⚖️ Hi all! I am New York based immigration attorney Marina Shepelsky. I have been practicing immigration law for 20 years. If you’re looking for an immigration lawyer, we take clients from all 50 states in the US, because technology lets us do so today!
There has been breaking news for people who are filing for a 10-year green card after having a two-year green card through a marriage, to a US citizen or Green Card holder. For their kids, there’s a change that just took place. Before I lead into the latest news from USCIS, I invite you to become our follower. Please subscribe to our YouTube channel here, and give us a like on Facebook for all the information you need on immigration in America.
❓ What is a removal of condition?
📝People hate it when immigration attorneys talk about form numbers and complicated, legal means for things that they don’t even understand, and I totally get it. Sometimes, when I listen to myself or a colleague talk and I’m thinking, will the client really understand what we are saying, a lot of times the answer is no, they will not.
So, let’s talk about the process for I-751, the removal of conditions.
🤵👰 Imagine (or maybe you actually are are) you’re married to a US citizen and you file for a Green Card through that marriage. If your interview is on a date that’s less than two years from the date you got married, you will get a two-year temporary, conditional Green Card.
The legal term is that you have conditional status. Conditional means your status depends on you staying married to the same person for two years. Congress made this law that if the person marries that you a citizen and stays married to them for two years, that’s proof that this marriage is real and it’s going to last, that person deserves a 10-year Green Card.
🗂 Just before the two-year anniversary of your Green Card (we know the date by actually looking at your green card, which says “Resident Since XX/XX/XXXX” on the bottom. Let’s say you were a resident from January 1st, 2020. 90 days before January 1st 2022, which would be, in October/November, you would have to file for something called removal of conditions. This means you have to send in the I-751 processing form for removal of conditions on your lawful permanent residence.
In simple language when you file for a 10-year green card, 90 days before your two-year green card expires prior to this date, USCIS would send you a receipt notice and that received notice would say, you’re automatically extended your two-year status. After 18 more months, you could use this letter for traveling for your job as proof of your Green Card status, up to 18 months from the date you got your I-751 petition accepted by USCIS for processing. Yes, you can travel with the extension letter.
📑The latest news says that USCIS extends evidence of status for conditional permanent residence to 24 months with pending form I-751. What does that mean? It means that you are no longer getting an 18-month automatic extension from the date you file for the I-751.
Today’s big news is that it’s going to be now 24 months of extension time automatically, anytime you file for a 10-year green card through marriage to a US citizen.
You’re going to get a whole two years, a 24-month extension from the time you file your petition to get the 10 year green card. In 2021, USCIS has been extremely delayed with the I-751 forms, which is why there is a delay and lengthened extension process. Due to COVID, have been calling USCIS, writing them, making online inquiries nonstop because no one was able to get their Green Card in 18 months. In reality, it took between two and a half to three and a half years for almost everyone. So now USCIS decides to face reality and give people a much longer extension to deal with the delays.
❓ How does the USCIS I-751 extension affect my Green Card status?
When you get married to a US citizen, you’re going to have to stay married to them for at least four years or more to get your Green Card. It’s not a two-year commitment plus few more months to get the Green Card. It’s actually two years plus another two years.
🇺🇸 It takes even longer to get the 10-year Green Card. The good news is that I have had a lot of clients who are not even getting interviewed for the 10-year green card, because we do a really good job showing that the people who are in this marriage for love and to create a family together and not just for a Green Card. We prepare the case well by including all the proof of the marriage and dating and whatever else. We provide pictures of different people with kids signing and labeling each picture, explaining how this picture proves that the couple was together and being a family in the community.
We include all the joint taxes, bills, membership cards and credit card statements. We show evidence of trips taken together. We can provide letters from friends and family like wedding invitations, birthdays, thank you cards. We need to provide proof that people are living together for this entire time and have actually been in a marriage together with at least three witness letters that can prove with details, what these people do together as a couple in their community.
☝ If you have a good case for a Green Card through marriage, you’re not even going to have an interview because if you prepare for it really well with paperwork showing that the marriage is real, the card will just magically come by mail with a welcome to United States notice and a congratulation notice.
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