Legal Guide

How to Bring a Spouse to the USA

If you want to bring your spouse to the USA, you must complete an application process that entails an interview. The interviewer will verify whether the marriage is legitimate and if the couple intends to remain together after settling in the U.S. The spouse will also need to submit some documents and pay some fees.

Immigration process for a non-US spouse living abroad

According to immigration lawyers who write for us on law, the Immigration process for a non-US spouse can take up to two and a half years. During this time, the non-US spouse must remain outside of the U.S. and must maintain a valid visa. During this time, the non-US spouse may not be permitted to return to the country until the petition is approved.

The process begins with filing a petition with the USCIS, and then attending a visa interview at a US consulate abroad. The specific process varies, so you should consult an immigration attorney. This person will guide you through the complex process, so that you won't be under any unnecessary stress.

Once your case is approved by the USCIS, the National Visa Center (NVC) will begin processing it. The NVC will forward your Form I-130 case to the U.S. embassy in the country where your non-US spouse is living. In most cases, your spouse will wait about three months to receive the approval notice.

Available visas

A spouse can immigrate to the United States with a green card or a visa. In general, the process is simple, and it only takes a year for a U.S. citizen to bring their spouse to the U.S. For permanent residents, the process is more involved and requires longer waiting times. In some cases, permanent residents may have to wait even longer. However, if you and your spouse have a good relationship, the process will be much quicker.

Depending on your status and priority date, the spouse visa may be delayed for 24 months or longer. Lawful permanent residents can apply for a Spouse Visa Guidance when their priority date is current. Once the priority date is current, the application file is sent to a consulate or embassy in the spouse's country for processing. After submitting the application, the spouse will be contacted and a date will be set for the interview.

Application process

You can apply for a green card for your spouse to join you in the USA. To get a green card, you must show evidence of bona fide marriage. This can be evidence of shared financials, insurance, and tax filings. You can also show proof of a child born during the marriage.

If your spouse was born outside the United States, you must be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident in order to get a spouse visa. It is not a straightforward process and requires several documents. If your spouse is already a citizen, you will be able to get a green card within one year. If your spouse is a permanent resident, however, you will have to wait for a longer period of time.

Once your spouse has applied for the visa, you will need to complete the interview at the U.S. embassy or consulate. During the interview, your documents will be checked and you will be asked questions about your application. If you have passed all these steps, you will eventually be a legal resident of the United States. The visa process can vary widely depending on the country and the priority date of the spouse.


The costs to bring a spouse to the USA can vary significantly depending on the country of origin. The cost of a USCIS-approved physician will usually be free, but you may have to pay for the medical examination. Depending on your country, you may also need to pay for travel to the United States. Additionally, you may have to pay for photographs and postage for your application. Lastly, you may have to pay for transportation to the consular interview.

In general, filing fees for the initial form I-485 with the USCIS will be about $1,140. The cost of biometric data taken from your foreign spouse will vary between $85 and $1,140. In addition, the fee for the immigration medical exam may cost anywhere from $9 to $34 depending on where you get it.

Consular processing

If you're looking to bring your spouse to the USA on a permanent basis, you need to go through Consular processing. This process is similar to applying for a green card. It involves interviewing your spouse. The embassy wants to make sure that your marriage is legitimate and that you intend to live together in the USA. The consular officer will then decide whether to approve your petition or return it to USCIS.

Consular processing is usually the easiest and fastest option for bringing a spouse to the United States. However, it is important to understand that this process is not the same for every spouse. Some of your spouse may already be a U.S. citizen, which makes the process easier.

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