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What is a Conditional Resident?

What is a Conditional Resident?

PUBLISHED ON: October 29

If you have recently arrived in the United States or you gained entry into the country as a new spouse of a United States citizen, you probably have a conditional residence in the country. Having condition permanent residence status gives you access to the majority of benefits and services of U.S. citizens. However, because your status is conditional, it is also temporary. Below, our Illinois immigration lawyer explains how to remove the conditions on your residence.

Understanding Conditional Residency

Conditional residence is also sometimes called conditional permanent residence, which is confusing to some, as the terms contradict each other. This type of residency is known as permanent because you still have many of the rights of a U.S. resident; you can live anywhere in the country, and you can obtain employment with any private employer based in the United States. The conditional aspect means that you have one or more restrictions on your green card.

Most of the time, conditional residency applies to entrepreneurs who have entered the country to start a business, which could benefit Americans through employment opportunities. Due to the fact that not everyone has the resources to start a business, the other most common reason for conditional residency is marriage to a U.S. citizen.

How to Remove Conditions

To ensure that you can remain in the United States permanently, it is important to remove the conditions on your green card. To do this, you must take the following steps:

  • Make sure you are eligible: If you are a conditional resident based on marriage, you must have been married to a U.S. citizen for two years.
  • Prepare your documents: You can remove conditions by filing Form I-751. You will also need supporting documents, which will include your current green card, your marriage certificate, other documents that prove the marriage is valid, and any law enforcement or court statements showing you are not involved in any criminal proceedings.
  • Apply for a waiver: If you have been married for two years and are still currently married, you do not need a waiver. On the other hand, if you divorce or your spouse passes away, you will have to apply for a waiver of joint filing.
  • Pay the fees: The filing fee to remove conditions is $585, and the biometrics fee is $85. Additional fees may also apply, depending on the facts of your case.
  • Mail the application early: To give yourself the best chance of approval, you should mail the application at least 90 days before your conditional green card expires.
  • Wait for the decision: The USCIS will make a decision on your application within 90 days after they receive it.

Our Immigration Lawyer in Illinois Can Help with Your Application

If you have a conditional green card, our experienced  Illinois immigration lawyer at Sverdloff Law Group can help you remove the conditions so you can remain in the country permanently. Call us today or contact us online to request a consultation and to get more information.

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