One of the common and quickest ways to get a green card is through marriage with someone who is a US citizen or permanent resident. However, when your marriage ends in a divorce after you get a green card through marriage, it may affect your green card status. Whether you will be affected depends on whether you have a regular or conditional green card.
To know which type of green card you have, check the Residence Since date and expiry date on your green card. If there is a difference of 10 years between the two dates, you have a regular green card. In case of a difference of two years between the two dates, you have a conditional green card.
The regular green card is issued to individuals who have been sponsored to get permanent resident status by a spouse who happens to be a US citizen or permanent resident. In order to be eligible for this green card, you must have remained in a matrimonial relationship with your spouse for more than two years. If you have a regular green card obtained through marriage, a divorce from your spouse will not affect your green card status.
On the other hand, a conditional green card is issued to individuals who have been sponsored to become a permanent resident by a spouse who is a US citizen or permanent resident. Here the marriage is less than two years old. If you have a conditional green card, you must apply to eliminate the conditions on your green card within ninety days prior to the expiry of your green card. Not doing so can lead to the loss of your green card status. You can have the conditions removed by filling and submitting the Form I-751.
Normally, you and your spouse would be required to file the Form I-751 jointly. If your marriage has ended in a divorce, you can file the Form I-751 individually. You must prove that your marriage was real and not just meant to get a green card.
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