Can Marrying Someone Stop Deportation?

Marriage License

Can Marrying Someone Stop Deportation?

For many years, getting married was a sure way to guarantee legal residency. It qualified your spouse from another country to stay in the United States by applying for a permanent green card by filling out the appropriate paperwork. While that still holds true today, it won’t stop the deportation process or ensure that there is no risk of possible deportation in the future.

Being married can assist in the process of establishing a legal status in the United States. Here are some common situations that may occur to you that can result in deportation.

1. Your History with Immigration

If you’ve entered the country illegally, it will be hard to stop the deportation process. You must enter the United States legally by obtaining a visa or green card so that you’re doing everything by the book. If you only entered illegally once, for less than six months, you might be able to establish a special case with immigration officers. However, if you were here illegally for more than one year, it will be challenging to develop your case. Every case is different, so it’s important to talk to an immigration lawyer about your specific situation to find an appropriate solution.

2. You’ve Committed a Crime

It doesn’t matter if you’re married with a green card. If you break the law, you will still have consequences to pay. If you’ve committed a crime such as murder, possession of drugs, human trafficking, etc., you will not be able to stop the consequences of your offense by getting married. Deportation is still likely to occur in these types of scenarios.

3. Your Application Was Denied

Even if you’ve done nothing wrong, you may not be eligible to apply for a green card. This could be because of your previous immigration history, medical issues, or some other red flag on your application. In this case, even if you’re married, you could be deported because you don’t have the legal documentation, such as a visa or green card, to stay in the United States.

The Safe Way to Stop Deportation

The only safe way to stop deportation is to file your paperwork proactively, before this is an issue, to be considered for permanent residency. To apply for residency, you must follow the following steps after getting married.

  • You must submit your application. Your application will include  Form I-130, which establishes that a valid marriage exists, and Form I-485, which proves that the spouse is eligible for a green card. The forms must be accompanied by the appropriate processing fees and supporting documentation.

  • You’ll receive confirmation from the UCSIS of an in-person interview to determine your application documents’ validity. If approved, you’ll obtain a conditional (if married less than two years) visa or a permanent residency visa (if married over two years).

If you’re confused about the filing process or want to ensure that you’re doing everything the right way to avoid being deported or having to resubmit your paperwork, contact an experienced immigration lawyer today.


Rick Sterger is a licensed attorney practicing immigration law throughout the United States. His practice, located in San Diego, California represents client before United States Citizenship and Immigration Services, Executive Office of Immigration Review (Immigration Court), Board of Immigration Appeals, and Circuit Courts of Appeals. Rick proudly maintains the practice of providing his initial client consultation for FREE. To schedule a consultation, call (760) 280-7900 today.

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