How to Bring a Spouse to the USA?

How long does it take to bring my spouse to the United States? This is a common concern among American citizens and legal permanent residents who marry foreign nationals.

How to Bring a Spouse to the USA?

Most people are aware that a citizen or lawful permanent resident (a “green card holder”) can sponsor their spouse for a green card and bring them to the country. How long the procedure takes will depend on your specific situation, which we shall go into depth about on this page.

In this section, we’ll offer you an overview of the procedure, outlining the forms you must fill out and the typical timeframes for each stage.

Note that this page’s information is for anyone who is:

  • a citizen or lawful permanent resident of the United States
  • At the moment in the United States
  • already wed to their spouse, who is still outside of the US.

Only a U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident can get a green card for their spouse; however, holders of several other types of visas and work permits may be able to bring a spouse to the country.

The procedure is different if you are already married but living outside of the United States, or if you are engaged but not yet married. In addition to submitting the documents outlined above, if your husband is currently present in the country with you, you will also need to file for a change of status.

You should schedule a consultation with Manji Law if you are unsure of how to proceed.

Steps In Applying for Green Card for Spouse

The immigration procedure still requires a number of forms and goes through several stages, despite the United States government’s best efforts to shorten it. Following directions precisely and exercising patience and perseverance are essential. A knowledgeable immigration lawyer can guarantee that your case is handled as efficiently and quickly as feasible.

The spouse who is a U.S. citizen or green card holder is referred to as the petitioner in this discussion and on any immigration paperwork you will fill out. The beneficiary is the spouse who will immigrate and obtain their own green card.
Depending on whether the petitioner is a citizen or a lawful permanent resident, there are various differences in the procedures for filing for an immigrant visa and a green card.

U.S. Citizen Applying for Spouse Green Card

The steps you will take if you are a citizen of the United States are as follows:

  1. Forms I-130 (Petition for Alien Relative) and I-130A (Supplemental Information for Spouse Beneficiary) should be completed and sent to US Citizenship and Immigration Services together with any necessary supporting materials and filing fees (USCIS).
  2. Once the application is accepted, send your spouse’s visa application to the National Visa Center (NVC).
  3. Your case will be processed by the NVC and sent to the embassy or consulate that is most convenient for your spouse, who will then be scheduled for an interview.
  4. Your spouse gives papers to be examined and responds to inquiries during the interview. The embassy or consulate issues an immigration visa if it is granted.
  5. To visit the United States, your spouse has six months. Once they arrive, they can enter the nation and join you by presenting their identification and visa at the point of entry.
  6. A few weeks later, your spouse’s green card shows up in the mail.
  7. Your spouse’s green card is conditional and expires after two years if you’ve been married for less than two years. They have 90 days before their conditional card expires to submit a petition for a permanent green card.

Permanent Resident Applying Process for US Green Card for Foreign Spouse

These are the measures to take if you are a legal permanent resident of the United States:

  1. Forms I-130 (Petition for Alien Relative) and I-130A (Supplemental Information for Spouse Beneficiary) should be completed and sent to US Citizenship and Immigration Services together with any necessary supporting materials and filing fees (USCIS).
  2. The spouse gets added to the immigration visa waiting list when the petition is approved. Their priority date for a visa is the day the petition was initially filed. The priority date must first become current before the visa application may be submitted. The current priority dates for that month are listed in the U.S. State Department Visa Bulletin, which is published on a monthly basis.
  3. Application for a visa should be sent to the National Visa Center once the priority date becomes current (NVC).
  4. Your case will be processed by the NVC and sent to the embassy or consulate that is most convenient for your spouse, who will then be scheduled for an interview.
  5. Your spouse gives papers to be examined and responds to inquiries during the interview. The embassy or consulate issues an immigration visa if it is granted.
  6. To visit the United States, your spouse has six months. Once they arrive, they can enter the nation and join you by presenting their identification and visa at the point of entry.
  7. A few weeks later, your spouse’s green card shows up in the mail.\
  8. Your spouse’s green card is conditional and expires after two years if you’ve been married for less than two years. They have 90 days before their conditional card expires to submit a petition for a permanent green card.

The completion of the citizenship procedure can expedite the immigration process for your spouse if you currently hold a green card and are therefore eligible for citizenship. This is because your spouse won’t have to wait for a visa to become available. An Atlanta immigration lawyer can give you guidance during this procedure.