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The Immigration Status after Married with an American Citizen


I have overstayed a U.S. visa. I would like to know what will be my immigration status if I get married to an American citizen? and what are the procedures and Forms required for me to get the US Permanent Residency?


While most people in your case are not eligible to adjust status in United States, and must apply for their visa through consular processing in their home country, your marriage to a U.S. citizen basically cancels out the issue, and you can apply to adjust status no matter how long you were out of status.

In fact, you will be getting benefits by doing so, because if you chose to apply through consular processing, and your period of unlawful presence in the U.S. was 180 days or more, you would be subject to the time bars on your return.

If you used a visa to come to the U.S. with the existing intention to apply for a marriage-based green card, you have committed visa fraud, and may be denied the green card on that basis. It is far better if you were not yet married when you entered the U.S. and only met your spouse or decided to get married later.

If you marry to a U.S. citizen, you will be immediately eligible to receive a temporary Green Card, not subject to waiting quotas. It may take several months for the paper work to be processed. You will also receive the employment authorization (EAD) after  filing Form I-485 Adjustment of Status. Your first step is to file Form I-130. You can also file Form I-485 with Form I-130 simultaneously.




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