What would the legalization procedure be after a US citizen marries an illegal alien?

UPDATED: Mar 1, 2012

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What would the legalization procedure be after a US citizen marries an illegal alien?

What about marrying an illegal alien who might have a deportation? alien is from Mexico. What are the options?

Asked on March 1, 2012 under Immigration Law, California


Dustin Bankston / Bankston Immigration Law Office

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

The non-citizen spouse will need to leave the country to consular process if he or she wants to get legal status here.  However, depending on entries and exits to the U.S. as well as deportation orders and any criminal convictions, there may be bars to admission.  For example, if the spouse stayed in the U.S. for more than one year unlawfully, he or she will have a 10 year bar which would require a waiver.  If the spouse has a removal order and has reentered, he or she will be subject to the permanent bar and not be able to apply for a waiver until out of the country for 10 years.  

As you can see, the analysis of your case is very complicated.  I urge you to not leave the country until you have had an immigration attorney go over your options with you.  

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