How can I reinstate my fiances legal residency status? 4 Answers as of May 12, 2011

My girlfriend came legally from Chile to the U.S. She is now illegal and we were contemplating marriage. I’m a Citizen of this amazing country. What steps can we take for her to become legal again and we have a happy marriage away from her immigration status? I’m a Citizen.

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Pacifica Legal Services
Pacifica Legal Services | Floyd Fernandez
The quick answer is that you need to marry her first, if the two of you are in love. Secondly, since she came legally, and then overstayed her visa. Therefore she is inadmissible, under the law. However, because, she did come into the country legally and overstayed (if she has not left and returned illegally during the interim), the law grants an exception for her to be eligible to adjust status (apply for green card), after your initial petition for her is granted. If you and your girlfriend marry, and are able to get verification of the reality of your existing relationship, then you certainly will be able to apply for legal residency for her through the two-step petition/application process.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 5/12/2011
Law Office of Christine Troy
Law Office of Christine Troy | Christine Troy
If you are a US citizen, she entered the US with the intention of leaving on time but overstayed her admission period and you marry, you can file for a green card for her in the US. Given that she is out of status, you should meet with a competent immigration attorney in your jurisdiction to determine how your local DHS office handles that type of case. That attorney can also analyze all other factors of your case-finances, prior marriages, immigration history, etc to verify that there are no issues barring the green card application.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 5/12/2011
Nicastro Piscopo, APLC
Nicastro Piscopo, APLC | Louis M. Piscopo
Once you are married she is eligible to apply for a Green Card. You have to petition her by filing an I-130 Petition and she can apply for adjustment of status. There are other forms and applications, and supporting documents that must accompany the packet.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 5/12/2011
The Jarrett Firm, LLC
The Jarrett Firm, LLC | Patrick Jarrett
Your question turns on several factors. I presume that since you called your girlfriend your fiance, that you will be marrying her. After your marriage, you can file to adjust status if she entered legally and does not fall under certain limitations that are specific to certain visas. The adjustment of status application process is quite involved and includes the filing of numerous forms and supporting documents. Just because you may satisfy the requirements to file for an adjustment, does not mean that the petition will be approved. The approval decision is reached after the weighing of several factors, including but not limited to, criminal history, the validity of the marriage, the evidence supporting the petition, as well as other case specific information. I would encourage you to speak with immigration counsel to determine where you stand in your case.
Answer Applies to: Georgia
Replied: 5/11/2011
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