There are many ways for immigrants to obtain a green card. Some people become eligible by working in the United States for years. Others may qualify through family relationships.
An engagement with or marriage to a United States citizen is one of the ways that people may qualify for a green card. They can enter and live in the country if they marry a citizen. However, those who secure a green card through marriage only have a conditional green card. What is the condition imposed on a green card secured through marriage?
The marriage must last at least two years
Those who secure green cards through marriage or who enter the country with a K-1 fiance visa do not have the same protections as other permanent residents. A standard green card is valid for 10 years and can lead to indefinite authorization to remain in the United States. People can change jobs or alter their family circumstances without any concerns.
When a green card is obtained through marriage the immigrant must apply to remove the conditional status on their initial card to secure a standard green card. To do so, they typically need to remain married for at least two years after entering the country. They must also file appropriate paperwork before their conditional green card expires.
Provided that someone meets the marriage requirements attached to a conditional green card, they can become a permanent resident whose marriage no longer has any bearing on their right to remain in the country. Learning about the restrictions on conditional green cards may benefit those who enter the country because of a marital relationship.