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LGBT's Immigration Matters and Rights

In Obergefell v. Hodges, same-sex marriage in 50 states was legalized. Same-sex marriages are handled as same as heterosexual marriages for all legal matters. Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, and Transgender (LGBT) individuals have the same immigration rights as straight couples.


Regardless of whether your spouse or fiancé is legally residing in the U.S. or still living abroad, you can now take full benefits of immigration programs. For instance, a man who is a current U.S. citizen can apply to bring his husband to the US under the same visa petition that a heterosexual couple would use. If a gay immigrant spouse or fiancé is already in the United States legally, the process of applying for a green card will be exactly the same.

LGBT's Immigration Benefits

As a US citizen or lawful permanent resident, you can sponsor your spouse for a family-based visa, green card, or naturalization, the same way as opposite-sex couples. USCIS no longer discriminates between gay couples and straight couples.


As a US citizen, you may petition for a fiancé or fiancée visa for your same-sex partner. If all other immigration requirements are met, they may enter the US for marriage.


If you and your spouse were married in a place that recognizes same-sex marriage and you live in a state that does not recognize gay marriage, you are entitled to all federal immigration benefits.


If you previously filed for immigration benefits but were denied benefits based on the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), you may ask the USCIS to reconsider the petition. We can help you.

Asylum If Persecuted For Sexual Orientation

Some nonimmigrants living in the US want to stay in the US because returning to their homeland may expose them to persecution and other harm. Some countries, societies, and communities do not accept LGBT people. If you are from a country that persecutes or otherwise marginalizes you because of your sexual orientation or gender, you may be eligible for asylum. If you are granted asylum in the US, you will become a green card holder. We can help you.


We'd like to help you live in the US as an LGBT-friendly office.

Please contact us or visit our office.


Transgender People's Rights

Transgender people may face a high risk of harm if they return to their country of origin. For example, they may get persecution or discrimination in their countries.

Deportation Defense for Transgender Immigrants

Although trans people living in the US who are not citizens, permanent residents, or do not have proper documentation, they have some ways to legalize their stay in the U.S. According to he 1951 United Nations Refugee Convention, the US cannot deport individuals who will face harm due to their identity. For example, people who are trans or in the process of sexual reassignment cannot be deported.


Transgender Couple's Rights

In Obergefell v Hodges, this case eliminates any conditions for marriage that are based on gender. Transgender spouses seeking to immigrate to the U.S. have the same rights as other same-sex or heterosexual spouses do. While the rights are the same on paper, transgender immigrants face unique challenges and are often discriminated against.


Asylum for Transgender

Trans people may be eligible for asylum if they apply within one year of their arrival in the US. This rule is problematic for some trans people because they either have not completed their transformation, were afraid to be who they are, or did not undergo certain therapies related to their gender. But there are exceptions. Transgender people can apply for asylum even if one year has passed. We can help you.


If Not Eligible for Asylum

If you are not eligible for asylum, you may be eligible for withholding of removal. Withholding of removal stops your physical deportation to the country where you will face harm. It allows you to legally work in the US and obtain a social security number(SSN).


With withholding of removal, you are not allowed to travel outside the US unless you have advance parole. We can help you get advance parole.

Withholding of Removal and Marriage to a US Citizen

If you were granted withholding of removal and subsequently married a United States citizen, we can petition the immigration court to reopen your case to adjust your status. Then, you file I485 and you can get a green card.


For instance, if you entered the country without inspection you will not be able to adjust your status unless you are 245(i) eligible or have been granted "parole in place". You cannot simply adjust your status through USCIS because when you were granted withholding of removal, the judge also entered a removal order against you.


Victims of Crime

Some trans people are victims of crime. They may be eligible for a U visa. We can help you get a U visa and get a green card later.


Victims of Human Trafficking

Some trans people are victims of human trafficking. They may be eligible for a T visa. We can help you get a T visa and get a green card later.

We'd like to help you live in the US as an LGBT-friendly office.

Please contact us or visit our office.


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