Many immigrants seeking to become permanent residents and eventual United States citizens through the naturalization process have done so after marrying a United States citizen. Unfortunately, thousands of marriages have turned out to be fake or “sham.” Because so many people have tried to manipulate the system, the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has cracked down, and set forth stricter measures to prove that marriages are legitimate.
After you or your spouse has applied for adjustment of status based on marriage, you will be subject to an interview process where an immigration officer will ask questions to validate your marriage. In some cases, spouses are separated to see if the answers provided turn out to be different. To ensure that you have everything you need to “pass” your interview, you should be prepared and bring the following documents with you as evidence of your lawful marriage:
• Marriage certificate/license;
• Photographs of both spouses, by yourselves and with family members;
• Joint billing statements, utility bills and proof of joint memberships to gyms, churches and other organizations;
• Affidavits from family members, friends, fellow churchgoers, employers and co-workers validating that you are a legitimately married couple;
• Documents showing that one spouse has changed his or her last name to match the last name of the other spouse (while this is not required, it substantially helps in having an application for adjustment of status approved); and
• Emails, letters, greeting cards, and other written documents between both spouses to prove continuous communication from the time the spouses met, to the time of marriage, and up to the interview date
While the interview process to adjust citizenship status based on marriage can certainly be stressful and even frightening, if you prepare as much as you can to prove to USCIS that you are a legitimately married couple and deserve to be residents of the United States, you should have no trouble getting an application for adjustment of status approved.
Be prepared for very bizarre questions. Some immigration officers may ask strange questions to throw you off. For example, one immigration officer asked a newly married couple about pictures that were brought to the interview. There were pictures from the night the couple met. The immigration officer asked: “Why did you take pictures with each other the same night that you met?” The couple was somewhat perplexed by the question, but merely responded that they always had taken pictures when they went out, had just met and wanted to take pictures together. What more could the couple say about the pictures? There’s no pattern to why certain questions are asked in the interview process, but being prepared for anything and staying calm is the best thing a newly married couple can do.
Contact Geygan & Geygan Today for a Free Case Evaluation
If you or your spouse is seeking to adjust your immigrant status on the basis of marriage, contact our highly experienced Ohio immigration attorneys at Geygan & Geygan, Ltd. as soon as possible. The interview process is very important to any application for an adjustment of immigrant status. Having an attorney by your side will send a message to USCIS that you and your spouse are legitimately married and are serious about being upstanding United States residents. Further, having one of our attorneys by your side will provide you with some comfort and confidence, making the interview process less stressful. To schedule your free case evaluation, call our office at 513-791-1673, or you may contact us online to schedule your appointment. We look forward to helping you get on the right path to permanent resident status and citizenship.