If you came to the United States on a marriage visa, your permanent resident status is conditional if you were married less than two years on the day you were given permanent resident status. Conditional status means that your permanent resident status will not be immediately granted until you can prove it is not a “fake” marriage to get a Green Card.
To remove the conditions of your Green Card you have to prove you did not commit immigration fraud to bypass immigration laws. You and your spouse can apply together to remove the conditional status of your residence by filing an I-751 Petition to Remove Conditions on Residence, with U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). You must apply “during the 90 days before your second anniversary as a conditional resident.”
A non-citizen spouse is eligible to apply for removal of conditions if:
- They are married to the same permanent resident or U.S. citizen 2 years after being granted conditional status
- They are a child and have a valid reason that they weren’t included in their parents’ application
- The marriage was entered into in good faith but resulted in a divorce or annulment
- The marriage was entered into in good faith, but the non-citizen spouse (or their child) then became subject to domestic violence or spousal abuse by the U.S. citizen spouse
- Termination of the current residency status would cause extreme hardship to the applicant
Immigration officials will require different types of proof for each of these eligibility requirements, such as a marriage license, divorce documentation or proof of abuse, as well as application fees.
If you are now widowed, divorced, or abused and but you entered your marriage in good faith, you can apply to waive the joint filing requirement. You can apply separately to remove the conditions of your residency and will be required to provide evidence of your married status.
Removal of Conditions petitions typically take 12 or more months to be approved and may require applying for an extension. During this time you will be required to submit documentation, biometrics and have interviews with USCIS officials before being granted a 10 year Green Card.
If your marriage is declared fraudulent and your petition is denied, you will be scheduled for removal and deportation. If you are denied removal of conditions, you can appeal for a review of your petition.
If you are or were married to a US citizen and received a marriage visa with conditional status, contact the Immigration Simplified attorneys to advise you on your removal of conditions petition. Please contact our office or call us at (312) 883-9944.
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