If you are a US Citizen or Lawful Permanent Resident, you have the right to file a petition for your husband or wife to obtain a spousal visa, otherwise known as a green card. The spousal visa application process can be confusing. That is why it is recommended to hire an immigration attorney who can help you navigate the changing immigration laws on behalf of your husband or wife.
The first step in a spousal visa application is to file the form I-130 Petition for Alien Relative. In this petition you must prove that you have a bona fide, or genuine relationship with your spouse. With this petition, you should submit proof of your US citizen or lawful permanent resident status, proof of the identity and citizenship of your spouse, and proof of your relationship. Proof of relationship can include: photos, affidavits, joint documents, children in common, and other evidence of your relationship. The government also looks at any age, religious, or cultural gaps between you and your spouse.
If the spousal visa petition is approved, then you must prove that you can support your spouse husband or wife financially in the United States. This requires preparing a form I-864 Affidavit of Support. This document is a contract between the sponsor and the United States government affirming that the sponsor agrees to be financially responsible for the applicant until the applicant has accrued roughly ten years of valid work history in the United States or the applicant becomes a US citizen. If you do not make enough money to be the sole sponsor, you can use a co-sponsor, who must fill out their own affidavit of support. You must include copies of your federal tax returns, recent paystubs, and an employment verification letter with your affidavit of support.
Your spouse must also submit a plethora of biographic information and supporting documentation and answer many security questions. Your spouse will also have to undergo a medical examination to make sure your spouse does not have any disqualifying diseases and has obtained the proper vaccinations.
Then your spouse will be scheduled for an interview with a US immigration official. If your spouse is living abroad, he or she must appear for the interview at the US embassy or consulate in his or her home country. If your spouse is in the United States, your spouse may be eligible to attend his or her interview in the United States, or he or she may be required to return to his or her country of citizenship for the spousal visa interview. If your spouse must leave the United States, he or she could potentially trigger a bar to re-entry. That is why it is very important to speak with a knowledgeable immigration attorney before beginning the spousal visa application process so you are sure of your processing requirements.
The attorneys at Vanderwall Immigration have extensive experience processing spousal visa applications from within the United States and through US embassies and consulates all over the world. Call 503-206-8414 to schedule your consultation with one of our immigration attorneys to discuss how we can help you achieve your dreams.