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TCKB-07

This May be a Bit Complicated

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Hello, 

 

I am a USC engaged to a Ghanaian citizen. We have filed for him to come over on a B visa, his appointment is on the 6th of Feb. The plan was for us to get married, traditionally, at my family's home and we will be moving to Ghana in May. I see, after reading through the threads, that Ghana is hard to get through. So this plan may need to be readjusted. 

 

Here is the complication: He is a chief and I will be his second wife. He has what they call a "stool wife." I told him that because of this, our marriage would never be valid in the US and he would never get a green card, as a result. He is fine with that, but as a retired Veteran, I am not. There are certain benefits that I would like for us to use together-namely Space A flights for free and health insurance. My questions are: 

 

1. Since we are having a customary wedding, which is legit in Ghana, would it be legit in the US as well? 

    I ask, because his first marriage is very much an arrangement. He has to be married to be a chief...If he were to divorce at a later date, would our customary marriage be considered a marriage in the states and therefore null because he had a wife before me? Or would it not be valid under US law and therefore, we could "remarry" at a later date in a way that is recognized by the US?  

 

2. If we can overcome #1, would being a retiree with non-taxable income make it impossible to sponsor him on a spousal visa? And would me having lived in Ghana for years and not the US also create difficulty? 

 

I hope this makes sense. Thanks in advance. 
 

 

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7 minutes ago, TCKB-07 said:

Hello, 

 

I am a USC engaged to a Ghanaian citizen. We have filed for him to come over on a B visa, his appointment is on the 6th of Feb. The plan was for us to get married, traditionally, at my family's home and we will be moving to Ghana in May. I see, after reading through the threads, that Ghana is hard to get through. So this plan may need to be readjusted. 

 

Here is the complication: He is a chief and I will be his second wife. He has what they call a "stool wife." I told him that because of this, our marriage would never be valid in the US and he would never get a green card, as a result. He is fine with that, but as a retired Veteran, I am not. There are certain benefits that I would like for us to use together-namely Space A flights for free and health insurance. My questions are: 

 

1. Since we are having a customary wedding, which is legit in Ghana, would it be legit in the US as well? 

    I ask, because his first marriage is very much an arrangement. He has to be married to be a chief...If he were to divorce at a later date, would our customary marriage be considered a marriage in the states and therefore null because he had a wife before me? Or would it not be valid under US law and therefore, we could "remarry" at a later date in a way that is recognized by the US?  

 

2. If we can overcome #1, would being a retiree with non-taxable income make it impossible to sponsor him on a spousal visa? And would me having lived in Ghana for years and not the US also create difficulty? 

 

I hope this makes sense. Thanks in advance. 
 

 

1.  No since bigamy and polygamy is not allowed.  

 

2.  Bigamy and polygamy is not allowed.

Edited by aaron2020

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Not sure how likely it is that the US Consulate would issue a B for a polygamous marriage.

 

To be fair I do not recollect anybody ever asking such a question.


“If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles. If you know yourself but not the enemy, for every victory gained you will also suffer a defeat. If you know neither the enemy nor yourself, you will succumb in every battle.”

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16 minutes ago, aaron2020 said:

1.  No since bigamy and polygamy is not allowed.  

 

2.  Bigamy and polygamy is not allowed.

I'm aware that polygamy is not legal in the US. This is kind of the basis of my questions. If our customary marriage would not be recognized, even if he wasn't married, then it kind of mean weren't married in the eyes of the US, anyway, right? Kind of like too married for K1, but not married enough for the CR1? 

 

However, if the customary marriage would be recognized, if he weren't already married, it's the polygamy that makes the marriage invalid. It's only invalid if it is even recognized, correct? 

 

I never imagined myself having to consider such things, but here I am. 

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1 minute ago, TCKB-07 said:

I'm aware that polygamy is not legal in the US. This is kind of the basis of my questions. If our customary marriage would not be recognized, even if he wasn't married, then it kind of mean weren't married in the eyes of the US, anyway, right? Kind of like too married for K1, but not married enough for the CR1? 

 

However, if the customary marriage would be recognized, if he weren't already married, it's the polygamy that makes the marriage invalid. It's only invalid if it is even recognized, correct? 

 

I never imagined myself having to consider such things, but here I am. 

A traditional marriage would be legal in Ghana.  As long as everything stays in Ghana where it's legal, then you don't have a problem.  Asking the US government for anything (B visa to come to the US to enter into a polygamous marriage, veteran benefits, etc.) is where you would get into trouble since polygamy is illegal in the US.

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Just now, Boiler said:

Not sure how likely it is that the US Consulate would issue a B for a polygamous marriage.

