Immigration Law

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Spouse Visa Questions

The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) define a spouse as a legally wedded husband or wife. A visa allows foreign citizen to request for permission to enter in US, it does not guarantee the entry though. Below are some spouse visa related questions answered by immigration lawyers.

I married an illegal immigrant who entered the United States without a visa. He has been paying income tax the entire time he has lived here. Will he have to leave the U.S. and go back home? Will he be able to get a spouse visa?

Because your spouse entered the United States illegally it may be very difficult to sponsor him for a spouse visa. You can still file the petition for his visa but if it’s approved, your husband will have to return to his home country for his immigrant visa interview. When he leaves the U.S., because he has been here illegally, a bar will be triggered and he will not be allowed to return for 10 years. You can apply for a waiver to request forgiveness, but this is very rarely granted and the process is complicated. In order to file the waiver, you as the U.S. citizen or permanent resident relative must prove that having your spouse be away for 10 years will be an extreme and unusual hardship for reasons that are more than simply economic or psychological. For example, if you have mental health issue or a medical condition that keeps you from working and you need the support of your husband, you can get the necessary medical examinations and provide documentation to the consulate. However, you must be able to convince the authorities your hardship is different from that of all the other U.S. citizens who live separately from their spouses and whose spouses are barred from living in the U.S. because they were here illegally. Read more about the waivers at the following links:

I am in the U.S. on an E-2 spouse visa. Will it still be valid after my divorce?

Your visa will no longer be valid and you will be out of status once the divorce is finalized. If you stay, you will be in the U.S. illegally and will be at risk of deportation. What you would want to do now is file Form I-539 as soon as possible to change status to a B-2 visitor visa. You will need to be able to show you are able to support yourself financially. If your status change is approved you will get an additional six months in the United States. You may wish to have an immigration attorney help you file the change in status as soon as possible.

I have been a joint sponsor of two immigrants within past five years. I earn $50,000 per year and have no other dependents. Can I also be a sole joint sponsor for third person?

It should be fine to sponsor the third person, you will need to show you are financially stable and able to sponsor this individual, given your other obligations, but if you can do this there should be no problem. Your ability to sponsor people with an I-864 is limited only by your income. As long as you can afford to support the person or people you sponsor, if becomes necessary, there should be no limit to the number of people you can sponsor with Form I-864.

I am in the U.S., while my wife and her son are in Ukraine. My spouse has not yet changed her last name to my last name. I have filed an I-130 for my spouse. Will either my spouse or her son face any problem entering in the U.S. with a different last name than mine?

It should be if your wife and her child do not have your last name. However, you will need to an I-130 for her child in addition to the I-130 you have filed for your wife.

When applying for a spouse visa or when filing for divorce when one has a spouse visa, couples can feel unsure of the appropriate course of action. If you are confused about the legal process and in need of clarification, it may be sensible to get Experts insight.
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