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Citizenship through Marriage

Overview of the Application Process for U.S. Citizenship through Marriage

Procedure Name: Citizenship Application Process U.S. Citizenship through Marriage, Form I-130. Obtaining Green Card through Marriage, Form I-551
Purpose: The Citizenship of the United States can be obtained through Naturalization and Marriage with American national. The rules and requirements to become a U.S. citizen are different and actually more advantageous for people who are married to a U.S. citizen, there are preferences for the spouse of an American.
Eligible Applicants: A citizen of a foreign country and a U.S. national
Where to apply: Some American citizens living abroad, instead of filing the petition for their spouse in the United States, may apply and petition for the spouse at certain U.S. consulates abroad that have an USCIS immigration office.
 How to apply: Order and download this information guide online now to learn how to apply for U.S. Citizenship through Marriage.


Citizenship is the status given to a legal member of the country. It involves rights, duties and privileges. U.S. citizenship is usually acquired by birth when the child is born in the territory of the United States. This is provided under the 14th Amendment of the United States Constitution.

How to get a United States Citizenship?

The process of obtaining a U.S. Citizenship is very complicated. In general the first step to get a U.S. citizenship is to become a Legal Permanent Resident (LPR) and obtain a Green Card, however the waiting time for Green Card holders married to a U.S. citizen is shorter than the regular wait time for Green Card holders in general.

After having a Green Card individual can apply for Citizenship. The process by which a citizen of a foreign country becomes a United States citizen is called Naturalization. Order the U.S. Citizenship Application Guide for more information.

The process of naturalization can be difficult and it is important to have all the right and accurate information about how to apply, filing fees, all the requirements to apply and specific information for married couples.

How to Apply for a United States Green Card if Married to a U.S. Citizen?

As it has been mentioned before, the fist part of obtaining the U.S. Citizenship is getting the Green Card. A green card is an immigrant visa or also called legal permanent residence, and it allows you to live, work and study permanently in the United States with many rights as a permanent resident. Married couples with one American citizen and one non-American citizen in general have the right to apply for a green card for the non-American citizen to have the married couple living together in the United States of America. In most cases if the alien spouse has underage and unmarried children they are also eligible to apply for a green card as step children through their American Citizen step parent.

The immigration application for a green card or Lawful Permanent Residence through marriage is a process involving multiple steps. There are few different ways to apply and obtain a green card through marriage, but also several requirements, procedures, and application forms to file. Firstly, you have to submit support documentation to prove that you are eligible to apply for a green card though marriage. In terms of the application the American citizen will be sponsoring by filing a petition for his foreign national wife or husband. The petition can be filed in the U.S. or in some limited cases the green card through marriage petition can be filed abroad. There are several requirements for both the sponsor and the green card applicant. Once the petition for an immigrant visa is approved them there are many other steps in the process including apply for the actual immigrant visa at a U.S. consulate abroad, or if the foreign spouse is present inside the U.S. then it is possible to adjust status to change from a non-immigrant visa into an immigrant visa that will give the right to live in the U.S. and obtain a green card.

Consular Application for a Green Card Through Marriage or Adjustment of Status in the United States

Spouses of U.S. citizens that are currently in the United States with a legal status with another type of visa may be eligible to adjust status and change from their current non-immigrant status as a visa holder and become U.S. Legal Permanent Residents without having to leave the country. To learn more about the application process applying at a local U.S. consulate or inside the U.S. or how to adjust status please order this green card through marriage information package.

K1 fiancée fiancé visa and Conditional Green Card

The engaged couples that are not married yet can first apply first for a fiancée visa to travel to the U.S., and then get married in the U.S.

The couple that got married less than two years before receiving their immigrant visa as legal permanent residents will initially receive a green card valid for two years only and with conditions. 90 days before the green card (valid for two years) is expired the couple is supposed to apply together to remove the conditions on their green card. In order to remove the green card the couple should go to an interview and provide evidence showing that the marriage is legitimate. However if at the time of receiving the visa approval the marriage is already two years or longer, then the new immigrant will receive a valid green card valid for 10 years.

This page can be found on:

Information and Instructions about how to apply for the United States citizenship for spouses of a U.S. citizen: 

  • Can I become a U.S. citizen if I am married with a United Sates citizen?
  • For how long do we have to be married to apply for a green card or to apply to become a citizen?
  • Can I get married with an American citizen abroad, and still be eligible to receive a green card or citizenship?
  • How to apply for a fiancé or fiancée visa for my girlfriend or boyfriend to be able to travel to America?
  • What happens if we get divorced? Can I still apply for or keep my resident status, green card or citizenship?
  • What if my husband or wife died? Can I still keep or apply for my green card or citizenship?
  • Questions about children from previous marriages, can they travel with me to the US and become residents or citizens?
  • Information about citizenship application fees and official application forms to apply for the United States citizenship.

Green Card Marriage Package Application Forms that can be found using this Information Package

  • Petition for Alien Relative
  • Poverty Guidelines
  • Affidavit of Support under Section 213A of the Act
  • E-Notification of Application/Petition Acceptance
  • Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status
  • Petition for Alien Fiancé(e)
  • Choice of Address and Agent
  • Case status forms

U.S. Citizenship through Marriage
Find out the answer to several of your immigration questions about citizenship and marriage, including how to access official citizenship forms, application filing fees, and general official application information to become a U.S. citizen for the spouse of a U.S. citizen.

Disclaimer: We are not affiliated with the government, we are a private publisher of information guides. This product only includes instructions, it does not include filing fees, or any other charges to submit your application.