Understanding the International Marriage Broker Regulation Act

March 3, 2016

The International Marriage Broker Regulation Act (IMBRA) is a statute relevant to the fiancé visa application process. Under this law, an international marriage broker is defined as an organization that charges fees for providing dating and matchmaking services between U.S. citizens and foreign nationals. Dating services that provide comparable services to users regardless of their country of origin and gender are excluded from the definition of marriage broker. The IMBRA places disclosure requirements on both the U.S. citizen petitioner and the international marriage broker. For U.S. citizen petitioners that have used a dating website to meet their fiancé(e), it is important to check the Terms of Use of such a site to determine if it is subject to the disclosure requirements of IMBRA.

IMBRA requires a marriage broker to provide criminal history information about a U.S. client to a foreign client. A broker must also obtain the foreign client’s written consent before disclosing his or her personal information to the U.S. client. On the U.S. petitioner’s side, disclosure of certain violent and abuse-related criminal convictions is required and a limit is imposed of how many fiancé petitions may be filed without a waiver.

Please contact us for an initial consultation if you have worked with a marriage broker service and you would like to file a petition for your foreign national fiancé(e).

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