When a green card holder or US citizen from Illinois or another state marries an individual from another country, the individual from the other country may be interested in seeking a green card. If the couple has been married for less than two years, the green card will only provide conditional permanent resident status, meaning that it is only going to last for two years.

As it gets close to the time for the conditional two-year green card to expire, steps will need to be taken in order for the green card holder to continue to live in the United States legally. The individual will need to file an I-751 form and submit new evidence involving their marriage in order to apply for a 10-year green card.

When the time approaches for the two-year green card to expire, individuals need to be very careful when it comes to how they fill out their I-751 form and when they do so. They need to be sure there are no unanswered questions on the form, that all necessary documents and pieces of evidence are included and that the document is signed. If the form is being filed jointly, the names of both spouses need to be on the form.

If a couple is going to file jointly, the 751 petition needs to be submitted within 90 days of the green card expiring. It can be filed at any time if a person is filing the petition as an individual. Most individuals need to go through an in-person interview with USCIS when applying for marriage-based green cards.

Filing the I-751 form or any other immigration form requires a person to carefully prepare all documents and evidence. An individual may wish to speak to an attorney during this process. The attorney might answer questions about family immigration and the type of documentation that is needed for specific forms.