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I am an American citizen, I married my out of status boyfriend a couple weeks ago. Will he be banned if we leave the country?

Los Angeles, CA |

My now husband was out of status for a couple of years, f1 visa expired, before we married. We were told he has to apply for the green card in the country before he can even think about leaving, problem is, a family member is very sick and he needs to go to his home country. We would apply now but seeing as we know we will be out of the country for over three months, at the very least, we are worried he will lose the green card and thus out of thousands of dollars and time. Although him, in my opinion, being banned would be terrible.

- would he be banned for ten years automatically, once he leaves the u.s.?
-could we appeal the ban, assuming he gets one, from Japan
-can we apply for the green card in another country?

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Attorney answers 5


I don't fully understand what you mean by "banned." KIt is possible he can apply for his "green card" 9at the same time you file your petition) and have his biometrics for his Travel Document (allowing re-entry while his application to adjust status is pending; but you should review these dates for travel and the timing with an immigration attorney. It is also possible you can petition for his immigrant visa and he can apply for that visa from abroad; though he may have to apply for a waiver of inadmissibility--which is difficult to be granted. Again, you should consult with an immigration attorney.

I have worked with many clients who have need to travel abroad, yet doing so will cost them their opportunity to adjust status to permanent resident. The ned to be with the family is important when close relatives are ill. Yet, it could also mean forgoing the green card.

The person who posted this question, as well as anyone else who reads this response, should understand that the response is not, and should not be understood as, legal advice. Rather, it is legal information, based on the abbreviated facts presented. Immigration law is very complex, unfortunately, and immigration status adjudications are highly fact-dependent. The reader should retain an experienced immigration lawyer to analyze the facts specific to his/her particular situation to obtain “legal advice”; which this is not. Any answers offered on Avvo are of a general nature and informational only, and are not meant to create an attorney-client relationship.



We heard he will face a possible ten year ban if he were to leave the country without us applying here first. Thank you for your time.


Your husband should make a choice between visiting his sick relative abroad or applying for and obtaining a green card in less than six months. If he were to leave now, in all likelihood he wouldn't be able to come back for the next 10 years, married to a US citizen or not, given that there would be no real "hardship "to speak of with which to have a hardship waiver approved. USCIS and the Department of State repeated many times, to whoever wanted to hear, that "mere separation is not considered hardship "

Kindly be advised that the answer above is only general in nature cannot be construed as legal advice, given that not enough facts are known. It is your responsibility to retain a lawyer to analyze the facts specific to your particular situation in order to give you specific advice. Specific answers will require cognizance of all pertinent facts about your case. Any answers offered on Avvo are of a general nature only, and are not meant to create an attorney-client relationship.


It depends if he worked without authorization or USCIS made a finding he is out of status. Generally F1 students are admitted for"duration of status". There is no end date. So they accrue unlawful presence only as indicated above. There is no appeal from a correction application of the law, however there are waivers. His approved visa will be sent to the country where he lives.

The above is intended only as general information, and does not constitute legal advice. You must speak with an attorney to discuss your individual case.


I am sorry to hear about your family member. More information is needed to give a complete answer but, your husband will not be banned. However, he might have trouble gaining entry to the US. You should consult an attorney as soon as possible before making a decision either way.

This answer is not intended to replace a consultation with an attorney and does not create an attorney-client relationship.


This is a difficult choice because there is no easy answer. He may not be able to return if he leaves. If staying in the U.S. long term is important to him, get married and wait at least until he has travel permission to leave the U.S. Since so much is at stake, its worth paying an attorney for a consultation and getting all the information you need to make a decision.

Due to the nature of this forum, Attorney Maria J. Marty does not have all the information required to provide legal advice. Accordingly, her responses on Avvo are intended as general and not legal advice.

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