Immigration benefits, same-sex marriage and recent SCOTUS ruling

On June 26th 2015, the Supreme Court of the United States ruled in Obergefell v. Hodges that same-sex married couples have equal rights and protection of the law.  Thus, with a stroke of the SCOTUS pen, same-sex marriage is now legal in every state.

Over the past few days, our office has received a number of inquiries about how the decision impacts potential immigration petitions for same-sex spouses.  The latest string of queries leads us to believe that many were not aware that immigration benefits are already conferred to same-sex married couples.

In 2013 when the Supreme Court struck down a key part the Defense of Marriage Act, U.S. immigration benefits were extended to same-sex spouses.   The landmark case of U.S. vs. Windsor, was a game changer from an immigration perspective (among other things of course).

Not only can a US citizen apply for a green card for his or her same-sex spouse, temporary immigration benefits are also possible.

Here are some of our previous blog posts on these issues:

1. Same-sex couples can get green cards. 

2.  USCIS issues guidance for same-sex couples. 

We have been successful in helping many such cases to date. We are sorry to hear that there was confusion on the issue preventing many from applying for their loved ones from staying in the US. We hope that will now change and loved ones can now be united.


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