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Can the government declare your marriage invalid?

| Dec 24, 2020 | Family Immigration

You fell in love long before your wedding day. When you tied the knot at last, you were overjoyed. Since the two of you lived in different countries, you spent a lot of time apart. You were very happy to make the marriage official since it meant you could look forward to much more time together in the future.

That said, you have a nagging worry. You’re always a bit concerned that the government could declare your marriage invalid. Is this possible? Are you right to worry?

Marriage fraud

The truth is that there are a few reasons that the government can declare a marriage to be fraudulent or invalid. After all, as much as popular culture equates marriage with love and commitment, it’s really just a legal process. During that process, you sign a contract. If this was done in an illegal manner, it may not stand the test of time.

One of the main ways that this happens is when they believe that you just got married so that one of you — whoever was not a U.S. citizen — could get a green card and immigrate to the United States. While the government does want to keep families together, and that is why they give green cards to spouses in the first place, they’re interested in uniting real families that chose to be together regardless of their immigration status. They don’t want people to get married just for the sake of legal immigration.

It’s an interesting stance to take. Throughout human history, people have extensively married for reasons that did not include “falling in love.” Kings and queens often married to form political and military alliances, for instance. Many people tried to marry up into classes higher than their own.

Even so, this is the position that the government takes on green card marriages. And that does give them the power to decide that your marriage is fraudulent.

Navigating the system

If you are worried about losing your marriage or your immigration status, you need to be well aware of the legal options you have. It’s a complex system, but you can navigate it with an experienced legal team on your side.