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What Is The Process For Marrying A Non-U.S. Citizen?

Are you in love with someone from another country? Planning to tie the knot and begin a life together? That’s wonderful! But as with every marriage, there are a quantity of additional steps to take if your partner is a non-U.S. citizen. Don’t fear, though – on this article, we’ll walk you through the method, step-by-step, in easy language that anyone can understand.

Getting Started: Understanding the Basics

Before we delve into the nitty-gritty details, let’s start with the fundamentals. Marrying a non-U.S. citizen includes a quantity of further steps to make sure that your partner can legally reside in the United States. These steps embody applying for a marriage-based green card, also referred to as a everlasting residency card. Once your partner obtains this card, they may have the legal right to stay and work in the U.S.

It’s price noting that the process can vary barely depending on whether or not your spouse is already in the united states or still dwelling overseas. However, for the purposes of this text, we’ll give consideration to the general process that applies to most couples.

Step 1: Get Married

The first step in marrying a non-U.S. citizen is, in fact, getting married! Before you can start the immigration process, you should have a legally recognized marriage. This means going by way of the necessary steps according to the legal guidelines of the nation or state where the wedding will happen.

Step 2: File an Immigrant Petition

Once you’re happily married, it’s time to start the official immigration course of. The next step is to file an immigrant petition, specifically the Form I-130, Petition for Alien Relative. This kind establishes the connection between you (the U.S. citizen) and your spouse (the non-U.S. citizen) and proves that you’ve a real marriage.

To file the Form I-130, you may need to supply supporting paperwork such as your marriage certificate, proof of your U.S. citizenship, and any relevant evidence of your relationship, like photos or joint checking account statements.

Step three: Await Approval and Priority Date

After you’ve got submitted the Form I-130, you’ll have to wait for it to be approved. The processing time can range, so be patient. Once accredited, your partner shall be assigned a priority date. The precedence date is essential as a outcome of it determines when your spouse can begin the ultimate step of the immigration course of.

Step four: File the Adjustment of Status Application or Consular Processing

Now that your partner’s priority date is present, it is time to choose between two paths: adjustment of status or consular processing.

If your partner is already in the us on a sound visa, you presumably can select the adjustment of standing route. This means you will file the Form I-485, Application to Adjust Status, with the united states Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). This type is the place your spouse officially applies for his or her green card.

If your spouse is residing exterior the us or ineligible for adjustment of status, you may need to undergo consular processing. This includes making use of for an immigrant visa by way of the united states Department of State. Once permitted, your spouse can proceed with the ultimate step.

Step 5: Attend the Interview and Submit Required Documents

Regardless of whether or not you choose adjustment of standing or consular processing, the subsequent step is attending an interview. If you are in the united states, the interview takes place at a USCIS area office. If you’re overseas, it will be at a U.S. Embassy or Consulate.

During the interview, a USCIS officer or consular officer will ask questions about your relationship and request supporting documents. These paperwork may embrace medical examinations, police clearances, and monetary proof to reveal that you can assist your spouse.

Step 6: Await the Decision

After the interview and submission of required paperwork, you’ll have to wait for a decision. The wait time can range, however usually, you can anticipate to pay attention to again within a couple of months.

If everything goes properly, your partner will be granted the marriage-based green card, permitting them to stay and work legally in the us Congratulations! It’s time to begin your new life together.

Additional Considerations

While we have covered the principle steps concerned in marrying a non-U.S. citizen, it is important to keep a couple of additional considerations in thoughts:

  • Legal Assistance: The immigration course of could be complicated, so it may be helpful to hunt legal assistance from an immigration lawyer or respected immigration service.
  • Affidavit of Support: As the sponsoring U.S. citizen, you will have to submit an Affidavit of Support, proving you could financially help your spouse. This ensures that your spouse won’t turn into a public cost.
  • Conditional Green Card: If your marriage is less than two years old on the time your partner is approved for a green card, they’ll receive a conditional green card that is legitimate for two years. After two years, you must apply for the removing of these circumstances and acquire a permanent green card.


Marrying a non-U.S. citizen could require a number of additional steps, however do not let that discourage you. With correct understanding and preparation, the process could be manageable. Remember to file the required varieties, attend interviews, and provide the required paperwork. And most importantly, get pleasure from this thrilling chapter of your life together. Love is conscious of no boundaries, and with endurance and dedication, you probably can construct a future with the one you love, regardless of their nationality. Happy marriage planning!


  1. What are the basic requirements for marrying a non-US citizen?
    To marry a non-US citizen, both events should meet the authorized necessities for marriage in their respective nation or state. Additionally, the non-US citizen might have a legitimate visa to enter the US legally. It’s essential to analysis and comply with the specific marriage and immigration laws of your jurisdiction before proceeding.

  2. Can a non-US citizen get married within the United States?
    Yes, a non-US citizen can get married within the United States. However, it is essential to make sure they’ve the suitable legal documentation to enter the country and follow the marriage laws of the specific state where the wedding will happen. Some states might have further requirements, so it’s important to examine with the local marriage licensing workplace for correct data.

  3. Do I need a fiancé(e) visa to marry a non-US citizen?
    If you intend to marry a non-US citizen contained in the United States, you sometimes don’t need a fiancé(e) visa. Instead, the non-US citizen can enter the nation with a tourist visa or under the visa waiver program if they’re from an eligible nation. However, once married, it is essential to start the process of adjusting their standing to turn out to be a lawful everlasting resident (Green Card holder) to make sure their legal standing within the US.

  4. What is the method to regulate the standing of a non-US citizen spouse?
    To modify the standing of a non-US citizen spouse, no matter where the marriage takes place, the US citizen spouse must file Form I-130, Petition for Alien Relative, on behalf of their non-US citizen partner. Once the petition is accredited, the non-US citizen partner can apply for a Green Card by submitting Form I-485, Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status. This course of requires offering proof of the bona fide nature of the marriage, monetary data, medical examination results, and more.

  5. Can a non-US citizen spouse work within the United States while waiting for his or her Green Card?
    Yes, a non-US citizen partner can apply for a piece allow, often known as an Employment Authorization Document (EAD), while ready for his or her Green Card. This requires submitting Form I-765, Application for Employment Authorization, concurrently with the applying to regulate status. Once the EAD is accredited, the non-US citizen partner can legally work within the United States until they obtain their Green Card or their EAD expires.