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What to Know About Divorce & Immigration

Gurian Group, P.A. Feb. 1, 2022

Book with words Immigration Law and glassesA divorce is often an emotional and overwhelming experience for the parties involved. For foreign-born citizens who came to the United States to get married, divorce can be particularly challenging. The divorce can impact your immigration status and your ability to continue living in the United States.

At Gurian Group, P.A., I have the knowledgeable guidance and advocacy to help clients in complex immigration matters involving divorce. As an experienced Florida immigration attorney, I can enlighten you about how divorce affects your immigration status and answer your different questions regarding divorce-related immigration issues. My firm is proud to serve clients in Miami and surrounding communities throughout Florida.

Possessing a Green Card vs. Not Possessing a Green Card

Immigrants whose marriages are up to two years or less can get a conditional green card. However, you may be facing some challenges in a divorce if any of the following apply:

  • You do not have a green card,

  • You possess conditional residency dependent on your spouse, and

  • You are yet to file a Form I-751 – Petition to Remove Conditions on Residence – within two years from marriage to become a citizen.

To obtain a green card, applying for a waiver will be required. Your application for a waiver will be granted if you can prove that:

  • You entered into the marriage in good faith, and

  • You are not at fault for the failed marriage.

How Does a Divorce or a Separation Affect My Status?

Divorce is a court process that permanently terminates a marriage legally. Legal separation allows the couples to live apart while remaining legally married. A divorce can affect your immigration status if it is connected with the marriage. Unlike divorce, a legal separation usually does not affect a person’s immigration status.

Does Divorce Affect a Permanent Green Card Holder’s Status?

However, divorce does not affect a permanent green card holder’s status. Once you have been granted an unconditional permanent residency, a divorce cannot affect your status.

Does Divorce Prevent Me From Ever Getting My Green Card?

A divorce can make it challenging to become a permanent resident or green card holder, but it isn’t impossible. You can apply for a waiver by showing that you married your estranged U.S. citizen spouse in good faith and you weren’t responsible for the marital dissolution.

Will Divorce Affect My Status as a Current Application Process of Becoming a Citizen?

Foreign-born spouses of U.S. citizens have to wait only three years after obtaining their green card to become naturalized citizens. However, if you get a divorce, you will no longer be eligible for this exception. You will have to wait for the normal five years before you can become a U.S. citizen.

How Legal Counsel Can Help

Divorce in Florida often involves a lot of complexities. Things can get even more complicated if one party’s immigration status is dependent on or connected with the marriage. Therefore, if you’re concerned about the impact of divorce on your immigration status, it is crucial to speak with an experienced immigration law attorney with family law knowledge for proper guidance and to help you navigate key decisions.

At Gurian Group, P.A., I have the expertise, skill, and diligence to assist and guide clients in various divorce-related immigration matters. As your legal counsel, I can help evaluate the surrounding circumstances of your unique situation and help you understand how divorce can affect your immigration status. Using my in-depth understanding of immigration laws, I can seek to guide you through the process of obtaining your green card even after the divorce.


Contact my firm – Gurian Group, P.A. – today to schedule a simple consultation with an experienced immigration law attorney. I have the detailed legal counsel and reliable advocacy you need to navigate key decisions in your divorce-related immigration issues. My firm proudly serves clients in Miami and surrounding communities throughout Florida.