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Nobody Told Me About The I-751

No one told me about the damn I-751. Hi, I’m Jim Hacking immigration lawyer practicing law throughout the United States at our offices in St. Louis, San Diego, and Washington DC. If you’re watching this video, you are hereby on notice that if you get a marriage based green card, and if on the day that they issue your green card you have been married less than two years, you need to file an I-751 petition to remove conditions within that two year anniversary of you getting the green card.

So let’s walk through. Let’s say you got married on January 1, 2020, and you receive your green card on December 15, 2021. That is you’ve been married a year and 11 months and 15 days when your green card is approved, you will get a two year green card. Anything less than a two year old marriage, you’ll receive a two year green card. And it’s confusing because there’s two years and two years applies in many different parts of this analysis. If you got your green card on January 15, 2022, you’d receive a 10 year green card.

So that’s one thing to pay attention to is when is your case going to be approved? And when it is approved, have you been married for two years or not? And if you haven’t been married two years, then you’re going to have to file this. I-751 and the I-751 can be filed one year and nine months to 24 months after you receive your green card. So in other words, you get your green card and a clock starts ticking, and one year and nine months later, you can file this I-751. It’s a petition to remove the conditions on your conditional residence. You are typically going to file that with the spouse who sponsored you. There are rules that allow you to file it under other circumstances and we have videos about that. Today we’re just talking about the timing of it.

So sometimes people forget to file their I-751 and they say that nobody told me about the I-751. That’s one of the reasons why we’re making this video. But the state department and USCIS have gotten on top of this, and now in most instances, when you get your immigrant visa to come to the United States, or when you receive your green card, there’s a notice in there that you have to file this I-751, otherwise your status could be terminated. And I saw someone comment in our YouTube channel on the comments that it’s USCIS’s burden to tell you of the I-751. This is wrong. This is wrong.

One of the things you learn early on in law school is that ignorance of the law is no defense. Ignorance of the law is no defense. You are obligated as an immigrant to follow the rules in this country and that includes filing the I-751. So even if nobody told you about the I-751, you’re still responsible for it. And of course, when we help our clients get their green cards, we try to docket that deadline so that we can remind people as we get closer, that it’s time to file the I-751. We do that when we can, and we do that when our clients maintain contact with us. So you were most likely put on notice when you went to your green card interview, they had you sign a form that said you knew about the I-751, and when you get your immigrant visa, we’ve been seeing it there too, so that’s no defense to say that nobody told you about it, it’s your obligation to file that I-751 in that three month window before the two year anniversary of your green card.

If you have questions about this, give us a call 314-961-8200. You can email us info@hackinglawpractice.com. Be sure to join us on our Facebook group, which is called Immigrant Home. If you like this video, we ask that you please share that on social, that you subscribe our YouTube channel, and that you join us on Tuesdays and Thursdays, where I’ll be answering as many of your immigration law related questions as I can, usually from noon to 1:00 PM Central. Thanks a lot. Have a great day.

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