So you have an alien (non-U.S. citizen) spouse who still lives in his/her county, or who lives here in the US, but has visas other than Green Card.
There are mainly 4 requirements for you as a U.S.citizen or a legal permanent resident to apply for Green Card based on your marriage.
1. The petitioner is a U.S. citizen or a legal Permanent Resident.
2. The marriage is legal in the US.
3. The petitioner has enough income to support his/her alien spouse.
4. The married couple reside in the US.
So, #3 requires the petitioner to have enough income to support his/her alien spouse, because sometimes, the alien spouse may not have working permit to start working and earning some income for the house hold for several months.
And you are wondering "How much is ENOUGH?"
This is what USCIS is looking for. You must demonstrate that the petitioner can support the foreign national at a level no less than 125% of the federal poverty income level.
For 2018, the poverty level of 100% range from $24,690 for a household size of 2 to $47,070 for a household size of 4 (varying depending on your locality).
You can check the poverty level that you are looking for here.
If you were members of the armed services on active duty, you are required only to show that you have an annual income equal to at least 100% of the poverty income level.
So what can you do if you were unemployed or laid off unexpectedly, or disabled and have limited income?
In such situations, you could find a joint sponsor. A joint sponsor is a person who accepts joint and several liability with the petitioner. He/she needs to demonstrate the same income requirement as above. It can be your parent or your sibling, or whoever accepts the liability with you.
The #3 requirement does not look so difficult to meet, once you find out how much income is actually required.
If you had any immigration law questions for your marriage-based visa application or other immigration law, please feel free to contact us. We offer FREE consultation and personal legal services for affordable price.