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What happens if a current EB-5 applicant gets married to a U.S. citizen?

I currently have my conditional EB-5 green card. I also just got married to a U.S. citizen. Now I am wondering if I can change my status from the EB-5 conditional green card to a permanent green card through the marriage? How would I go about closing the EB-5 application? Or would it be faster to just stay on the EB-5 route?

Answers

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    Fredrick W Voigtmann

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    If you have a conditional green card through EB-5, then you are not eligible to adjust your status in the United States, even if you are married to a U.S. citizen. In addition, if you abandon your EB-5 green card and apply for U.S. lawful permanent residency based upon marriage to a U.S. citizen, you will get a new two-year conditional green card (if you have been married to the U.S. citizen spouse for less than two years). If you still want to proceed with this route, you might abandon your green card at a U.S. embassy or consulate in your home country and immigrant visa process based upon the marriage case. You should consider that you will be starting a new two-year conditional period. If you desire to get to a permanent green card in the fastest possible manner, then staying the course with your EB-5 green card might be a better option.

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    Ed Beshara

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    An experienced EB-5 immigration attorney will be able to assist and direct you. Based upon the facts you present, you have two choices to obtain conditional permanent residency. Either option allows you to operate the U.S business. For instance, you may determine it is more expensive to operate the U.S. business under the EB-5 program, and as a result you may continue your conditional permanent residency under the marriage to the U.S. citizen.

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    John J Downey

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Both avenues require a two year conditional residence. When the two years have elapsed under EB-5, you must continue your residence for three more years to be eligible for citizenship. The marriage route would require only one year after the conditions are removed, to file for citizenship. You will have to do the math.

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    Oliver Huiyue Qiu

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    It would actually be faster if you stay on the EB-5 route. For a marriage-based green card application, you gain a two-year conditional green card if at the time of green card approval, your marriage has yet to reach the two-year anniversary. After that, you would have to wait two more years to have such condition to be removed. Therefore it is faster to stay on track for your I-829 filing.

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    Salvatore Picataggio

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Even though you already have a conditional green card, you already have a green card. If your U.S. spouse petitions for you, you receive another conditional green card! Since you are already so far in the EB-5 process, stick with it, but take comfort in the fact that you have a backup plan if the project goes south and you cannot remove your conditions.

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    Steffanie J Lewis

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    What happens if a current EB-5 applicant gets married to a U.S. citizen? - - Both are very happy. On a serious note - - No, you cannot exchange your conditional EB-5 permanent resident status for another permanent resident card based on marriage. However, your U.S. citizen spouse can apply for you and you can terminate your current status concurrently with applying for adjustment of status based upon the I-130 petition by your spouse. You would be without work authorization for about 90 days while your application is processing. Therefore, if you feel comfortable that your application to remove your current condition would be approved, you may wish to adjust on the basis of your EB-5 investment without having your spouse petition. You would still be eligible for U.S. naturalization, if you so choose, after having lived with your spouse for three years, as contrasted to the standard requirement to have been a U.S. permanent resident for five years.

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    Gregory Romanovsky

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Unfortunately, you cannot change your status, as you are already a permanent resident of the United States. You can, of course, relinquish your permanent resident status (by executing Form I-407 overseas or at the airport) and refile for permanent residence on the basis of marriage, but I see no reason for doing this, unless you have serious concerns about the prospects of your I-829 application.

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    Jinhee Wilde

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    If you just married, the permanent residency will also be a conditional one for two years, which you will have to remove later by staying married and proving that your marriage was not for immigration purposes. If you have been married for more than two years, you may get a permanent green card. Also, since your EB-5 case probably was with a regional center with other investors in a limited partnership, there will be a limitation on how to withdraw from the partnership and getting your investment out. My advice is to stay the course as long as your EB-5 was with a good and reliable regional center project.

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    Robert West

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    If you just get married, you would only be eligible for a conditional green card from a different category. If you wait and file after being married two years, then you would be eligible for the permanent card.

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