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Immigration benefits and visas for same-sex spouses

At this time, USCIS and U.S. Consulates treat same-sex spouses in the same way as opposite gender spouses. For more specific information about U.S. visas and/or immigration status in the U.S., please refer to our webpages on immigration law.

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Modification of child support upon birth of another child

Q:  I am paying child support for the child from my first marriage. Now I have another child with a different woman. Would this fact be figured into support? (Brad, Los Angeles, California) A:  Yes, the fact that you are also supporting another child should be taken into consideration when determining the amount of child support. However, if your […]

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Does it matter which spouse files for divorce first?

No, usually it does not matter who files for divorce first. The court in California does not give any preference or disadvantage based on whether you are a Petitioner (first person to file) or Respondent.

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No possibility of a K-1 visa for a fiancé or fiancée of the U.S. permanent resident alien

Q: I have a “green card.” My fiancée is Russian and she lives in Russia. Will I be able to help my fiancée to obtain a K-1 visa, so that we get married in the United States? (Donald, from Los Angeles, CA) A: No, you will not. A fiancé(e) visa is available to a person […]

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Divorce Case Information

Q: My husband filed for divorce in California several years ago. Before the case was finished, I moved out of state. How do I find out whether anything has been filed in my case and whether I am divorced? (Anna, Ukraine) A: Go to the courthouse where you had your case and check their records and your file […]

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Green Card Through Marriage

Q: I am a U.S. citizen. My wife lives in the U.S. and I want her to become legal. What do I do?                                                                                                              Alex, Los Angeles, California A: Normally, you would file with the U. S. Citizenship and Immigration Services an I-130 (Petition for Alien Relative) petition for your wife, together with I-485 (Application to Adjust […]

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Divorce in California if only one spouse resides in CA

Q: I got married in Russia several years ago. Now I live in California. My wife is still in Russia and we have been separated for over 8 years. I want to get married to another woman. Do I need to get a divorce first? I do not have a Green Card, would I still be able to get […]

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Validity of Foreign Marriage

Q: My fiancé is the United States citizen (he lives in California). We want to get married in Russia. Will the marriage be valid in the United States? (Kristina, from Moscow, Russia) A: Generally, marriages which are legally performed and valid abroad are also legally valid in the United States. If you are planning to […]

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Name change upon marriage

Q: Am I allowed to change my middle name upon marriage? (Maria, from Santa Monica, CA) A: Yes, you are. California Family Code section 306.5(b)(1) provides that one party or both parties to a marriage may elect to change the middle or last names, or both, by which that party wishes to be known after […]

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What happens if the Response to the Petition for Dissolution of Marriage is not filed?

If the respondent does not file the necessary responding paperwork (usually, the Response) within 30 days of service, the petitioner may request an entry of default. The divorce proceeding can then be completed without any participation of the respondent.

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