Can I bring my same-sex spouse or intended to the U.S.?

Same-sex marriage is now the law of the land in the United States. Not everyone in every state warmly embraces the notion, but it remains the law, including in Kentucky. As we have noted in at least one other post, love cannot be legislated.

Where marriages involving immigrants are concerned, the U.S. government’s rules provide for ways to obtain a green card for a spouse. It isn’t always easy, and the help of a skilled attorney can help provide the best likelihood of success.

The element of same-sex marriage has a way of further complicating the processes. That’s because the U.S. government’s rules regarding the handling of marriage visas for gay or lesbian spouses depends heavily on the laws of where the marriage took place.

23 countries allow same-sex marriage

If the “place of celebration” where the couple married recognizes the legality of the union, U.S. rules say an application for a marriage visa is possible. Importantly, it is the responsibility of the applicant to establish the validity of the marriage.

Most of the time, a marriage certificate is prima facie evidence of the marriage’s legitimacy. However, not every country in the world recognizes same-sex marriage. By one reliable count, the number stands at just 23.

Many Central and Northern European countries allow same-sex marriage, as do England, Wales, Ireland, Iceland and Greenland. Several South American countries recognize same-sex marriage, as does South Africa. In Mexico, such unions are allowed in only certain jurisdictions.

There are countries where homosexuality itself is illegal and punishable by death. That would suggest that it might be possible to seek a visa on a claim of asylum. That too is something worth discussing with an experienced attorney.



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