Can You Lose Your Green Card When You Get Divorced?

Can You Lose Your Green Card When You Get Divorced?

Apr 7, 2022, 10:45:15 AM Opinion

No one wants to think about the possibility of a divorce when they first get married. However, it’s essential to know what could happen to your green card in the event of a split. You can ask for advice from your local immigration law firm.

In general, if you are divorced, your green card will be automatically terminated. That means that you will have to leave the country and may not return. There are, however, a few things that you can do to protect your green card in the event of a divorce.

  • If you have been married for less than two years when you get divorced, you may be able to apply for a green card through marriage again. That means that you will have to go through getting a new green card, but it is possible.
  • If you have been married for more than two years when you get divorced, you may be able to apply for what is called a “conditional green card.” This green card is valid for two years and can be renewed. 
  • To get a conditional green card, you will need to show that you have been living together as a married couple when your green card was valid.
  • If you cannot get a new green card or a conditional green card, you may be able to apply for something called a “waiver.” A waiver allows you to stay in the United States even though your green card has been terminated. 
  • You will need to show that your divorce was caused by domestic violence or other extraordinary circumstances to get a waiver.

If you are going through a divorce, it’s essential to talk to experienced immigration attorneys. They can help you understand your options and ensure that you are taking the proper steps to protect your green card.

A Divorce Does Not Automatically Terminate An Individual's Immigration Status

There are, however, some cases in which you may lose your green card if you get divorced. For example, if you are found to have committed marriage fraud, you may lose your green card due to the divorce. 

Additionally, suppose you are convicted of a crime that carries a potential sentence of imprisonment for one year or more, among others. In that case, your green card could also be in trouble if you are found out to have committed a crime.

So, as with most things in life, the answer to this question is complicated. If you are concerned about whether or not you will lose your green card if you get divorced, it is best to speak with an immigration attorney who can help advise you based on your specific situation.

Process Of Renewing Your Green Card After Divorce

If you are a lawful permanent resident (green card holder) and get divorced, you will not automatically lose your green card. However, some things could happen which would cause you to lose your green card. 

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For example, if you are convicted of a crime that carries a potential sentence of imprisonment for one year or more, you may lose your green card due to the divorce.

The process of renewing your green card after divorce is relatively simple. You will need to file Form I-90, "Application to Replace Permanent Resident Card," with the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). You can find more information on the USCIS website.

If you have any other questions about divorce and green cards, please feel free to post them in the comments section below.

Name Changes With Your Green Card

When you get divorced, you will need to go through changing your name. This process varies from state to state, so you will need to speak with an attorney in your area who can help guide you through the process.

Generally, you will need to file a petition with the court requesting that your name be changed. The court will then hold a hearing to decide whether or not to grant your petition. 

If the court grants your petition, you will need to follow the instructions provided to you by the court to change your name officially.

What Is A Conditional Green Card?

A conditional green card is a type of green card granted to individuals married to United States citizens. 

The purpose of a conditional green card is to provide temporary status for the individual until they can prove that their marriage is genuine and not just to obtain a green card.

If you have a conditional green card, you will need to file Form I-751, "Petition to Remove Conditions on Residence," with the USCIS within 90 days of your conditional green card expiring. 

What Happens If A Couple Divorces Before The Green Card Approval?

If a couple divorces before the green card approval, the non-US citizen will likely have to leave the United States. 

The US citizen spouse can file a Form I-130, "Petition for Alien Relative," on behalf of the non-US citizen spouse to try and get them back into the country, but there is no guarantee that the petition will be approved.

When you become a lawful permanent resident (green card holder) and get divorced, your application may be denied. 

The reason for the denial will likely be that you are no longer eligible to become a green card holder based on your current marital status.

Hiring An Immigration Lawyer

If you are going through a divorce and have questions about how it will affect your green card, it is best to speak with an immigration lawyer. An immigration lawyer can help guide you through the process and answer any questions you may have. 

You can find a list of immigration lawyers in your area on the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA) website.

If you are going to file for divorce and have a green card, you may be required to hire an immigration attorney. That is because the divorce could impact your green card status. 

You can find out more about whether or not you are required to hire an immigration lawyer by speaking with an attorney.

How To Choose An Immigration Lawyer Fit For Your Case

When looking for an immigration lawyer to represent you in your case, it is essential to do your research. You will want to find an attorney who has experience with the type of case you are filing. 

It is also essential to consider the cost of hiring an attorney. Most attorneys will charge an hourly rate, so be sure to ask for a quote before hiring someone.

In choosing immigration lawyers, it is crucial to consider their experience with the type of case you are filing and their cost. Most attorneys will charge an hourly rate. You can discuss the costs with your lawyer and discuss your budget range beforehand. 

Many lawyers offer a free consultation, so you can always meet with a few and see which one you would like to work with for your divorce.


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Published by Shahbaz Ahmed

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