Do I still have to contact my ex-wife because of immigration issues? 2 Answers as of July 30, 2010

I got married in 2006 and had that marriage dissolved in 2008. I am a US citizen and I petitioned for her to get her green card which she received. Now she is trying to contact me alleging that I HAVE to help her with her immigration proceedings. I think she is trying to change her status from conditional permanent resident to permanent resident, but I’m not entirely sure because I don’t want to speak with her. Do I legally have to help her or communicate with her?

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Pacifica Legal Services | Floyd Fernandez
The short answer is maybe. On one hand, once she has received a temporary/permanent legal residency visa, you are subject to insuring that you are her financial sponsor for up to an additional three years, to avoid her becoming a public charge (under welfare). However, you are not required, and in fact, you are not to vouch for her as your present wife so she can remove conditions of permanent residence (to do otherwise is marriage fraud and can get you both in jail). However, she can make a sworn statement declaring that the earlier marriage was entered into for love and not for an immigration benefit. That is for her to fulfill by having supporting statements by significant other people in her life (including things like pictures of the wedding, honeymoon, or even a birth of a baby (if one occurred). You could assist in giving a statement supporting her with that application, but you do not have to.

Above all, nobody can afford to lie, no matter how inconvenient the circumstances are. If she needs help, she can call. Otherwise, you should stay away from trying to give her any statements indicating a marital status that obviously does not exist. It may not have registered with her that one cannot make certifications of an existing qualified marriage that does not anymore, crime does not pay.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 7/30/2010
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