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Will I be hold liable if I assist my spouse in getting green card once we decide to divorce?

Newark, NJ |

I sponsored my spouse in green card application some time ago. Now we are in divorce and already signed a Martial Settlement Agreement but have not filed for divorce yet. The interview date is coming. If I go to the interview with her but do not tell any lies during the interview, and wait until she gets the card before file for divorce, will I have any liability? Many thanks!

This is not a marriage fraud. We did not get married for green card. We have married for 3+ years. It happens that the marriage does not work and I still want to help her in getting green card. Will I have any problem because of helping her?

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Attorney answers 9

Posted

Held liable for for what? The biggest risk is the denial of a the green card and possibly an accusation of marriage fraud. You are making a HUGE mistake if you go through with the interview without consulting with a lawyer. You need to give the lawyer time to prepare, as well, so do not wait until right before the interview. Find someone ASAP.

Posted

The standard is whether or not your marriage was bona fide when you entered into it. You should both speak to an attorney and explain the situation before your interview.

Posted

I agree with my colleagues. Have a discussion with an immigration attorney as soon as possible.

Alexus P. Sham alexuspshamesq@gmail.com (917) 498-9009. The above information is only general in nature and does not constitute legal advice. It does not create an attorney-client relationship.

Posted

I agree with Eric. You're making a grave mistake. Speak with any competent, experienced immigration attorney.

VOSBIKIAN & VOSBIKIAN, L.L.C. (856) 755-1400, e-mail: ssvosbikian@voslaw.com - Offices in Atlantic City, Cherry Hill, Newark, and Trenton, NJ. Please consult with a licensed immigration professional to provide you with a thorough legal advice. This response is not a substitute for specific legal advice and it should not be construed to create an attorney-client relationship. Please visit and share this site: www.voslaw.com

Posted

I agree with my colleagues. Please meet with an experienced immigration attorney prior to doing what you are intending.

Posted

Liable? As in $10,000 fine and/or time in jail for committing marriage fraud on the US government?

Quite possibly. Talk to a lawyer.

PROFESSOR OF IMMIGRATION LAW for over 10 years -- franco@capriotti.com -- www.capriotti.com -- 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.

Asker

Posted

Dear Prof. Capriotti, This is not a marriage fraud. We did not get married for green card. We have married for 3+ years. It happens that the marriage does not work and I still want to help her in getting green card. Will I have any problem because of helping her?

Alexander M. Ivakhnenko

Alexander M. Ivakhnenko

Posted

No matter how you try to justify your rational, Counsel Capriotti is 1005 correct-this will constitute a federal crime of fraud.

F. J. Capriotti III

F. J. Capriotti III

Posted

Doe she already have the 2 year conditional greencard? If so, get a divorce and write a great affidavit ... with the help of a lawyer. If she doesn't have conditional status, and you've been married for 3 years, there must be a reason for your delay ... meet with an attorney.

Alexander M. Ivakhnenko

Alexander M. Ivakhnenko

Posted

I completely concur with that opinion.

Asker

Posted

Dear Prof. Capriotti, The reason for delay is I am a green card holder, instead of a citizen. So there is a priority date. We waited for two years and now the priority date is current.

F. J. Capriotti III

F. J. Capriotti III

Posted

Now that the date is current .... you now need a lawyer. Sure, the original marriage and original papers were 'real and honest' but ... your posting implies that the marriage is no longer viable. Plus, if this is a FB-2A case .. you really need a lawyer to make sure she's been 100% legal in the US the whole time she's been here.

Asker

Posted

Thank you, Professor.

Posted

No.

Under the rules governing the conduct of attorneys in New York it may be necessary to remind you that this answer could be considered attorney advertising.

Alexander M. Ivakhnenko

Alexander M. Ivakhnenko

Posted

I respectfully disagree, as the above elements indicate a federal crime if acted upon.

Posted

Yes. it is called a federal crime of marriage fraud. I strongly recommend deleting your initial posting as potentially incriminating if you decide to proceed.

DISCLAIMER The answer given above by the lawyer serves for educational purposes only and provides general information and a basic understanding of the applicable law. Take notice that the answer above does not create an attorney-client relationship as this website is not intended to provide anyone a specific legal advice. Anyone using the site expressly consents that there is no attorney client privilege between any person and any attorney responding. Further take notice that the site should not be used as a crude substitute for any professional and competent legal advice by a licensed professional attorney in the applicable jurisdiction. The attorney above attempted to provide competent professional information, however, the law and its applications may change frequently and vary greatly from other U.S. jurisdictions and locales. Therefore, any information and materials provided above are general in nature, and may not apply to specific factual and legal circumstances related to one's personal legal issues. Contact an experienced lawyer admitted to practice in your State under an attorney-client privilege to further receive a competent legal advice before making any important decisions about your particular legal issue. For further inquiries please contact: Attorney Alexander Ivakhnenko 1021 West Adams, 102, Chicago, Illinois 60607 773-562-8602 http://alexanderivakhnenko.com

Posted

I agree with my colleagues on the care you should take to avoid criminal and civil liabilities regarding marriage fraud. Consult an experienced immigration attorney because you want to stay out of those troubles. You asked a question about liability, so I will focus on that. Unless certain exceptions are met, someone with a petition like yours typically files an I-864 affidavit of support (a contract you make with the US government). You agree in that form to be liable and maintain the immigrant at 125% of the federal poverty level for several years . In addition to an immigration attorney, you should consider taking your I-864 and get an additional assessment from a family law attorney to help you assess your liability.

The statement above is general in nature and does not constitute legal advice, as not all the facts are known. You should retain an attorney to review all the facts specific to your case in order to receive advise specific to your case. The statement above does not create an attorney/client relationship. Answers on Avvo can only be general ones, as specific answers would require knowledge of all the facts. As such, they may or may not apply to the question.