 

To be fair I do not recollect anybody ever asking such a question.

He would not only be coming here for the marriage. The original plan was to get married in Ghana, but decided to do it at my family's because it's more traditional. The application says we are going to visit sites here in Hawaii and visit family. He has family in the US already. 

 

I'm sure most wouldn't ask. Many find out their husbands have a wife at home, after the fact. it took me a minute to digest it, but after speaking with enough trusted people, I became more comfortable with it. 

 

Thank you. 

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1 minute ago, aaron2020 said:

A traditional marriage would be legal in Ghana.  As long as everything stays in Ghana where it's legal, then you don't have a problem.  Asking the US government for anything (B visa to come to the US to enter into a polygamous marriage, veteran benefits, etc.) is where you would get into trouble since polygamy is illegal in the US.

Thank you for your reply. The B visa wasn't for the purpose to get married, initially. This is something we discussed after already applying for it. Perhaps to original plan to do it in Ghana is better. Obviously, there would be no paperwork, just a paid dowery to my family and a flight back to Ghana. 

 

If he were to get divorced, and he and I remarried in a way that was recognized by the US sometime down the line, would that pose a problem? 

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Why go to the expense of bringing him here (assuming that he is even granted a visa in the first place, which is doubtful) for a marriage that is not only not recognized but also illegal. You would be knowingly participating in a crime. Why would you even consider that? 


 

 

 

 

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2 minutes ago, aaron2020 said:

Where's your family?  In the US?  Then, he is seeking a B-2 visa to come to the US to enter into a polygamous marriage which is ILLEGAL.

 

You are mistaking a traditional marriage where a person is too married for a K-1 and not married enough for a CR-1 with what you want to do.  In the former case, there is ONLY ONE MARRIAGE - nothing illegal.  You want to enter into a polygamous marriage in the US which is ILLEGAL.  BIG DIFFERENCE.

I understand what you are saying. Yes, they're in the US.  I think my confusion is coming from the idea that I was thinking that even if we get married at my family's house, it will be a traditional Ghanaian wedding, where it would not be registered with anyone, but performed on US soil. Many people call it an engagement and then have their "white wedding" as well. So I was thinking no one but our families would know we are married, by traditional customs. There would be no "white wedding" which is the one that is usually legally binding in other parts of the world- unless I'm mistaken. 

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He will have to declare he is married on the application.


“If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles. If you know yourself but not the enemy, for every victory gained you will also suffer a defeat. If you know neither the enemy nor yourself, you will succumb in every battle.”

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1 minute ago, JFH said:

Why go to the expense of bringing him here (assuming that he is even granted a visa in the first place, which is doubtful) for a marriage that is not only not recognized but also illegal. You would be knowingly participating in a crime. Why would you even consider that? 

I'm moving to Ghana where the marriage is not a crime. It's just traditionally, it is performed at that woman's family's home and he being a traditional ruler, he wanted to do things the traditional way as much as possible. We applied for the visitors visa for him to visit before we discussed his desire to perform the ceremony at my family's home, so that was not the intent of the B visa. He has never been to the US and meeting my family is important to him as I have already met his. He doesn't know US law, and I never thought I would find myself in this situation, so I am trying to figure it out. 

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1 minute ago, TCKB-07 said:

I'm moving to Ghana where the marriage is not a crime. It's just traditionally, it is performed at that woman's family's home and he being a traditional ruler, he wanted to do things the traditional way as much as possible. We applied for the visitors visa for him to visit before we discussed his desire to perform the ceremony at my family's home, so that was not the intent of the B visa. He has never been to the US and meeting my family is important to him as I have already met his. He doesn't know US law, and I never thought I would find myself in this situation, so I am trying to figure it out. 

It doesn’t matter where you are moving to. It’s illegal in the USA to marry in the USA someone who you know is already married (regardless of where they are from or what kind of wedding they had). That’s the point you missed. 


 

 

 

 

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Just now, TCKB-07 said:

I'm moving to Ghana where the marriage is not a crime. It's just traditionally, it is performed at that woman's family's home and he being a traditional ruler, he wanted to do things the traditional way as much as possible. We applied for the visitors visa for him to visit before we discussed his desire to perform the ceremony at my family's home, so that was not the intent of the B visa. He has never been to the US and meeting my family is important to him as I have already met his. He doesn't know US law, and I never thought I would find myself in this situation, so I am trying to figure it out. 

OMG!!!!  THE INTENT OF HIM GETTING A B-2 VISA NOW IS TO COME TO THE US TO ENTER INTO A POLYGAMOUS MARRIAGE.

 

WHAT YOU WANT IS ILLEGAL.  


 

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