Each year, over 400,000 citizens of the United States marry foreign-born persons and petition for them to obtain permanent residence in the U.S. through the marriage green card process. Spouses of U.S. citizens are considered “immediate relatives” under the immigration laws and are exempt from all numerical quota limitations.
In order to bring your spouse (husband or wife) to live in the United States as a permanent resident (green card holder), you must be either a U.S. citizen or permanent resident.
How to Apply for a Marriage Green Card
If you are a U.S. citizen, you can apply for a green card for your husband or wife by filing Form I-130, Petition for Alien Relative. If your spouse has entered the U.S. lawfully, you may file Form I-485, Application to Register Permanent Residence or to Adjust Status, at the same time. If your spouse is outside the U.S., you may file Form I-130. When the Form I-130 is approved, it will be sent for consular processing and the consulate or embassy will provide notification and processing information.
If you are a lawful permanent resident, you should apply for a marriage green card for your spouse by filing Form I-130. After a visa number becomes available, your spouse may apply to adjust status to permanent residency using Form I-485 if he or she has been lawfully admitted to the U.S. If your spouse is outside the U.S., when Form I-130 is approved and a visa is available it will be sent for consular processing at the U.S. embassy or consulate in your spouse’s country of residence.
Our immigration lawyer prepares marriage green card applications for clients worldwide. To start your marriage green card process today, schedule a consultation.