Removal of Conditions Attorneys in Corpus Christi, Texas
A foreign national who marries a U.S. citizen will receive a green card with the status notification CR-1, or Conditional Resident Spouse Visa, meaning the green card is good for just two years. This is the government’s way of assuring that the marriage is not a fraud as the U.S. citizen or permanent resident, along with the immigrant spouse, will have to prove the marriage is legitimate before permanent status is allowed.
If you or your spouse is living in or around Corpus Christi, Texas, on a conditional green card and needs to apply for a permanent green card, contact The Torres Law Firm. Our immigration attorneys will help you navigate the conditional status removal system.
How to Remove the Conditional Status
Conditional status is like a probationary period designed to prevent marriage fraud for entry into the United States. During the two conditional status years, the U.S. citizen and his or her spouse must build up a record of a solid relationship that can be presented along with the application to remove the condition.
The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) provides Form I-171, Petition to Remove Conditions on Residence, to apply for permanent status when a conditional green card enters the 90-day window before it expires. Both spouses must fill out the form.
Some people confuse the “two-year anniversary” specified by the USCIS with the date of their marriage, but it actually refers to the date on the CR-1 green card. Check the front of the green card to verify the expiration date. You can file Form I-171 at any time during the 90 days preceding that date.
If you fail to file and the CR-1 card expires, you will lose your resident status and immigration officials can remove you from the United States, so it is imperative to adhere to the expiration date and the need to file I-171 during the 90-day window.
If you have children who received CR-1 status the same day as you or within 90 days after you did, you can include them on the same Form I-171. If they received their conditional status later, they will have to submit separate forms.
Documents to Include With Form I-171
Remember that the USCIS is looking to see whether you established a real married relationship during your “probationary” period, so along with your Form I-171, you should include supporting evidence such as:
The marriage certificate
Birth certificates for any children born during the marriage
Proof of joint occupancy in a dwelling through a lease or mortgage document
Financial records such as joint bank accounts, federal and state tax returns, utility bills, joint credit cards, or anything in both of your names
Any other documents to verify that your marriage was not a fraud
Affidavits sworn to by at least two people who have knowledge of your relationship and have known you two since conditional status was granted
Photographs of you two together, perhaps 10 to 20, including from the wedding, traveling, and special events
What Happens Next
Within four to six weeks after submitting Form I-171, you should receive Form I-797C, Notice of Action. This notice extends your residency for 18 months while the USCIS reviews your application. You will also receive an appointment notice for a biometrics screening (photographing you and obtaining your fingerprints and signature).
Often, you will be required to undergo an interview, but the USCIS may waive the interview if the documentation you submitted is proof enough. Within 12 to 18 months, the whole process should be complete, and you will receive a permanent green card good for 10 years.
Removal of Conditions Attorneys Serving Corpus Christi, Texas
The Torres Law Firm can help you with whatever immigration challenge you face, and certainly in navigating the removal-of-conditions process. We will help you prepare a package of documentary evidence to submit with your I-171 that can help you achieve your goal of permanent resident status.
If you’re in Corpus Christi, Dallas, or Fort Worth, contact us immediately whenever you face an immigration issue. Schedule a consultation today.