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IsabelleFredrick

marrying on a tourist visa - stay length question

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If I visit my fiance on a tourist visa, and get married in the visit, can I then stay for 6 months after marrying, until the tourist visa states I need to return home? 

How long do I need to stay home before I can return to stay with him for another 6 months? 

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Posted (edited)

1. You can stay as long as you're allowed to on the border. Might be 6 months, you might get 2 weeks. 

2. You need to spend more time in your country than in the US. If you spend 6 months in the US you shouldn't be coming back for at least another 6 months. But to be honest you'll be living in the US at this point not being a tourist and immigration people are not idiots. Big chance you'll be denied entry for another long trip. 

Edited by Roel

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Really, how long you stay is up to the immigration officer. In fact a visa does not even guarantee entry at all; it's all up to the immigration officer. If at port of entry the IO thinks you are spending too much time in the US than in your own country he can deny you entry. 

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A tourist visa is for visiting, not living in the USA in 6-month installments. There’s no guarantee you will be allowed to stay for 6 months when you arrive. You will be inspected hy CBP and if the agent feels that 2 weeks is ample, you will be granted weeks of authorized stay. You must maintain ties to home. What job do you have there that allows you to travel for 6 months? 


 

 

 

 

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Look at it this way.  At the US point of entry when the CBP officer asks you the purpose of your visit, and you honestly say, "to get married to my US citizen boyfriend and stay in the US for six months," there's a very good chance that you will be denied entry.  If you say "to get married to my US citizen boyfriend, stay for two weeks for the wedding and honeymoon, and then return to my home country to wait out the spousal visa process," there is a much better chance that you will be allowed in.  And don't take a chance and lie--others have tried this and been searched, including their luggage and phone, and if that happens you will be caught and you may not be allowed in the US for a very long time.  Is that worth the risk?

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I thought the OP had a child?


“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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3 hours ago, carmel34 said:

Look at it this way.  At the US point of entry when the CBP officer asks you the purpose of your visit, and you honestly say, "to get married to my US citizen boyfriend and stay in the US for six months," there's a very good chance that you will be denied entry.  If you say "to get married to my US citizen boyfriend, stay for two weeks for the wedding and honeymoon, and then return to my home country to wait out the spousal visa process," there is a much better chance that you will be allowed in.  And don't take a chance and lie--others have tried this and been searched, including their luggage and phone, and if that happens you will be caught and you may not be allowed in the US for a very long time.  Is that worth the risk?

In these situations, one is no more required to mention that one item on their itinerary is marriage, even their own, than they are to mention they might visit a public library.  A truthful generic answer is advised when asked the purpose of your visit.  You are also allowed to change your plans after entry.  Don't lie, but don't make problems for yourself either.

 

A little story to illustrate.  

 

I "live" in the Philippines.  I "live" here on a tourist visa, that can be extended in 1, 2 or 6 month increments for up to three years.  However, when I arrive in the Philippines, I am required to have either a round trip ticket or a ticket flying "onward".  The airline will insist on seeing evidence of such a ticket before allowing me to board.  The last two times I arrived in the Philippines (16 months apart) I just bought one way tickets to Hong Kong 28 days out, on Orbitz, just before leaving for the airport.  Since they have 24 hour free cancel, I cancelled the tickets within 24 hours so they cost nothing.

 

First time, the Philippine port of entry did not ask for it, but on my last entry 10 days ago, they did.  I just show them the confirmation email and good to go.  The Philippines Bureau of Immigration requires this to show that you can afford to leave at some point.  In the US, if asked to see a round trip or onward ticket, showing them one six months out, can trigger additional questions, like how you will be supporting yourself for that long.  Be aware, and perhaps solve this with evidence you plan to leave in some reasonable time frame, even though your plans may change.

 

 


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