Understanding Removal of Conditions
If you and your spouse were married for less than two years when your green card (visa) was obtained, it would be “conditional,” meaning it will only be valid for two years. To become a permanent resident of the United States, you must apply for Removal of Conditions and get a 10-year green card.
What is a Conditional Green Card?
A conditional green card allows you to live and work in the United States as any other green card holder, but only for two years before you must update your status to a full, ten-year green card. If your immigration status is not adjusted within the 90-day window before your conditional Green Card expires, you will lose your permanent resident status and be forced to leave the United States. Conditional Green Cards are not renewable.
- To remove the conditions on a Green Card based on marriage, you must file Form I-751, Petition to Remove the Conditions of Residence.
- To remove conditions on a Green Card for entrepreneurs, you must file Form I-829, Petition by Entrepreneur to Remove Conditions.
I-751, Petition to Remove Residency Restrictions
If you’re a conditional permanent resident who got your status through marriage and want to remove the conditions on your status, you have to fill out this form.
You must file with your spouse within 90 days of the expiration of your two-year Green Card (technically known as a Permanent Resident Card). USCIS may immediately terminate your status and send you a Notice to Appear if you do not file on time (NTA).
If you were granted conditional permanent resident status on the same day as your parent or within 90 days of receiving conditional status, you might be eligible to be included on your parent’s petition. Otherwise, you’ll have to submit a petition with your stepparent on your own.
You may file to remove conditions on your permanent residence status without your spouse or stepparent at any time after you are granted conditional status if:
- You or your parent entered into the marriage in good faith, but your spouse or stepparent subsequently died;
- You or your parent entered into a marriage in good faith, but the marriage ended through divorce or annulment;
- You entered into a marriage in good faith, but either you or your child were battered or subjected to extreme cruelty by your spouse;
- Your parent entered into the marriage in good faith, but you were battered or subjected to extreme cruelty by either your parent or your parent’s spouse; or
- Termination of your status and removal from the United States would be extremely hard.
How to File Form I-751
- Complete and sign your Form I-751;
- Pay the filing fee, if applicable; and
- Provide all required evidence and supporting documentation.
(NOTE: Detailed instructions are written on Form I-751, Petition to Remove Conditions on Residence)