If you have been married less than two (2) years by the time you get to the interview on your permanent residency application, and assuming you meet all other requirements, you and your foreign-born children will be granted conditional residency for a period of two years. At the end of the two years, you will need to file a separate application to remove the conditions and obtain permanent residency.

In essence, filing for the removal of conditions on your residency requires that you prove to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) that your marriage was not entered into simply to evade immigration laws. You are eligible to remove the conditions on your residency if you (1) are still married to the same U.S. citizen, (2) are a child who cannot be included in your parents’ application, (3) are a widow or widower who entered into the marriage in good faith, (4) entered into the marriage in good faith, but the marriage ended through divorce or annulment, or (5) you entered into a marriage in good faith, but you or your child  were battered or subjected to extreme hardship by your U.S. citizen spouse.

You and your spouse must apply together to remove the conditions on my residence within the 90-day period before the expiration of your residency card. If you are late in filing your application, your conditional resident status will automatically be terminated and USCIS will begin removal proceedings against you. If you are unable to apply together with your spouse, you may apply to waive the joint filing requirement, which requires additional evidence, such as a showing of extreme hardship, depending on the reason for not filing together.

To apply to remove the conditions together with your spouse, you must use Form I-751, Petition to Remove Conditions on Residence, and provide documentation proving that your marriage was entered into in good faith. Evidence of a good faith marriage includes, but is not limited to, birth certificates of children born of the marriage, property deeds showing joint ownership, life insurance showing each other as the beneficiary, joint tax returns, joint bank account statements, driver’s license or correspondence showing the same address, and pictures of the couple, with family, with friends, etc.

Lastly, although the majority of applications are not scheduled for an interview, you may be scheduled for an interview if there are questions regarding your eligibility.

The information in this blog post (“post”) is provided for general informational purposes only, and may not reflect the current law in your jurisdiction. No information contained in this post should be construed as legal advice from Reid & Hellyer, APC or the individual author, nor is it intended to be a substitute for legal counsel on any subject matter. No reader of this post should act or refrain from acting on the basis of any information included in, or accessible through, this Post without seeking the appropriate legal or other professional advice on the particular facts and circumstances at issue from a lawyer licensed in the recipient’s state, country or other appropriate licensing jurisdiction.