What If You Get Divorced From Your U.S. Sponsor?

The lawyers at Davis & Associates explain how getting divorced after receiving a green card can impact a person’s immigration status or their rights and obligations.

Green card holders are usually unaffected by a divorce when they file another application or petition with U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) if they are already a lawful permanent resident with a 10-year green card.

In fact, green card holders can change their name on the document at the same time they renew or replace it. (Or they can file to change the name even if the card is still valid and in good condition to have consistent legal documents with their new legal name). To do this, the green card holder must show legal proof, like a divorce decree, to prove they need to change their name on the green card. This can be done by filling out the name change on Form I-90 and submitting a copy of the legal name change document.

If a person obtained their green card by marrying a U.S. citizen and their marriage was less than 2 years old at the time of approval, then getting a divorce might cause some complications. In cases where the marriage was less than 2 years old at the time of approval, USCIS will issue a conditional green card that is valid for two-years. During the 90 days prior to the expiration of the green card, the Permanent Resident must file an application to remove the conditions (Form I-751, Petition to Remove the Conditions on Residence) as well as supplemental evidence to prove the bona fides of the marriage. This application should be filed jointly with the spouse through which the residency was obtained. In cases of divorce, the green card holder cannot file jointly and must file with a waiver request.

Divorce can also impact when a Lawful Permanent Resident can apply for naturalization.

Parties who are interested in applying for, renewing, changing their name or removing conditions on the green card, or even applying for their naturalization can visit Davis & Associates for more information.

*This is for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice.