When it comes to relationships, life can be unpredictable and sometimes even the strongest partnerships can come to an end. If you’ve obtained a green card but find yourself considering a divorce, then you may be wondering: how long do I need to wait before I can legally end the marriage? The answer isn’t a simple one, but that doesn’t mean you don’t have options. Read on as we investigate the crucial details regarding how long after getting your green card you need to wait before filing to divorce.
1. The Divorce Process After Receiving a Green Card
Going through a divorce when you have a green card can be difficult. Whether it was brought about by a toxic marriage or a disagreement in lifestyle choices, the divorce process itself can be daunting. On top of the emotional hardships, legal issues can arise and make the process more difficult. Here is a look at .
- Understanding Your Rights: Before beginning the divorce process, it is important to understand all your rights under the law. As a green card holder, you are granted certain rights, including rights pertaining to the divorce. These rights vary from state to state and should be thoroughly understood before taking any further steps.
- Understanding the Procedure: After familiarizing yourself with your rights, it is important understand the necessary procedures for filing for a divorce. Depending on the state, the procedure might be slightly different. It is important to ask a lawyer for assistance at this stage.
It is also important to understand that in order for the divorce process to proceed, both parties must be in agreement at all stages. If one party fails to comply, then the process may be delayed. Keep in mind, however, that the court system has certain deadlines that must be adhered to in order to protect both parties.
2. When Is the Right Time to Divorce After Obtaining a Green Card?
Getting a green card is a major milestone in your life as a foreign immigrant to the United States. However, it also has serious implications for certain marriages. In certain cases, maintaining a marriage after getting a green card can have serious immigration and financial ramifications.
It is often necessary to discuss the option of divorce if the marriage was initially entered into for the purpose of obtaining a green card. In such a situation, the right time to consider divorce is right after the green card has been issued. There is no point in maintaining a marriage that is no longer wanted or no longer serve any purpose.
- Ending the Marriage Early – By obtaining a divorce as soon as possible, you can avoid any immigration complications. A successful divorce will make it easier for both parties to move on independently.
- Considering Financial Implications – Once the marriage is over, both parties may need to consider the financial implications that the divorce brings with it. This can include the division of assets, alimony payments and child support.
- Counseling or Mediation – Before going ahead with any decisions, it is important to consider counseling or mediation as a way to bridge any differences between the spouses.
3. Legal Obstacles to Consider Before Finalizing a Divorce Post-Green Card
Getting a green card can be a long and arduous process, and no couple should take the dissolution of that effort lightly. When considering a divorce after getting a green card, there are three main legal obstacles that need to be considered before filing. These are:
- Divorce Disqualification: The US immigration laws stipulate that, in order for an immigrant to be granted permanent legal residence, they must prove that their marriage to their US citizen spouse is valid. If a couple files for divorce after being approved for a green card, their residency status could be revoked.
- Child Custody: The immigration laws do stipulate that US citizen parents can ask for sole or shared custody of their child with a foreign national parent. This could cause immigration delays if the US citizen spouse is uncooperative or uses child custody disputes to slow down the visa process.
- Income and Credit: The US immigration laws require that the US citizen spouse have enough income and credit to provide for their foreign national spouse. When a couple divorces, the foreign national spouse may not have access to this income and credit and may be unable to work in the US. This can cause significant immigration delays and other external complications.
It is essential that the couple thoroughly explores all the potential issues of a post-green card divorce before they make any final decisions. Working with an experienced immigration attorney can be a great way to ensure that all legal aspects are considered before any filing is done.
4. Taking the Next Step: Seeking Counsel for a Green Card Divorce
If you and your partner are looking to end your marriage and you have already started the green card divorce proceedings, the next thing you need to consider is to seek legal counsel. As the immigration implications of going through a green card divorce can be complicated, it is vital that you enlist the help of a qualified legal expert to ensure that you have the best chance of a successful outcome. By following the four steps outlined below, you can confidently take the next step towards a successful green card divorce.
- Research – Research your local area for green card divorce attorneys. Check their credentials and find out if they would be the right lawyer for you.
- Schedule a Consultation – Contact the attorney and setup a consultation so you can discuss your situation and ask any questions you may have.
- Understand Fees – During the consultation, ask about the fees associated with the case and make sure you understand the payment terms.
- Discuss Proceedings – Discuss the court proceedings and any other elements that may be tied in with the divorce such as the removal of the conditions on your green card.
Once you have contacted the attorney and discussed everything, you can make an informed decision as to whether they are the right choice for your situation. Keep in mind that it is important to research thoroughly as the quality of your lawyer can mean the difference between a successful outcome and a more difficult situation related to your green card divorce.
Leaving a marriage can be a difficult decision to make, but understanding the immigration rules when it comes to obtaining a green card and filing for a divorce can help alleviate some of your worries. No matter the length of time, taking time to consider your next steps is an important part of the process. Keep in mind that to be eligible for a divorce, your marriage must be a valid one according to your state’s laws. Taking the initiative to gain more knowledge on the green card and divorce processes will help to make your decision easier.