Posted 02 February 2008 - 04:00 PM
I am a US citizen and my fiance is a Canadian citizen who is here on a student visa. We plan on staying in the states after graduation (May 09) and having him become a US citizen. However, we are not 100% sure on how to proceed. We are thinking about hiring a lawyer to help, but wondering it is necessary (we would like to save the money if possible).
Our understanding is that after we get married he will become a permanent resident... and then can begin the naturalization/citizenship process which will take a few years. Is that correct?
We were also planning on doing a court house wedding before our actual ceremony in Jamaica to avoid any other complications. (Even though we will probably do it no matter what... does anyone know if just being married in Jamaica would be a problem with his citizenship process?)
Lastly, my mom and I were talking and she asked if it would be better for him and his tuition costs if we did the court house ceremony now as opposed to right before we go to Jamaica. (Right now he is paying basically 'out of state' tution which is about doulbe the 'in state' rate and since he is not a citizen is not able to apply for the normal student loans). As we start a rotation process this summer... we will have 3 more full term semesters yet to pay, so it could be significant chunk of money. Does anyone know if we are correct in our thinking that: if we were to get married and he were to become a permanent resident, he would be able to pay in-state tution?
Sorry I know that may be a bit confusing... but as you can tell we are a bit confused as well. Any thoughts/experiences would be great!
In summary we are looking for advice on: immigration lawyers, US citizenship process, court-house vs Jamaica for citizenship process
Thanks in advance!
Posted 02 February 2008 - 04:36 PM
You'd need to fill out a petition to sponsor an alien relative...because he already has a US Visa I don't think he'd have many problems being approved. You need to fill out a form I-130 which you can find here;
The instructions are here;
Submit that with your $355 fee and you're good to go. Like I said, because he already has a Visa he shouldn't face many problems. Just make sure you're married before you go through with this or it will be A LOT harder. Please don't waste your money on an immigration lawyer unless he is denied citizenship!
Posted 02 February 2008 - 04:44 PM
And just to clarify... we do that petition AFTER we get married. Do you know if there is any problems/difficulties getting married at the courthouse with him being a non-citizen?
Posted 02 February 2008 - 04:51 PM
I'm not 100% sure on how that all works though - I'm thinking once he graduates his student visa would be over, so you may have to apply for the fiance visa after all.
I think your best bet in that case would be to call Immigration and ask what your best course of action would be (they're usually pretty helpful - of all the people I spoke to I only ran into 1 or 2 a-holes who weren't willing to give me advice!)
Posted 02 February 2008 - 06:36 PM
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