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Married to an American Citizen, how can I obtain my Green Card?

Updated: Apr 30

One of the most common paths to achieve the coveted Green Card is through marriage to an American citizen.

The USA has long attracted people from all over the world in search of opportunities and a better future, and obtaining permanent resident status is an important step in this journey.

For those who marry an American citizen, the Green Card can become a reality, provided they follow the proper procedures established by the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS).

What is the step-by-step process for applying for a Green Card after marriage?

The documentation application requires the applicant to follow a clear set of steps, divided into 6 stages:

  1. Family petition (Form I-130): The first step is to initiate the process by submitting Form I-130 to the USCIS, known as a family petition. This form is used to establish the legitimate relationship between the American citizen and the foreign spouse.

  2. Petition approval: After submitting Form I-130, the USCIS will review the petition to ensure its accuracy and authenticity. If approved, the petition will be forwarded for further processing.

  3. Immigrant visa application processing (DS-260): The foreign spouse must complete an online immigrant visa application, Form DS-260, through the US Department of State. This form provides detailed information about the applicant's background.

  4. Gathering documentation: During this stage, the couple must gather a variety of supporting documents, including marriage certificates, financial records, medical records, among others.

  5. Consular interview: The next step involves an in-person interview, where the foreign spouse will be questioned about their relationship and eligibility for the Green Card.

  6. Approval and issuance of the Green Card: If the interview is successful and all conditions are met, the foreign spouse will receive approval for the Green Card, which, when issued, will grant the foreign spouse permanent resident status in the USA.

What is the estimated duration of the entire process?

The estimated time to complete the entire process can vary from case to case, taking around 2 years in some instances.

The duration depends on various factors, such as USCIS processing, visa availability, and scheduling of the consular interview.

Will I also receive a Green Card if I marry a permanent resident?

Yes, the process of obtaining a Green Card through marriage is also possible when the spouse is a permanent resident (Green Card holder) and not an American citizen.

However, permanent residents are subject to a different preference category compared to American citizens. This may affect the waiting time and availability of immigrant visas for the foreign spouse.

It's important to know that each case is unique, and seeking professional guidance is essential to ensure an efficient journey through the process.

With over 13 years in the market and a 99.5% approval rate, the team at Murtaz Law is here to help you!

If you're interested in understanding more about how to apply for a Green Card through marriage, send a message to us. We are available to answer your questions.

About Murtaz Law

With more than a decade of experience, we take pride in guiding families and individuals on their journey to legally immigrate to the USA, whether temporarily or permanently.


Our success story spans a variety of cases, including temporary immigration, family reunification, naturalization, and especially, work visas like the EB2-NIW, which leads to the Green Card. Over the years, we have built a solid reputation and become a reference for skilled professionals, artists, and elite athletes who wish to expand their careers or undertake ventures in the USA.


Our 99.5% approval rate in cases demonstrates our commitment to a personalized approach, combining ethics, creativity, and deep knowledge of the laws and economic issues. We recognize that each client has a unique story and work side by side, individually, to create tailored strategies that achieve the desired outcomes. We take the importance of our work in our clients' lives seriously. Your future deserves a unique strategy, and we at Murtaz Law have the experience and expertise to meet your immigration needs.

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