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Could your divorce cause you to be deported?

On Behalf of | Jun 27, 2022 | Family Based Immigration

When you got married, it was for love. You and your spouse had met in the United States, even though it was not your home country. You fell in love and decided to get married.

One of the benefits of that marriage, however, was that it made it possible for you to get a green card. Perhaps you were only using a visa before, and you were worried that it was going to run out. Getting a green card gives you a chance to stay with your new spouse.

The problem is that your spouse has now been discussing a divorce. You understand the reasons why, and you’re not opposed to getting divorced yourself. But you’re worried that you’re going to get deported and lose your green card if your marriage ends. Will this happen?

Only if your marriage looks fraudulent

There is no rule saying that anyone who gets divorced automatically loses their green card. This is true even if the marriage itself was the reason they got that green card to begin with. You do not necessarily have to get deported and you are not necessarily going to lose your status.

But it’s important to remember that this can happen. The issue comes up if the government decides it looks like your marriage was fraudulent. For instance, if you got divorced very quickly after getting married and acquiring that green card, they may think that the entire point of the marriage was simply to get the card.

This type of fraud is illegal, so you could be deported if this is determined to have occurred. The same is true for couples who stay married but are found to be engaging in fraud.

That said, the divorce itself doesn’t mean that you committed fraud. It’s very possible that you got married legitimately and that you’re also getting divorced legitimately. So the government isn’t just going to look at your marital status and decide that it’s time for you to leave the country. They may decide to start an investigation if they think fraud occurred, but a lot of people simply get divorced and never have to worry about losing their green card at all.

Understanding your options

It makes sense that you’d be nervous about something like this as you work to protect your life in the United States. Be sure you are fully aware of all of your legal options if complications do arise.