Legal Question in Immigration Law in Washington


In 2009 we (me and my girlfriend) registered DV Lottery. In 2011 summer I've got married and in October when the program was opened we forgot to change civil status in the DV program application.

In 2012 my wife was announced that she won a green card. Now she followed all steps to gain US visa to proceed final step already in US.

How can legalize our civil status from our native country in USA considering that my wife will have green card soon?

Do we need to divorce in our native country then to go in USA and marry again (I have tourist USA visa)?

Thank you!

Asked on 3/12/13, 2:54 pm

1 Answer from Attorneys

Marlene Hemmings Marlene Hemmings, Attorney at Law

The U.S. Government honors all valid, foreign marriages. So, you are not required to re-marry in the United States.

As for the DV Lottery, if you were married before she submitted her DV application & she failed to list you as a spouse on her application, then you will NOT be included with her Immigrant Visa as a Derivative Beneficiary. However, if you were married after submission of her application, then you can be included as an "after acquired spouse". (9 FAM 42.33 N6.6 at (c)).

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Answered on 3/12/13, 3:41 pm

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