How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask GeorgetownLawyr Your Own Question
GeorgetownLawyr, Family Law Attorney
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 12049
Experience:  Experience: contested Divorces, custody disputes, Post dissolution modification, child support issues, adopti
Type Your Family Law Question Here...
GeorgetownLawyr is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

US Citizen getting married to a Residential Alien (Canada)

Customer Question

US Citizen getting married to a Residential Alien (Canada) in Jamaica. Are there added complications to doing the certificate in Jamaica vs getting the paperwork done at home in the US before we leave?
Submitted: 5 years ago via USmarriagelaws.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  GeorgetownLawyr replied 5 years ago.
Hello, My name is XXXXX XXXXX I'll be helping you resolve your matter.

Please remember there may be a delay as I may be helping other customers.

Where do you plan on living after the marriage? In Canada or the U.S.??
if the u.s. will you be petitioning for the green card for the Canadian??
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
Hi Lisa! Thanks for help.

My girlfriend (the Canadian) and I currently live in Madison, WI in a house I own. After getting married, we'll be living here.

Could you explain how the green card works with marriage? She currently has a green card and I was under the impression from movies that once we wed, she was automatically a US citizen. How does it actually work?

An addition thought: She has lived in the US so long she's eligible to become a citizen on her own right if she just takes the test (in fact, she's the only one in her immediate family that doesn't currently have duel citizenship). So, we're trying to figure out which of these 3 options is least messy/expensive:

1 - She gets her citizenship in the summer. Then we'll be getting married in Jamaica as two US citizens.
2 - Wed wed in Madison right before we leave. Then the wedding in Jamaica would be just a cerimony. (I'm not sure how this would work with the green card I'm asking about above).
3- Have the wedding certified in Jamaica between a US citizen and Canadian citizen.

Thanks again for your help.

Expert:  GeorgetownLawyr replied 5 years ago.
Ok, Matt thanks. I'm glad to hear she has her green card because that would have affected where you got married. If she didn't have her green card and you got married in Jamaica and had to petition for her green card, she would have had to go back to Jamaica at the u.s. embassy for the interview. So glad that is not the case. I do not know the criteria for getting married in Jamaica but just know that the u.s. will recognize the marriage certificate from another country and you do not have to register it or do anything here when you return. I think it's just easier to have the legal marriage in the u.s. and then have the ceremony in Jamaica. None of these options affect her green card. Also, she does not automatically become a u.s.citizen when you get married, she will have to apply for citizenship. the only thing that a foreigner marrying a u.s. citizen does for them as far as citizenship is concerned is that they only have to wait 3 years after getting their green card through marriage to a u.s. citizen to file for citizenship, whereas if they did not get their green card through marriage to a u .s. citizen they have to wait 5 years after getting the green card to get citizenship. so her marriage to you does not affect her time or ability to become a u.s. citizen, since she did not get her green card based on marriage to you.

Thank you for allowing me to assist you. As you know, we work on the honor system here and cannot always provide you answers that you like. I believe I have answered all of the questions you asked so I would request that you please click the ACCEPT button so I receive credit for my work (as you would like to receive credit for your work). Positive feedback is also appreciated, if you have a chance. Please consider clicking "BONUS" as a nice way of saying "thanks" for a job well done, although this is not required. I believe in giving information that is to the point, but please remember that I can only base our answers on the information you provide and sometimes a misunderstanding as to what you are looking for or already know occurs so feel free to ask additional questions or for clarifications. Please be aware that my answer is not legal advice, it is merely information. You should always contact a local attorney for legal advice. If you specifically want me to answer a future question put “FOR GEORGETOWN LAWYER” in the subject line and I will reply asap.
GeorgetownLawyr and 2 other Family Law Specialists are ready to help you

Related Family Law Questions