Conditional Green Card
If you have been married for less than two years, you will first receive a conditional green card. The conditional green card is valid for 2 years. Within the last 90 days prior to the expiration date of the conditional 2-year green card, you must file a petition to remove the I- 751. After that, you can get a permanent Green Card. The purpose of such a petition is to prove to the US Immigration Service that the marriage is not fictitious.
Please note that if the I-751 petition is not filed on time, then the conditional green card becomes invalid for the purpose of work, entry into the United States. Moreover, the holder of a conditional green card can be deported from the United States.
Who Submits I-751 Petition
Normally, the I-751 petition must be signed and filed jointly by both spouses. However, in certain cases an exception can be made:
- The marriage was entered into in good faith, but the spouse died.
- The marriage was entered into in good faith, but was subsequently terminated. In the event that the spouses are living separately or are in the process of divorce, but the marriage has not yet been dissolved, an exception cannot be made on this basis. In this case, USCIS will grant 87 days to send the divorce certificate. If it is not sent to USCIS within this period, then the acceptance of I-751 will be refused. In this case, the case will be transferred to the immigration court. Applicants who are in the process of divorce can file a joint I-751 petition, and if at the interview they can prove that the marriage was entered into in good faith, then the I-751 petition can be approved despite the fact that the spouses are in the process of divorce on moment of interview.
- The marriage was entered into in good faith, but the spouse or children were victims of domestic violence by a spouse, citizen or permanent resident of the United States.
Required Documents for Filing I-751 Petition
The list of documents required for filing the I-751 petition is specified in the USCIS instructions.
In addition, you must provide proof that you married in good faith. These documents must cover the period from the date of granting conditional resident status until the filing of Form I-751.
To prove good faith in the marriage, you can provide the following evidence (the list is not exhaustive):
– Debit, credit or investment account statements.
– Joint debt obligations: mortgages, loans, credits.
– Joint ownership of property: real estate, cars, etc.
– Documents confirming the payment of utility bills at the place of joint residence.
– Medical insurance and other insurance that lists both spouses.
– Documents confirming joint trips, pastime with family members.
– Joint photos.
– Birth certificates of common children.
– Testimony from people who know both spouses and can confirm the validity of the marriage.