Department of Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano on Monday formalized the end of the ban on gay married couples being able to receive green cards based on their marriage.
The move followed news this weekend that at least one such petition — for a Florida couple married in New York — had been approved.
In a statement, Napolitano said:
After last week’s decision by the Supreme Court holding that Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) is unconstitutional, President Obama directed federal departments to ensure the decision and its implication for federal benefits for same-sex legally married couples are implemented swiftly and smoothly. To that end, effective immediately, I have directed U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) to review immigration visa petitions filed on behalf of a same-sex spouse in the same manner as those filed on behalf of an opposite-sex spouse.