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How Long Does it Take to Get a Green Card After Marriage?

How Long Does it Take to Get a Green Card After Marriage - Law Office of Ghenadie Rusu

When love transcends borders, marriage doesn’t just unite two hearts, but also kicks off a journey towards the dream of a life together in the United States. One of the most pressing questions for binational couples is: how long does it take to get a green card after marriage? While the journey is rich with anticipation, it’s often fraught with questions and the need for careful planning.  As of January 2024, the processing time for a marriage green card is 9.3 months.

Understanding the Factors Affecting Processing Times

Understanding the Factors Affecting Processing Times - Law Office of Ghenadie Rusu
Pic Credit: https://www.usavisacounsel.com/

Here are some key elements that can influence how long it takes to get your green card after marriage:

  • Where you currently live: The processing timeline can differ depending on whether you’re applying from within the U.S. (adjustment of status) or from abroad (consular processing).
  • Current USCIS workload: The volume of applications USCIS is processing can affect overall waiting times.
  • Your specific case details: The complexity of your individual case, including any past immigration history, can impact processing speeds.

Reach out to us at Rusulaw.com, and let us navigate the details together.

Examining the Green Card Application Timeline

While the exact wait time can vary, here’s a general breakdown of the processing stages for a marriage-based green card:

  1. Form I-130 Petition Filing: Your U.S. citizen spouse files Form I-130, Petition for Alien Relative, to establish the legitimacy of your marriage. Processing times for this initial petition can range from 6 to 12 months.
  2. Concurrent Filing Option (Optional): If you are already in the U.S. legally, you can potentially file Form I-485, Application to Adjust Status, concurrently with Form I-130. This allows you to apply for permanent residency from within the U.S. and avoid consular processing abroad.
  3. Biometrics Appointment and Security Checks: Once USCIS receives your application, you’ll be scheduled for fingerprints, photos, and background checks.
  4. Interview (if required): In some cases, you and your spouse may be called for an interview to verify the bona fides (good faith) of your marriage.
  5. Green Card Approval: Upon successful application processing, you’ll receive your green card in the mail.

Current Processing Time Estimates (as of June 2024)

It’s important to note that processing times can fluctuate. Based on current USCIS data, the average processing time for a marriage-based green card can range from 9.3 months for applications filed from within the U.S. (adjustment of status) and 13.5 to 20.5 months for applications filed abroad (consular processing). These are just estimates, and the actual wait time for your case may be shorter or longer.

Need expert guidance on your Green Card application? Contact Rusulaw.com today!

Potential Delays and Variables

While how long does it take to get a green card after marriage is typically around 9 to 12 months, this can change due to various factors:

  • New policy updates or changes in immigration law.
  • Delays at USCIS or consular offices.
  • Administrative processing or a request for additional evidence.

Don’t let potential delays discourage you. Our expert attorneys at Rusulaw.com are here to expedite your application.

Cost Considerations

Costs also play a significant role in the green card application process:

  • Government filing fees total $3005 for spouses living in the United States or $1340 for those abroad.
  • Medical examination costs vary from roughly $200 to $500.

If you’re ready to begin your journey to marital residency in the U.S., get in touch with law Office of Ghenadie Rusu PLLC – where your love story meets our legal expertise.

Frequently Asked Question

How long after marriage can you get a green card?

The timeline to obtain a green card after marriage is after 2 years.

What is the current wait time for a green card?

Wait times for a marriage-based green card generally fall between 9.3 months

Can you stay in the US while waiting for a marriage green card?

Yes, if you have a valid visa, you can stay in the U.S. while your application for a marriage-based green card (adjustment of status) is being processed.

What is the fastest way to get a green card?

Employment-based (EB) visas are one of the fastest and most efficient ways to get a U.S. Green Card.

What is the shortest time to get a green card?

The shortest time often relates to immediate relative sponsorships, such as those by a U.S. citizen spouse, where the priority date is current. Processing can take as little as 9 to 12 months, but this is highly variable.

How much do I need to invest in the US to get a green card?

Under the EB-5 Investor Visa program, a foreign investor can gain a green card by investing a minimum of $1,800,000 (or $900,000) in a US business

Which US visa is easy to get?

Easiest visas to obtain are often visitor visas (B1/B2) for tourists and business visitors, but these do not offer a path to a green card.

Can you get a green card if you marry a green card holder?

Yes, spouses of green card holders can apply for a green card through a family preference category. 

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