If you are not a citizen of the United States, you know that marriage to a citizen may be a way for you to secure permanent resident status. However, there are still many challenges standing between you and your goal of legally and permanently residing in the United States, specifically Texas.
There will still be conditions on your status even after marrying a U.S. citizen. In fact, your resident status will be conditional if you were married less than two years at the time you originally obtained this status. The reason for this provision is to prevent individuals from avoiding the legal process of obtaining legal residency and using marriage as a means to enter and reside in the U.S.
Getting around immigration roadblocks
There are a few specific roadblocks that could be standing between you and your goal of becoming a legal resident. It may be possible to eventually remove the roadblocks between you and permanent resident status if one or more of the following apply to your situation:
- Your marriage to the U.S. citizen is still intact longer than two years. It may be possible for you to include any children on your application as well.
- Your marriage was legitimate and entered with good faith, but you are now a widow or widower.
- You are under the age of 18 but cannot be included on your parent's application for a specific reason.
- Your marriage was legitimate, but you or your child faced abuse, battery or other type of harm from your spouse who is a citizen or permanent resident.
In order to have conditions removed from your status, there are specific steps you must take. You will have to complete an I-751 form, and you can do with within a 90-day period of the second marriage anniversary. It is imperative that you do this as soon as possible, because after the window of time passes, you could lose your conditional status. This would mean you are subject to removal from the country.
The challenges ahead
Individuals seeking to legally reside in the United States face various challenges, and the road to citizenship and resident status is only becoming more difficult. Whether you would like to have conditions removed from your status or you are facing other immigration-related concerns, you would be wise to act quickly to learn more about your rights. You do not have to traverse any of the challenges ahead on your own.