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What is the fastest marriage visa option for an EB-5 permanent resident?

I just received my 10-year permanent green card via the EB-5 program. I can apply for citizenship next year. I plan to marry my girlfriend who is now in China. What will be the fastest way to bring her into the United States? Do I need to wait until I become a citizen before filing anything?

Answers

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    Fredrick W Voigtmann

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    As a permanent resident, you can petition for your spouse (once you marry your girlfriend). Under the family-based preference category (F-2A), there is a waiting time of almost two years. You can petition for her as soon as you get married and then wait for the priority date to become current. If you become a citizen, the petition can be "upgraded" to an immediate relative category, which is not subject to a quota or the wait time for an available immigrant visa number.

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    Julia Roussinova

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    The fastest option generally is to bring your Chinese national spouse when you become a U.S. citizen. However, you may file a petition as a permanent resident for a spouse right now (which will take about two years for an immigrant visa to become available) but later upgrade it to faster processing when you become a U.S. citizen because there is no immigrant visa waiting line for immediate relatives of U.S. citizens.

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    Charles Foster

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    The fastest way to bring your girlfriend to the United States is to acquire U.S. citizenship and once married, file a petition for your spouse and to qualify her as a conditional permanent resident. You do not have to wait until you become a U.S. citizen; as a lawful permanent resident, you can petition for your spouse at any time. The only advantage would be to have the petition adjudicated sooner rather than later. Once you become a U.S. citizen, the petition automatically converts to an immediate relative petition.

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    Raymond Lahoud

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    The process is quicker if you are a U.S. citizen. Nonetheless, as a permanent resident, you can file for your spouse and seek an upgrade from a permanent resident sponsoring a spouse to a U.S. citizen sponsoring a spouse. In doing so, it gives you a head start on the petition process.

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    BoBi Ahn

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    For spouses of permanent residents, there is approximately a two year waiting period before the spouse can even apply for the immigrant visa. For spouses of U.S. citizens, the processing is immediate.

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    John J Downey

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    As the spouse of a U.S. citizen there is an immediate visa availability. As the spouse of a green card holder she would be placed in a different category and required to wait. Best bet is to wait for your citizenship then apply for her.

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    Salvatore Picataggio

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Being a citizen first will help with the process, but permanent residents can apply for spouses as well. There are other options for fiance's as well. Working with an immigration attorney will be of great benefit to you and your future wife.

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    Bernard P Wolfsdorf

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    You can marry her now and file an F2A petition that takes about two years. When you become a citizen, this automatically upgrades to an immediate relative case with no waiting line.

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