Legal Question in Immigration Law in Massachusetts

International Marriage in US / Massachusetts


I am in love with a 21 year old International Student whom is in college in MA. We would like to get married for many reasons. One, of course, we are in love. Two, we would like to stay together this summer while she is between classes because her classes just ended and she doesn't start again until September, she is under the impression that she can't legally stay for the entire summer due to a time limits while out of school (on an F-1 Visa) and may have to return home to Kazahkstan, Russia and wait until school starts again before being able to return to the US to continue her education come fall. Maybe this isn't true (question #1)? Anyway, I'm assuming we just get a blood test, marriage license, and get married. She says it's not that easy and we have to do something special to accomplish this, for example fill out papers or apply or something to that affect. What do we have to do to get married (question #2)? Can you please tell me what the easiest way is to get married to someone whom is over here for school and isn't a citizen or has a green card? She would also like to work this summer but of course can not due to her citizen status, True? Thank You very much if you haven't been told that yet.


Asked on 5/20/04, 3:09 am

3 Answers from Attorneys

Myron Morales Lee Lane Smith LLP

Re: International Marriage in US / Massachusetts

After you are married, she will need to apply for permanent residence. It is a simple, but lenghty process. While the application is pending, she will have the right of abode, could work and travel outside the U.S. with the appropriate documentation.

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Answered on 5/20/04, 8:44 am

Giuseppe (Joe) Scagliarini Law Offices of Giuseppe Scagliarini

Re: International Marriage in US / Massachusetts

The requirements for marriage are a matter of state law and are the same regardless of the citizenship of the spouse. She may have to show that she is a resident of the state in order to get a license to marry (this is usually easy to show under state law).

After you get married, your new status does not automatically mean that your spouse can legally live and work in the U.S. There is a process that I suggest you start right away in order for her to get her permanent residency and, while the application is pending, to be able to work and travel outside of the U.S.

As far a the F-1 is concerned, it does not sound to me as she should be forced to return home for the Summer if she is already enrolled for the next semester. However, I do not have all the facts.

I would be interested in consulting with you should you need further assistance.

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Answered on 5/20/04, 9:05 am
Rebecca White Law Office of Rebecca White

Re: International Marriage in US / Massachusetts


Most international students are able to remain in the US during summer break. She may wish to consulte with the school's international advisor. As for marriage, the two of you may marry in the US. You will need to follow state law, but you do not need to do anything special due to her status as a non-citizen. However, marriage in itself will not change her status. You will need to complete the appropriate applications before the immigration service. She should then receive employment authorization, allowing her to work in the US without restrictions. If you married right away and completed the paperwork quickly, you may have time for her to receive the work authorization card before summer. She may also want to look into "Practical Training." Again, consulting her school's internationl student advisor may be a good first step regarding the availablity of practical training. I hope this information is helpful. If you have further questions, please contact my office.

My best wishes - and congratulations on your upcoming marriage!

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Answered on 5/20/04, 12:47 pm

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