Marry an american when on student visa... anyone have experience with immigration?

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  1. My bf and I have been together for 5 almost 6 years, its been long distance for the last 5 years and we just started living together Sept 06.

    Right now Im in the US on a student visa so Im not sure how this switching of visa status will work if we do decide to get married. Sooooo...I graduate gradschool in AUgust 07, and I have 1 year from that date until I have to move back to Thailand if I do not get a US job that will sponsor me.

    My question is, should we start our marriage paperwork soon? How long does this process take?
  2. hmmm someone I know was in a similar situation....from what i know, her student visa expired yeeeears ago, she married a US citizen, and filed the paperwork for her own citizenship like a week after the wedding.

    it took about 6 months to a year for her to get her papers.

    this was last year, I'm pretty sure not much has changed.
  3. I'm a Canadian and I married an American but we went to an immigration lawyer and I got my permanent residence card in 1 year. From the time we applied to card in hand. The lawyer was the best money we ever spent. No delays, no worries about filling out the right forms. Our lawyer took care of all that and came to the interview with us. It was super easy and relaxing with her there. But I wasnt a student here. My only advise is hire a lawyer and if you can't afford that or don't want one there are many websites that give advise. Visa journey is one. We didn't have time nor did we want to waste our time figuring out the immigration ins and outs so we hired a professional for what is a really easy case for her. That being said, I would do it all over again. Money well spent.
  4. thanks for the info!

    im super worried now because my bf's friend just married a girl from China and shes been living in the US for almost 2 years and still no green card!
  5. If you're engaged, you can apply for a K-1 fiancee visa. You can have an immigrant (aka the finacee visa) and a nonimmigrant work visa in process at the same time as far as I know.

    Since you will have a lot of immigration processes going on at once, I'd definitely look into hiring an immigration lawyer as you get further down the line.
  6. Im a Immigration paralegal pm me any question
  7. That's a great question cause I was/is in the same boat. Now I'm not sure what to do and I haven't spoken to the immigration lawyer I used for my working visa. I applied for a working visa right after I graduated and did my OPT for one year.