I hope that you receive your replacement green card soon.
Is your girlfriend legally in Canada?
How long have you been a permanent resident? If you have been a permanent resident for at least 5 years, then you would meet that requirement for US Citizenship. You should consult with an experienced immigration attorney about whether you should apply to become a US Citizen.
You could marry your girlfriend, so long as you comply with the regulations of the place where you want to marry (Canada, Mexico, etc.).
If you become a US Citizen, the process to help your girlfriend to come to the USA would be faster. You would have a couple of options.
If you remain a permanent resident, you could marry her and then begin the process to help her to come to the United States, but it will take a few years.
As you can see, there are many questions for you. I suggest that you consult with an experienced immigration attorney so that you have the best chance of success.
(734) 369-3131. This communication does not establish and attorney-client relationship with the Law Office of Michael Carlin PLLC or any individual member of the office. Confidential information should not be sent through this form.
There are many ways in which a foreign national can immigrate to the United States, including through a relative, an employer, the diversity visa lottery, and asylum. While marrying the spouse of a U.S. citizen is one of the fastest options and seemingly the most applicable in your circumstances, it may not be the only option. Before getting married, you should consult an immigration lawyer, whether myself or one of my colleagues, and fully discuss the consequences. If you appreciate the time spent preparing this answer, kindly consider marking it BEST ANSWER or HELPFUL. Good luck to you.
Dean P. Murray
The Murray Law Firm
560 Sylvan Avenue
Englewood Cliffs, NJ 07632
Mr. Murray's response is NOT legal advice and does NOT create an attorney-client relationship. You should NOT rely on this response. Mr. Murray's response was generated without conducting a full inquiry as would occur during a face to face attorney-client consultation. It is likely that the response above may be made less accurate, or become entirely inaccurate, as you, i.e. the questioner, disclose additional facts that should only be discussed during a private consultation with an attorney. I strongly recommend that you consult an attorney who is licensed to practice law in your state (or, in the case of immigration law, and attorney in ANY state), whereupon all relevant facts will be discussed. All responses posted by Mr. Murray on Avvo.com are intended as general information for the education of the public, and not for any specific individual.
I agree with my colleagues. If you and your girlfriend want to get married, then you can do so and then start the process of petitioning for her. If you are eligible to become a U.S. citizen, that would make the process go much faster. Before starting anything, you should consult with an immigration attorney to make sure there is nothing in her immigration history that would keep her from being able to come here as your wife. My office handles these types of cases in your area and would be willing to talk to you about your options if you are interested.
The information offered is general in nature and not meant to be relied upon as legal advice. No client-attorney relationship is created through this information. Please consult an attorney prior to making legal decisions.
If your girlfriend is in Canada legally, here are your options:
1. As a permanent resident you can marry your girlfriend, then file a petition to bring her to the U.S.
2. You can get your U.S. citizenship, then get engaged to your girlfriend and bring her to the U.S. as your fiancé
3. You can get your U.S. citizenship, then marry your girlfriend and bring her to the U.S. as your wife.
In most cases, option #2 will be fastest. However, there are many factors than can affect which option you choose, such as any criminal history you or your girlfriend may have.
My firm has extensive experience helping immigrants bring family members to the U.S. Please feel free to call or email to discuss further.
The Anwari Law Firm, PC