The IR6 Green Card: Navigating Spousal Immigration to the U.S.


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Explore the essentials of the IR6 green card with The Law Office of Tatiane M. Silva, P.A. Learn how this visa category can pave the way for permanent residency in the U.S. for spouses of American citizens.

What Is the IR6 Green Card?

As a foreign national, one of the benefits of being married to a U.S. citizen is that you might be eligible to obtain a marriage-based green card and become a lawful permanent resident. However, despite your eligibility, permanent residence after marriage is not automatic. You must apply for a green card and fulfill all other immigration law requirements. Only then can you be recognized as a lawful permanent resident and enjoy all the perks of being a green card holder.

There are different marriage-based green card classes (represented as codes on the green card) designed for the spouses of U.S. citizens, each with different application requirements. The IR6 is the marriage green card category reserved for spouses of U.S. citizens who are physically present in the U.S. and have been married for at least two years.

The IR6 marriage green card category is the quickest route to U.S. citizenship for spouses of U.S. citizens. However, the application process could be difficult to navigate without immigration law experience. That’s where we come in.

At The Law Office of Tatiane M. Silva, P.A., we take pride in guiding families through the intricate IR6 application procedure. We understand that each family’s journey is personal and that there is much at stake regarding immigration. That’s why we approach each case with the utmost professionalism, dedication, and compassion. 

Below, we explain the IR6 green card application process basics to help you understand the legal requirements and self-assess your eligibility. We’d be happy to answer your questions afterward.

The IR6 Green Card: How It Works 

The IR6 green card offers a direct pathway to lawful permanent residence and citizenship for spouses of U.S. citizens who are physically present in the U.S. and who have been married for more than two years.  

This green card class is often confused with other marriage green card classes, such as the IR1 or CR6. However, they are not the same.

The IR1 applies to foreign spouses of U.S. citizens who have been married for at least two years and live abroad. In contrast, the CR6 green card is designed for spouses of U.S. citizens who have been married for less than two years and are physically present in the U.S.

CR6 green card holders are granted conditional permanent resident status and non-renewable green cards valid for two years. So before it expires, the green card holder must file a petition to remove the conditions of other residence; otherwise, they could be placed in removal proceedings.

IR6 green card holders are not burdened with such restrictions. IR6 green cards are valid for ten years and can be renewed. Also, as the spouse of a U.S. citizen, your route to U.S. citizenship might be quicker since you may be eligible for naturalization in three years instead of five. 

Eligibility Criteria for the IR6 Green Card

To qualify for an IR6 green card, you must meet certain requirements, including the following:

  • Your marriage must be valid under U.S. law or the law of the country where it was contracted.
  • You (the foreign-born spouse) must be physically present in the U.S. 
  • Your entry into the U.S. must have been lawful.
  • Your marriage must be authentic and not a sham contracted for immigration purposes.
  • Your marriage must be at least two years old when you become a permanent resident.

From this list, it is clear that your marriage’s validity, legitimacy, and duration are huge factors regarding IR6 green cards. We can assess your case and show you how to establish that your marriage meets these requirements to increase your chances of a positive outcome.

If we determine that you do not qualify for an IR6 green card because you do not meet the marriage requirements or other eligibility criteria, we can help you identify the right marriage green card class for your circumstances and guide you through every step of the application process. 

The IR6 Green Card Application Process 

The IR6 marriage green card application process requires the joint participation of you and your U.S. citizen spouse. The process involves a series of steps that can be summarized as follows:

Filing the Immigrant Petition: Like other family-based green cards, IR6 applications begin when the sponsoring family member, in this case, your U.S. citizen spouse, files Form I-130, Petition for Alien Relative.

Filing Form I-485: Form I-485, Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status, represents the actual green card application. This form allows you to apply for your green card without leaving the U.S. through the adjustment of status process. Usually, green card applications cannot be filed until the immigrant visa petition is approved. Still, because you qualify as an immediate relative of a U.S. citizen, you can file forms I-485 and  I-130 simultaneously. This is known as concurrent filing.

    Required Documentation 

    Forms I-130 and I-485 must be supported or filed with copies of certain crucial documents, including;

    • Your marriage certificate.
    • Proof of your spouse’s citizenship (U.S. passport, birth certificate, or naturalization certificate).
    • Your birth certificate or any other evidence of your birth.
    • Your government-issued identification (with photos).

    Insufficient documentation is one of the most common reasons for application denials. Hence, gathering and organizing the relevant documents before filing is essential.

    Biometrics Appointment/Green Card Interview: After USCIS receives your forms, you will be scheduled for a biometrics appointment. You may also be scheduled for an in-person interview with a USCIS officer. You must attend every appointment you are scheduled for. Otherwise, you risk your application being denied.

    The Decision: You’ll be notified once USCIS decides on your application. If you are successful, your IR6 green card will be mailed to you. If your application is denied, USCIS will state the reasons for the denial in the notice. They’ll also inform you on whether you can appeal the decision, but adjustment of status decisions are generally unappealable.

    There are other ways to get USCIS to review your case. However, exploring those options involves additional expenses and legalities. That’s why it is important that you do all you can to ensure you succeed the first time, including seeking legal counsel and representation. 

      How The Law Office of Tatiane M. Silva, P.A. Can Help

      At The Law Office of Tatiane M. Silva, P.A. in Miami, Florida, we understand that the IR6 green card process can be complex and filled with unique challenges. We help couples and families navigate the immigration process with ease, drawing from our extensive immigration law knowledge and experience. 

      We offer the following services:

      • Legal Advice: Understanding the nuances of immigration law is vital to your success. We can provide solid and personalized legal advice tailored to your specific situation to help you make informed decisions about your case.
      • Document Preparation: Mistakes or omissions in the IR6 application forms and supporting documentation can lead to denials or processing delays. We help our clients prepare and file the required documents appropriately to minimize such issues.
      • Requests for Evidence: Sometimes, USCIS requests additional documentation before processing IR6 or immigration applications. In such cases, we can provide quick responses to such requests on your behalf to ensure your application progresses as quickly as possible.
      • Interview Preparation: At the IR6 green card interview, you’ll be questioned by a USCIS officer to verify your qualification for the green card. We can help you prepare for the interview and equip you so you know what to expect and can go through the process confidently.
      • Legal Representation: if your IR6 application has already been denied, we can represent you and help you explore your options to reopen your case or file a fresh application.

      We’ve achieved favorable results in countless cases with our dedicated and compassionate approach, and we hope to do the same for you. So, no matter where you are in the IR6 process, do not hesitate to contact us. Let our immigration attorney in Miami guide you as you strive to secure your stay in the U.S.

      Contact The Law Office of Tatiane M. Silva, P.A. Today

      The IR6 green card process allows you to adjust your status and become a lawful permanent resident without leaving the U.S. However, the process can be complex due to the legal requirements, documentation, and multiple steps involved. But you don’t have to do it alone.

      We are prepared to assist you and work diligently to help you achieve your immigration goals no matter where you are.

      Contact us today to schedule a consultation. Let us work together to make your dreams of permanent residence and family unity a reality.


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