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    My brother came here (U.S.A.) as a tourist with his wife in 1996. They were already married, but they want to have a religious ceremony administered by a pastor. To make the long story short, they got married, and I believe the administering pastor registered them as a married couple in the city court.
    They went back to her country and lived there for 3 years, then got divorced. Now my brother is in the process of marrying a USC. Does he have to get divorce here too? Will there be any problem if they get married without filing for divorce here?

  • #2

    You do not mention if your brother is a USC?


    • #3
      No..he's not.


      • #4

        o.k. so your brother and his wife were married in their native country, came to the states and had a civil ceremony? I am curious as to why he felt the need to have a cicil ceremony here in the US. Is his ex-wife a USC? Was this ceremony, in the States, for the benefit of relatives here that did no get to attend a ceremony in the native country?

        I take it your brother is here in the states now. Or is he back home? Where is home?

        First of all you/they need to find out if a marraige certificate was ever filed here in the states. Assuming that your brothers ex-wife is not a USC, and that the pastor did indeed file a marraige certificate with the court. I am sure that you will need to file a copy here in the states.

        I would recommend calling the county clerks office where your brother/fiance is living, and ask to speak to someone in civil matters, specifically someone regarding marraige certificates. They may refer them to the state ad county that he and his ex-wife were married in. The reason I say this is because each state has different regulations and standards. I think it safe to say that it would be a good idea for your brother and his fiance to file a certified copy of his divorce papers at the county clerks office. (either the one in which the ceremony was held in or the one he plans to marry in)


        • #5
          First of all..thanks for the informations.
          My brother is Chinese, his ex-wife is Japanese (Catholic), they had civil wedding in Japan. She wants to have a more solemn wedding, so when they came here in U.S. to visit us, they decided to have a religious ceremony here...with me and my relatives help, we invited a minister, and had a garden wedding.
          I called the county clerk, and yes they were registered here in North Carolina. My brother is coming next month to marry a USC. They are planning to live and marry in Texas.
          His fiancee does not know about the wedding here.


          • #6

            O.K. first of all your brother I am quite sure will need to get a translated, certified divorce decree from the country in which they got the divorce. Did you per chance ask the clerk's office, there in NC, about whether he would need to file a copy of his divorce decree there?

            Secondly, his fiance needs to knwo about the ceremony, for one simply out of honesty (I don't mean to impart morality here, sorry), and secondly she can assist. Either you or her need to do one of two things. Call the clerk's office in the county they plan to marry in, in Texas and ask if they need to file a copy of the divorce decree there. Take into account that since this is an odd situation, they may not know the answer. Leading you to the second task. She may need to set up consultation with a family law attorney to find out what exactly needs to be done. I do not forsee any great expense here since he is legally divorced, all they are needing to do is make sure that they have everything in order.

            You see, normally when remarrying, had he gotton a divorce here in the US, this would not be a problem because you already have the divorce decree filed at the time the divorce is granted by the judge, but being that he divorce in another country, I am sure that steps need to be taken. This could be something as simple as having the divorce degree (certified and translated) with him when they go to get their marraige licence in Texas.

            Out of curiosity, is he comming back over on a fiance visa?


            • #7
              He's coming as a the way they have a 2 year old daughter. I am not certain, if she granted him full custody. She is not really fully interested in taking care of her.
              The clerk needs the copy of the divorced paper. The problem brother is not believing us, that he needs to do this. Somebody is telling him that he does not have to do this and he can literally get away with this.
              Will the INS/Immigration find about this when he apply for GC.? Maybe I can use this to scare him.

              Again you'd been very helpful.


              • #8
                You need to impress upon him the importance of taking all precautions. What does he have to lose by bringing a certified translated divorce decree. If he does not bring what he needs, and his questioned about previous marraiges, they will certainly ask him when and where he was divorced. In that he was divorced in another country, he will certainly need to show proof, If he does not have proof, plans will be delayed.

                Secondly, as the plot thickens, if he is planning to bring his daughter here to live, he needs to have legal paperworkd there as well. Not only in regards to custody papers, but written, legal, acknowledgment that the mother is aware and agrees to the father taking the child out of the country to live. He may think that he does not need them, but in an effort to show everyone involved, the child's mother, the fiance, THE INS that everything is legit and that he is going to play by the rules. It would be in his best interest to have more then what he may think he needs then less.

                This country does not take kindly to kidnapping, and should he not have legal paperwork regarding the daughter, and the birth mother cited that the father kidnapped the child and brought her to the states, he will without a doubt be in trouble.

                Secondly, why isn't he coming on a fiance visa? By coming on a tourist visa, and getting married while here is a little diseptive. Coming on a fiance visa would be more honest. It's his business, just curious.


                • #9
                  He is no doubt very secretive...I do not know why.

                  I will paste this particular discussion...then I will force him to read it.
                  Thanks...and have a very nice day.


                  • #10
                    You are very welcome Jeng.

                    It really would be a good idea if your brother's fiance consulted with an family/divorce attorney just to make sure that they get everything straight the first time around.

                    I wish them the best.


                    • #11
                      What he is doing is illegal.

                      You are NOT allowed to enter the US as a tourist and plan on getting married.

                      Also: it will ask him when he applies for his green card if he has ever been married. He will have to provide a divorce decree to the INS.

                      He can try to get around all these laws but he is taking a big risk in having things get very complicated once he is married and applies for his GC.

                      What he really should do is postpone the wedding, get a divorce here in the US, apply for a fiance visa.

                      Potentially if he doesn't have full custody of his child, he is looking into a lot of problems where the AOS for the child is concerned. I'm sure he wants to make sure that the child won't have many problems.

                      He needs to have his first marriage sorted and settled, the custody sorted (if it's not). This will take more time than 1 month but it'll be a lot less of a headache that way.


                      • #12
                        Thank for your input Marie, now maybe his brother will take it more seriously!


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