How to Marry an Illegal Immigrant

How to Marry an Illegal Immigrant
How to Marry an Illegal Immigrant


Entering into marriage with an undocumented immigrant can present complexities and challenges, yet it is not prohibited.

In the United States, no laws prevent the marriage of a U.S. citizen or permanent resident to an undocumented immigrant.

However, achieving legal status for the marriage involves overcoming additional obstacles and meeting specific requirements.

What is an illegal immigrant?

An undocumented immigrant is an individual who has entered or remained in the United States without valid documentation, such as a visa or a green card. The reasons for being in a country without legal status can vary, including fleeing persecution, pursuing better opportunities, reuniting with family, or exploring different cultures.

Such individuals might also be referred to as undocumented immigrants or unlawful presence aliens. Living in the United States without legal status exposes them to various risks and challenges, including the possibility of arrest, deportation, exploitation, discrimination, and being denied access to essential services and rights.

What are the benefits of marrying an illegal immigrant?

Entering into marriage with an undocumented immigrant can bring about various advantages for both partners. Some of these benefits include:

  1. Expressing love and commitment by assisting your spouse in navigating the immigration process.
  2. Offering emotional and financial stability through the shared life you build together.
  3. Enjoying companionship and intimacy by spending quality time with your spouse.
  4. Leveraging each other’s skills and talents for collaborative work or shared interests.
  5. Building a family together by having children and creating a shared future.

What are the challenges of marrying an illegal immigrant?

Entering into a marriage with an undocumented immigrant also entails various challenges that require careful consideration. Some of these challenges include:

  1. Establishing the authenticity of your marriage to demonstrate it is not fraudulent for immigration purposes.
  2. Navigating the uncertainty and stress associated with your spouse’s immigration status and prospects.
  3. Addressing the potential separation or divorce from your spouse in the event of deportation or citizenship status changes.
  4. Safeguard yourself and your children from any adverse consequences stemming from your spouse’s immigration status or actions.
  5. Adhering to all relevant laws and regulations about marriage, taxes, healthcare, and education in both countries.

How do I marry an illegal immigrant legally?

To legally marry an undocumented immigrant in the United States, follow these steps:

  1. Get married: Obtain a marriage license in your state, adhering to local requirements for identification documents.
  2. Apply for a K-1 visa: If your spouse is outside the U.S., file Form I-129F with USCIS, providing evidence of your relationship. Pay a $535 fee.
  3. Marriage within 90 days: After entering the U.S. on a K-1 visa, marry within 90 days. For permanent residency, apply for adjustment of status at a U.S. consulate abroad by filing Form DS-260 and paying a $220 fee.
  4. Apply for adjustment of status post-marriage at a U.S. consulate abroad, file Form I-485 with supporting documents, and pay a $1,225 fee. Attend a USCIS interview for eligibility verification.
  5. Receive a green card: Upon approval of an adjustment of status, your spouse receives a green card, granting permanent residency. This allows legal residence, work, and travel with some restrictions. Eligibility for U.S. citizenship arises after three years of marriage to a U.S. citizen or five years of permanent residency.

How to Marry an Illegal Immigrant Illegally?

To illicitly marry an undocumented immigrant in the United States, follow these steps:

  1. Avoid legal marriage: Refrain from getting legally married in any state. Opt for religious or cultural ceremonies without obtaining a marriage license to prevent official records that immigration officials could use against you or your spouse.
  2. Bypass the K-1 visa: Do not apply for a K-1 visa for your spouse outside the U.S. Instead, explore alternative methods for their illegal entry, such as crossing the border, overstaying a tourist visa, or using false identification.
  3. Ignore the 90-day rule. Contravene the requirement to marry within 90 days of entering the U.S. on a K-1 visa. This prevents your spouse from applying for adjustment of status and avoids violating visa terms, albeit without legal recognition.
  4. Avoid adjustment of status: Neglect applying for adjustment of status after a marriage ceremony at a U.S. consulate abroad. This prevents your spouse from becoming a permanent resident, as their entry will be considered illegal.
  5. Refrain from receiving a green card: Do not permit your spouse to receive a green card after adjustment of status approval. This denies them the benefits of legal residency, such as working and living legally, unrestricted travel, and eligibility for citizenship. Opt instead to endure the challenges and risks of living as an undocumented immigrant in the shadows.


Entering into matrimony with an undocumented immigrant is an intricate and precarious undertaking that demands meticulous planning.

There exist both lawful and unlawful avenues to marry an illegal immigrant, each with its own set of advantages and drawbacks.

Opting for the legal route can offer security and stability but may entail significant costs and time commitments.

Conversely, the illegal route might provide flexibility and freedom, yet it comes with potential dangers and stress.

Ultimately, the decision rests with you and your spouse, necessitating a careful evaluation of the pros and cons of each option to determine which one aligns best with your needs and objectives.

Leave a Comment