Things to consider before marrying a foreigner.
Every year thousands of military members from all services make the decision to a marry their foreign boyfriend or
girlfriend. While asking the big question may seem difficult for most people the real challenge comes after they say “I
do” as immigration laws require time and money to get your new spouse into the USA so planing is crucial to avoid
long periods of separation due to the military service member having to PCS and the spouse not able to travel at the
time of a PCS. Many service members still think that a foreigner can travel to the USA with a military dependent ID
and a marriage certificate but this is not true as the only way to travel to the states is with a valid fiancée visa,
immigrant visa or green card.
Military Marriage Application– There are different policies that are put in place by overseas Commands to protect
the service member and his or her career as there can be consequences to marrying citizens of certain countries and
or negative family history, those consequences include loosing the ability to obtain or keep a security clearance and
difficulties obtaining a dependent ID. Service members stationed in the Republic of Korea are required to submit an
application for marriage through their chain of Command, complete counseling sessions with the local Chaplin and
interview with the company Commander before they can get married.
Immigration facts– If you want to take your future spouse to get married in the USA then you must submit USCIS
Application I-129F Petition for fiancée visaThe I-129F should be submitted at least 6 months before the expected
travel date and will cost $ 340 to process. If you are already married then you must submit Application I-130 Petition
for Alien Relative. The I-130 should also be submitted at least 6 months before the expected travel date and at a cost
of $420. The spouse will be given a interview date at the local U.S. Consulate or embassy after the petition gets
approved. The 6 month period is just an average but can take longer if there is additional information needed by
USCIS so be sure to provide all of the needed information the first time.
Other Considerations– Remember that you are marrying a person from a foreign country, culture, beliefs and
traditions not to mention that you will also marry the family so really think before you ask. How you met the person
also influences the future of your relationship, for example:
Soldier meets juicy girl at the “Ville” just outside of Camp Casey in Korea, Soldier falls in love with the Juicy and
decides to buy out her contract with the bar so that he can marry the Juicy girl which is not a smart move because for
one, it is illegal to buy a person and participate in human trafficking especially if you are a member of the military not
to mention that you are going to marry a person whose job is to get Soldiers drunk and get them to dump all of their
money at the bar, what do you think will happen after she gets her green card? You don’t have to be a genius to
figure this out.
Adapting to life in the U.S. Can also put strain on young relationship as the cultural and language change can
overwhelm a foreign spouse causing fights and depression. Patience and proper planing can save the couple some
heartache and help strengthen their relationship. The bottom line is that marrying a foreigner is not an easy task and
a huge commitment so you must be sure to take all of the pros and cons into consideration because if not, you are
just wasting your time.