The reason I am getting in touch is that I have fallen in love with an American woman while I am French and live in France. Sadly she does not live in a state where same-sex marriages are allowed.
As someone who has been through all this, I was wondering whether you had any advice on how to proceed so I could eventually get a Green Card and live there with her. John Kerry’s words on the topic of binational gay couples when he was in Britain last summer are encouraging but I do not know if the treatment of gay couples is now the same as non-gay ones.
I was wondering whether you had written any post on the topic or whether you could suggest an organization I might contact.
First of all: congratulations! Love is an amazing thing.
As for your question, the answer is pretty simple: if you’re willing to get married, there’s no problem. You can get married in any state where it’s legal; it doesn’t matter where you live.
According to the US Customs and Immigration Service here’s how it works.
- You get married in a state where same-sex marriage is legal.
- Go live anywhere in the US.
- Apply, using form I-130, to sponsor your spouse for a family-based immigration visa.
- You live happily ever after.
It’s a bureaucratic hassle–tedious rather than hard if you’re legally married.
A couple of things are unclear to me, though. For example, how does engagement rather than marriage work? Would you have to travel to a state where marriage is legal to propose? But a good lawyer could help you through those hurdles. The one I always recommend is Carolyn Soloway, of Frazier, Solowy, Poorak & Kennedy, P.C. in Atlanta. She helped me. Kelley still describes her as a goddess of justice.
…and I am amazed and delighted to type that. I think of all the years, the stress, the money, Kelley and I had to spend and now it’s so simple. This is fabulous. Good luck!