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Immigration Issues/Fiance or Spouse Visa???


QUESTION: Here's my situation:

- Fiance is a U.S. Citizen, currently residing in the USA. I am an Australian Citizen.

- Marriage to take place in Sydney, Australia in March 2008.

- I want to travel back with him to the USA on a Tourist Visa RIGHT AFTER the marriage takes place.

Is it possible for me to travel and stay in the States on a Tourist Visa AS we lodge the petition for Spouse Visa? Or do I have to wait in Australia until the petition is approved before I can move to the States and, from there, wait for the rest of the immigration process? Is there a way for me to NOT be separated from my then-husband during the lengthy application process?

Our last resort is for me to fly over to the States, right now, do Civil ceremony, return to Australia and then lodge Spouse petition.

I greatly appreciate the advice!!!

ANSWER: I would advise you not to do it that way. If you are in the USA now, get married here and process the visa here.  Then go back and have an "informal" ceremony there. If you get married in Australia, and come back on a non-immigration visa, you are committing fraud and could get into some problems.  If you get married in Australia you should process the petition at the US consulate in Australia, and you should not come to the USA until the visa is processed and issued. I don't know how long that might take.

Good luck.

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: So here's our new plan:

-I take a one week vacation to the States, next month, where my US citizen fiance and I have a Civil Ceremony.

-After I leave(and arrive in Australia)and after 30 days of the civil marriage, my US fiance will fill out and send an I-130 form.

-From there, I wait in Australia for a K3 visa to be issued so that I may leave with my husband (after he arrives in Australia for our March 2008 wedding).

My question is, can I return to Australia even though the I-130 form has not been submitted yet or will they know that I got married to a US citizen? I want to wait 30 days before we file that papers so it doesn't look suspicious that I arrived in the States for a week vacation to get married.

I'm just hoping that I won't be separated for so long after my March nuptials.

Thank You so very much.

I don't understand your question.  I don't think you do either.  I am sure you didn't understand my last response.  I suggest you contact an experienced immigration attorney and sit down and work this out.  You may regret it if you don't.

You are taking a lot of things for granted (such as how long it might take the US Consulate to process your visa). You also seem to be confusing various visa types that may or may not be appropriate for you depending upon your status.

Best of luck.

Immigration Issues

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Alexander J. Hay


I am a U.S. lawyer with offices in Houston, Texas and in Belize. I can answer questions on U.S. Immigration, U.S. corporate law, and Offshore Tax and Asset Planning.
If you are on an H or L visa I am NOT GOING TO ANSWER your questions since they are usually highly fact oriented, and also you have a company attorney handling the whole thing. Call your own attorney please! If you disregard this request, don't be surprised if I answer with "homework question".


I am a U.S. attorney with offices in the United States and Belize. I have experience helping to protect assets, reduce taxes, and improve investment performance by utilizing global investment techniques.

Harvard University, A.B. degree; University of Houston Law Center, J.D. Degree; Fulbright Scholar

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