Conditional Green Card
Conditional Resident Status/Temporary Green Card
An alien married to a U.S. citizen or Lawful Permanent Resident is generally granted the status of Lawful Permanent Resident on a conditional basis where the qualifying marriage is less than two years at the time of admission or adjustment of status to Lawful Permanent Resident. The conditional Permanent Resident Status is valid for a period of two years.
Joint Petition to Remove the Conditions on Lawful Permanent Resident Status.
Within ninety days before the end of the two-year period of conditional Permanent Resident status, the alien is required to remove the conditional basis of the Permanent Resident status by Jointly Filing USCIS Form I-751 Petition to Remove Conditions on residence with her U.S citizen or Lawful Permanent resident spouse requesting removal of the condition.
Where USCIS determines that the alien’s marriage to the U.S citizen or Lawful Permanent Resident spouse was entered into in good faith, USCIS will remove the condition on the alien’s resident status. Where an unfavorable determination is made, USCIS will deny the application and terminate the alien’s Conditional Permanent Resident status.
Waiver of Joint-Filing Requirement for Removal of Conditions on Lawful Permanent Resident Status.
There are exceptions to the Joint Filing requirement above. The alien may seek a waiver of the Joint Filing requirement to remove the conditional basis of the Permanent Resident status if the alien demonstrates any of the following:
- That extreme hardship will result if the alien is removed/deported from the United States.
- That the qualifying marriage was entered into in good faith by the alien spouse, but the qualifying marriage has been terminated (other than through the death of the spouse), and the alien was not at fault in failing to meet the requirements of submitting a joint petition and appearing for a personal interview or;
- That the qualifying marriage was entered into in good faith by the alien spouse and during the marriage the alien spouse was battered by or was the subject of extreme cruelty perpetrated by his or her spouse, and the alien was not at fault in failing to meet the requirements of submitting a joint petition and appearing for a personal interview.
Waiver of Joint Filing Requirement based on Extreme Hardship.
In an application for waiver of joint filing requirement based on extreme hardship, USCIS considers circumstances that occurred during the period that the alien was admitted for Permanent Residence on a conditional basis.
The Courts have held that “Extreme hardship encompasses more than the mere economic deprivation that might result from an alien’s deportation from the United States. The readjustment of an alien to live in his or her native country after having spent several years in the United States is not the type of hardship that has been characterized as extreme.” Economic disadvantage alone does not constitute extreme hardship.
Waiver of Joint Filing Requirement based on a Good Faith Marriage.
To determine whether an alien entered into the marriage in good faith, for purposes of determining whether to grant his or her request for waiver of joint petition requirement for removing conditional Permanent Resident status, United States Citizenship & Immigration Services-USCIS considers the degree of commitment to the marriage by both parties, noting the chronology of the courtship, marriage, and divorce, also considered is evidence of their joint and shared life together, including any documentation concerning their combined financial assets and liabilities, length of time during which they cohabited after marriage and after alien obtained conditional permanent resident status, and any other relevant evidence.
Waiver of Joint Filing Requirement based on being a Battered Spouse or Subject to Extreme Cruelty.
The waiver of the joint filing requirement requires a showing that the marriage was entered in good faith. During the marriage, the conditional Permanent Resident alien was battered or subject to extreme cruelty. Police reports and hospital records can be key documents in establishing that battering, or extreme cruelty existed, but not all abuse cases contain these items. Waiver applications usually prompt a personal interview with a USCIS Immigration examiner.
Dependent Children of a Conditional Permanent Resident.
Dependent children of a conditional Permanent Resident who acquired conditional Permanent Resident status concurrently with the parent may be included in the joint petition filed by the parent and the parent’s petitioning spouse. A child is deemed to have acquired conditional Resident status concurrently with the parent if the child’s Permanent Resident status was acquired on the same date or within 90 days thereafter. A Child who cannot be included in a joint petition filed by the parent and parent’s petitioning spouse due to the child’s not having acquired conditional resident status concurrently with the parent, the death of the parent, or other reasons may file a separate Petition to Remove the Conditions on Residence.
Time spent as a conditional Permanent Resident count towards the three years/five years requirement for Naturalization.
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