As a citizen or permanent legal resident, you can bring your spouse to the United States by applying for a marriage-based green card. A green card grants your spouse the right to legally live in the United States.
The process of obtaining a green card based on marriage can be complex and requires several varieties of documentation. To help your spouse get legal residency in the United States, you should understand the requirements for a marriage-based green card.
Proving marital status
First, you must show that your marriage is valid to the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services. Usually, your marriage certificate is the primary legal proof of your marital status.
It is also helpful to have evidence of shared finances. This documentation can include joint bank statements, leases, mortgages and utility bills you both pay.
Photos of you together, especially at important events, can help show your relationship is genuine. Letters and bills sent to both of you at the same address are also useful. Having friends and family write statements about your marriage can significantly help your case.
Obtaining a green card requires more than simply proving your marriage. You and your spouse need to fill out several important forms before they can become a permanent resident.
If you are a U.S. citizen or permanent resident, you should file Form I-130 to confirm your relationship status. Your spouse should fill out Form I-485 when applying for residency as well. You also have to show that your spouse has legally entered the country. Including a copy of their passport and an I-94 travel record in your application is important. A medical report from an approved doctor is also necessary to obtain legal residency.
To help your spouse become a resident and citizen, you should both understand the requirements and carefully gather the necessary documents. Being well-prepared and detail-oriented can make a major difference in the green card application process.