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F1 visas married to permanent residence

Long Beach, CA |

If my brother (F1 visa) married with his girlfriend who has permanent green card not citizen yet, will his status change from F1 to us residence or have to stay F1 until his girlfriend become citizen?

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Attorney answers 4


He will have to remain in F-1 status until his visa priority date becomes current based upon the petition filed by his wife. If she remains a green card holder, this will take 2-5 years. If she naturalizes during that time, he will be able to apply for immediate adjustment. He should maintain his F-1 status until his adjustment based upon marriage is granted.


As the spouse of an LPR he is in a "Preference Category2A" which requires a waiting period of between 2-5 years and while he's waiting he must maintain status here and cannot reap any immediate immigration benefits from his LPR spouse. Once she naturalizes his status if elevated to that of an "Immediate Relative" with no annual statutory maximum immigrant visa number quota and he can then therefore file for his green card immediately. Its imperative he maintains his own independent F-1 or any other valid non=immigrant status at least until his wife becomes a naturalized citizen but better yet the entire time until she applies for his green card.


Better to get married only after she becomes a US citizen.

Please click the link at the very bottom for additional information.

Carl Shusterman, Esq.
Former INS Trial Attorney (1976-82)
Board Certified Immigration Attorney (1986 - Present)
Schedule a Legal Consultation - Telephonic or In-Person
600 Wilshire Blvd., Suite 1550
Los Angeles, CA 90017
(213) 394-4554 x0
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(213) 394-4554 x0 Mr. Shusterman is a former INS Trial Attorney (1976-82) with over 35 years of immigration experience. His response to your question is general in nature, as not all the facts are known to him. You should retain an attorney experienced in immigration law to review all the facts in your case in order to receive advice specific to your case. Mr. Shusterman's statement above does not create an attorney/client relationship.


He is not yet eligible for a green card, so if he plans to stay in the US, he needs to stay on some other status. The F-1 status is fine. Once his wife becomes a US citizen, or his priority date becomes current (whichever comes first), he will become immediately eligible for the green cad and can apply for adjustment of status by filing form I-485.

My response to your question does not create an attorney-client relationship, nor is this information to be construed as legal advice. If you would like to have a consultation or require representation, please contact our office directly: (512) 348-7966

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