Long expected change is here due to June 26, 2013, Supreme Court decision in United States v. Windsor ending gay marriage discrimination.
Now legally married same sex couples may be eligible to apply for the U.S. nonimmigrant visas and for green cards based on the marriage.
Department of Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano said she was pleased to see the justices strike down parts of the Defense of Marriage Act. She said her agency, which oversees the visa application process for all foreigners, will now allow U.S. citizens to petition for their same-sex couples just like other married couples.
"This discriminatory law denied thousands of legally married same-sex couples many important federal benefits, including immigration benefits," Napolitano said in a statement. "Working with our federal partners, including the Department of Justice, we will implement today's decision so that all married couples will be treated equally and fairly in the administration of our immigration laws."
Same sex married couples must be legally married and proof their bona fide marriage. They would be eligible for non immigrant visas to follow their spouse and to apply for immigrant visas if their spouse is a U.S. citizen or U.S. lawful permanent resident, however many couples might be required to present heavy proof of bona fide marriage.
By: Tsirina Goroshit