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How long does it take to get the immigrant visa through marriage to a green card holder?

New York, NY |

My wife is a green card holder since May 2009. We got married in Dec 2009 & then she applied for me in New York in July 2010. Still I am waiting for my immigrant visa although no required papers or formalities are left to submit or do. I am living out of USA but my wife visits USA every year & stays there not more than 2/3 months at each visit as we have decided to start staying there together permanently only after my visa gets approved. My questions are ------ 1) what is the approximate processing time to get an immigrant visa & in my case, when can I expect to get it? 2) As my wife have to stay most of the time out of USA so far, does it affect my application or visa processing time anyway?

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Attorney answers 3


I am assuming your spouse will be eligible for NATZ in May 2014. As soon as she becomes a USC she can notify the USCIS to change the category of your I-130 to the spouse of a USC. Your adjustment will then move forward.

I am also assuming that you initially entered the USA with inspection.



Thanks Mulder..... actually my wife isn't going to be eligible to be USC in 2014 as she has not yet started to meet the requirement of continuous residence without leaving US for 6 months or more. She is waiting for my visa getting approved after which we will start to permanently reside together in US. Also I have not yet entered USA. That's why, repeating my question ---- as my wife have to stay most of the time out of USA so far, does it affect my application or visa processing time anyway?


Go look at the monthly visa bulletin. This has the time frames you are looking for.


The other attorneys are correct ... it takes years and you may have to wait a few more.

Be careful with your words. Since your wife is a lawful permanent RESIDENT of the US ... she can't merely come to 'visit' the US ... this country must be the center of her life and livelihood .... known as her 'domicile'.

IF she isn't careful, they may cut up her greencard when she comes to the US on one of her trips.

Franco Capriotti - Senior Immigration Counsel

IMMIGRATION LAW PROFESSOR for 10 years -- LEGAL DISCLAIMER: This answer is offered for informational purposes only. It does not constitute an attorney-client relationship.

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