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Can I marry my Cuban boyfriend and adjust my status in the US if he just got is green card?

Chicago, IL |

My Cuban boyfriend came to the US a year ago and he is applying for his green card now. We met in Mexico and have a 3 year relationship, we want to get married in the US but we are unsure if this is possible or not. I am Mexican visiting the US with a tourist visa and my I-94 expires in May/2013. Once we get married he wants to file a petition for me, should we get married in the US or Mexico?

Attorney Answers 6

Posted

Is your spouse applying for his green card under the Cuban Adjustment Act?

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Mark Robert Barr

Mark Robert Barr

Posted

If he is, then you can apply for your green card under the same law, after you have been physically present in the U.S. for one year. I'd recommend talking with an immigration attorney in Florida--they handle a lot of Cuban Adjustment Act cases. I'm in Denver, so I hardly ever see them.

Asker

Posted

Yes he is... he has been in parole for the last year. We lived together in Mexico and he decided to go to the US and get permanent residency under the Cuban Adjustment Act so I supported him. Very difficult decision I must say.

Mark Robert Barr

Mark Robert Barr

Posted

And you came to the U.S. in December? And you have been living with him in the U.S. since your arrival?

Asker

Posted

Yes and no... I am staying at my brother's place.

Mark Robert Barr

Mark Robert Barr

Posted

Well, that complicates things. It's my understanding that if your husband is getting, or has already obtained, a green card through the CAA, then you can get one too as long as you have been in the U.S. for one year following inspection and admission or parole, and have been living with your spouse. You might want to think about extending your tourist visa for another six months, marrying, and co-habitating with your fiancee. But, again, I'd recommend talking to a Florida attorney, who may have more practical experience than me.

Asker

Posted

Thank you!

Posted

It is much easier to marry in the U.S. while you are visiting than to marry in Mexico. Marriage is according to State law, so you can marry. At the end of your stay as a visitor, you should still depart the U.S. Once he obtains his green card he can petition you to immigrate from Mexico. The problem is that it will likely take more than 3 years to complete immigrant spouse visa processing for you because your future husband is not a U.S. citizen. There are few exceptions. Consider a private consultation with an attorney to set out an immigration plan. Kind regards, Allan

For more information, call (888) 483-0311. This information is general in nature and is not legal advice to be relied upon for any particular matter.

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Mark Robert Barr

Mark Robert Barr

Posted

If the husband was adjusting under the Cuban Adjustment Act, couldn't she just file an I-485 after the marriage, and after she was physically present in the U.S. for one year? It might not be a bad idea for her to extend the tourist visa so she is in status from May to December, but otherwise, I think that might be a more attractive option.

Posted

More information is needed as to the petitioner's current immigration status. I highly recommend hiring an immigration lawyer for this process.

Contact immigration attorney Gintare Grigaite, Esq. at 201-471-7989, located in New York and New Jersey. Contact immigration attorney Gintare Grigaite, Esq. for a free consultation about new Immigration Reform policies. Answers on AVVO do not constitute legal advice and do not form attorney-client relationship. Always consult an attorney for a legal advice.

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Posted

You can marry whoever you want, Cuban or not. Yes, you can adjust status, once your husband files for you, get his petition approved and your priority date becomes current. All this time, which is several years, you will have to maintain your valid nonimmigrant status or the answer will automatically change to no, you cannot adjust.

NYC EXPERIENCED IMMIGRATION ATTORNEYS www.myattorneyusa.com; email: info@myattorneyusa.com; Phone: (866) 456-­8654; Fax: 212-964-0440; Cell: 212-202-0325. The information contained in this answer is provided for informational purposes only, and should not be construed as legal advice on any subject matter.

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Mark Robert Barr

Mark Robert Barr

Posted

But what if the husband is adjusting under the Cuban Adjustment Act?

Mark Robert Barr

Mark Robert Barr

Posted

Couldn't she just get married in the U.S., and then file for adjustment (no petiton needed) after she was in the U.S. for one year? (she might want to extend her tourist visa to stay in status--but still, a more attractive option than going through the I-130 and consular processing).

Alexander Joseph Segal

Alexander Joseph Segal

Posted

True.

Posted

I agree with my colleagues in a lot of respects. First, most often you will not have an issue getting married as long as there is no issue based on family law in the state you reside. Second, if your future husband gets his green card and files for you then your visa petition will be in what is referred to as a "family preference" category, which means there is going to be a wait for your visa to be available to apply for your green card and you can only apply in the U.S. if you have maintained lawful status throughout the entire time you were here. Third, there are a lot of changes to your case if your husband were to become a U.S. citizen, but most likely that will take 5 years to occur and, unless, there are options for employment based visas for you then you will have to return to Mexico. Bottom line, this is going to be a long term process and it's best if you consult with an attorney who can address the long term case in a long term manner

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Mark Robert Barr

Mark Robert Barr

Posted

But it sounds like the husband is getting his green card through the Cuban Adjustment Act, which will allow her to do the same (with no need for a petition, or worry about priority dates, etc.) once she is residing with her husband and physically present in the U.S. for a year.

Asker

Posted

moving in with him is no problem at all since we want to get married and we used to lived together in Mexico, however how can I be legally present in the U.S. for a year without being out of status?

Mark Robert Barr

Mark Robert Barr

Posted

Apply to extend your tourist visa for another six months.

Mark Robert Barr

Mark Robert Barr

Posted

Understand, I don't believe you need to be in status at the time you file to adjust your status as the spouse of someone who adjusted under the Cuban Adjustment Act.

Mark Robert Barr

Mark Robert Barr

Posted

So, extending your status would be for your own comfort and security. Not doing so wouldn't (I believe) disqualify you for eligibilty to adjust under the CAA.

Mark Robert Barr

Mark Robert Barr

Posted

The same think would NOT be true, for example, if your husband filed an I-130 for you, and you later tried to adjust as the spouse of a regular LPR. In that case, you would have to be in status at the time you sought adjustment.

Francisco Javier Alvillar

Francisco Javier Alvillar

Posted

Good catch Mark. This is true, here is the criteria for what Mark referred to: Family Member of Cuban Native or Citizen Applying Under the CAA The spouse and child(ren) of an individual applying for a green card under the CAA may also apply for benefits under the CAA regardless of their country of citizenship or place of birth, if: The relationship continues to exist until the dependent spouse or child receives a green card They are residing with the individual applying for a green card under the CAA in the United States They apply for a green card under the Cuban Adjustment Act They are eligible to receive an immigrant visa They are otherwise admissible to the United States for such permanent residence

Asker

Posted

Thank you both (specially Mark) for your help and the information provided.

Posted

More information is needed ... such as how your boyfriend qualifies for a greencard.

Meet with an attorney for personal, and private, advice.

PROFESSOR OF IMMIGRATION LAW for over 10 years -- This blog posting is offered for informational purposes only. It does not constitute an attorney-client relationship. Also, keep in mind that this is an INTERNET BLOG. You should not rely on anything you read here to make decisions which impact on your life. Meet with an attorney, via Skype, or in person, to obtain competent personal and professional guidance.

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