Godoy Olivieri, Ltd.-An immigration law firm
An Immigration law FIRM
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312-445-0591 800-264-2752

"I am a repeat client of Godoy Olivieri, Ltd. I will definitely continue to use Godoy Olivieri, Ltd. in the future. Every Time I have a legal need Godoy Olivieri, Ltd. has been there to help guide me through. I would recommend them to all my friends and family."

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Former Client

Will same-sex couples in Illinois have immigration rights?

Immigration and same-sex marriage have been among the most-discussed issues over the last few years. Although efforts to include provisions for same-sex couples in federal immigration reform haven’t succeeded, a recent U.S. Supreme Court ruling might address the concerns of binational same-sex couples in Illinois.

The Supreme Court’s decision struck down most of the federal Defense of Marriage Act -- known popularly as DOMA -- which means that those who are legally married to a same-sex partner may now be able to sponsor them to apply for a marriage-based visa and permanent residency. Even though Illinois law only recognizes domestic partnerships for same-sex couples, one observer notes that being “wed legally in a state or country that allows it” is likely enough to begin the process to obtain a green card.

The full family immigration implications of the decision still have to be sorted out by federal officials. Regardless, this change could be quite important for families in the Chicago area.

Of course, this opens the door for permanent residency -- and the possibility of citizenship after three years -- for many people, but it doesn’t mean that complications won’t arise. Observers note that just because a married couple applies for permanent residency it doesn’t mean that officials will automatically grant it. Immigration law is notoriously complex, and the high court’s ruling doesn’t change that.

Knowing that visa-related issues can become a stumbling block for any married couple working through the family immigration process, it may be best to consult an attorney. Being married is something to celebrate, so many couples probably don’t want immigration issues to put a damper on their new lives together.

Source: San Francisco Chronicle, “Sorting out legal rights in same-sex marriages,” Kathleen Pender, June 30, 2013

Godoy Olivieri, Ltd.-An immigration law firm

2021 Midwest Road
Suite 200
Oak Brook, IL 60523
312-445-0591 local
800-264-2752 toll free
630-705-5258 fax
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1655 S. Blue Island Ave.
Suite 300
Chicago, IL. 60608
312-445-0591 local
800-264-2752 toll free
630-705-5258 fax
Map & Directions