Removing Conditions on a Marriage Green Card
If you have been married for less than 2 years at the time that your visa is approved, your green card will be “conditional.” This means that it will expire in 2 years instead of the usual 10 years. Spouses with conditional green cards will need to go through an additional process to “remove conditions” and secure non-conditional permanent residency.
You will need to jointly petition with your U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident spouse to remove conditions in the 90-day window before your conditional green card is set to expire. Timing is paramount: Your application will likely be rejected if it is filed too early or late.
To remove conditions, you will need to once again convince USCIS that your marriage is genuine. This will involve submitting additional evidence that shows how your relationship has continued and evolved over the preceding 2 years. Many will need to participate in another in-person interview at a local USCIS office.
If you get divorced while your green card is still conditional, you may still be able to successfully remove conditions. However, you will be placed under extreme scrutiny and will need to prove that you entered the marriage in good faith. Conditional residents can also potentially file to remove conditions without the cooperation of their spouse if they have suffered abuse or if their spouse has passed away.
Removing conditions is extremely important. Failing to remove conditions will result in your green card expiring, at which point you will begin to accrue unlawful presence in the United States. If you accumulate too much unlawful presence, you will be unable to access immigration benefits for several years or more. You may also be targeted for deportation.
Our Washington D.C. marriage green card lawyer at Law Group International can help ensure that your Petition to Remove Conditions is appropriately timed and filed. We can represent you in all communications with USCIS and assist you in overcoming any obstacles that might arise throughout the marriage visa process.