a U.S. citizen
- When a spouse is a U.S. citizen and wishes to bring their non-citizen spouse into the U.S. as an immediate relative.
- When you and your spouse are both non-citizens seeking to relocate to the U.S.
The K3 Spouse Visa
The K3 Spouse Visa is a visa that is granted to the non-U.S. citizen spouse of a U.S. citizen.
For example, if you are a U.S. citizen and you marry an Indian citizen in Mumbai and you want to return to the U.S. with your new spouse to live permanently. In this situation, you would file for a K3 or a spouse visa. The K3 visa is referred to as a nonimmigrant visa.
The Immediate Relative IR-1 Visa
The immediate relative IR-1 visa is a family member visa. Family member visas are limited in number and come in a range of classifications – IR-1, IR-2, IR-3, IR-4, and IR-5. These different classifications refer to different degrees of relation with IR-1 being a spouse.
If you and your spouse have just married and are both non-U.S. citizens but you both wish to seek permanent residence in the U.S. In order to obtain permanent residency in the U.S. you must first be eligible to apply for your green card. Some of the things that may make you eligible for a green card include:
– Being sponsored by a family member in the United States
– Being sponsored by a company in the United States
– Being granted asylum or refugee status in the United States
– Being granted a green card as a “special immigrant”
– Being granted a green card as a human trafficking victim or crime victim
– Being granted a green card as a victim of abuse
– Being granted a green card through registry
– Being granted a green card through one of the other categories of green card eligibility
If you are eligible for a green card a U.S. citizen must file an immigration petition for you (your future employer or U.S. citizen family member for example). There are a few situations where you can file your own petition, but these situations are not common.
If your application is then approved and there are visas available in the category of residency that you are seeking, you must then file an application to register permanent residence with USCIS.
In these situations, you and your spouse may both seek a visa through sponsorship, for example, both of you may find possible employment and have employers who are willing to sponsor you. If only one of you can find sponsorship for a visa, it is possible for one of you to come to the U.S. and eventually become a citizen and then bring your spouse over to the U.S. on a spouse visa. This will require a long period of living away from each other, however, so it’s not always preferable.
How Can An Immigration Attorney Help You and Your Spouse
There are many ways that an immigration attorney can assist you and your spouse in your immigration process. The most significant thing that an immigration lawyer can do for you, however, is to ensure that you are filing for the correct type of visa, that you are filling in the correct forms, that the forms are being filled in properly, that the forms are being submitted by the necessary deadlines, and that they are filed in the correct manner. Any small misstep in this process can result in a delay in your immigration case and in some instances, it can also result in complete denial of residency or visa.
An immigration attorney can also help you to understand the immigration process. This is another significant service because most “average” people don’t understand the detailed procedures or unusual language involved in the legal system. Fortunately, attorneys do and they can help to translate this “legal speak” into plain English. Immigration attorneys also often have translators or are multi-lingual which can further help to overcome any misunderstandings that may take place as a result of English being your second language.
Lastly, an immigration lawyer can help you and your spouse in the event that any of your application processes are delayed or if your application is denied. In this case, your attorney can help you to see where things went wrong and help you to appeal the denial. Appealing denial without an attorney on your side is very unlikely to result in a change of opinion on your case.
Need the Help of an Immigration Lawyer After Marriage?
If you live in the Pasadena California area or are thinking about living here once you obtain the correct documentation and need the assistance of an attorney, Nelson and Associates can help! Just give us a call today at 626-683-3451 and let us know what we can do for you!