Some people say that marrying a U.S. citizen is the "fast track" to becoming a legal resident of this country. Yet an immigrant must usually prove that his or her marriage is legitimate before getting a green card for conditional residency or permanent residency.
FindLaw states that immigrants who apply for a green card based on their marriage to a resident of the United States will have to attend a marriage interview as part of their application. The interview is usually conducted within six months to a year from the time the green card application is filed. Preparation for this interview is important because the "wrong answers" can lead to the denial of green card application.
Green card applicants should bring documentation to their interview to prove that the marriage is legal and legitimate. Along with a marriage certificate, documentation can include wedding photographs, cards, tax returns, bank account statements, or other items. If the applicant has been married to their spouse for two or more years, he or she should qualify for permanent residency. If the marriage has lasted for less than two years, the green card applicant can receive the stamp for conditional residence.
Immigrants who were married to a U.S. citizen while they were in the country on a B-2 visitor's visa can become legal residents of the United States, even after their visa expires, as soon as they file for the green card through marriage application. In this case, the green card marriage interview does not have to be completed before obtaining legal status.
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