Can I get married in a foreign country on a student visa?

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Can I get married in a foreign country on a student visa?

I am an Ecuadorian citizen here studying in the U.S. on a student visa. I have a fiance who is a U.S. citizen and we plan to get married. We really want to marry in another country. I was wondering if I keep my student visa status if we get married in a foreign country and how can I apply for a visa change in the U.S.?

Asked on August 15, 2017 under Immigration Law, Arizona

Answers:

SB Member California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

Yes, you can do that but it can cause issues for you to return to the US as a spouse of a US citizen with intent to immigrate while you are traveling on a student visa which does not allow for immigrant intent.  First of all, you have to learn what the requirements for getting married in a different country are and whether you satisfy those requirements.  Secondly, if you still pursue this and return to the US on the F-1 visa, you will not be able to start the process of adjustment of status for about 3 months after you enter.  I would probably advise against this and suggest that you get married at least officially (you can then have a second wedding/party/celebration wherever you want) and file for your adjustment of status in the US on the basis of marriage to a US citizen.  Once you get your advance parole travel document, then you can travel anywhere without risking the student visa status.


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