What to Expect From a Marriage Interview

Becoming a U.S. citizen can be an overwhelming process no matter how well prepared you are. Luckily, if you’re applying for permanent residency (or a “green card”) through your U.S. spouse, the process is a bit more streamlined for you. However, being prepared for your application will ultimately help out in the long run; and will help you avoid any potential roadblocks to obtaining your permanent residency. 

Keep scrolling to read a bit more about how to obtain your green card through marriage to a U.S. citizen, and what the interview with the USCIS (United States Citizenship and Immigration Services) will be like.

 

Obtaining Permanent Residency Through Your Spouse

You may have already gone through these steps with your partner, but just to summarize briefly how to begin the process of obtaining a U.S. green card through a spouse:

  • Submit Form I-130, Petition for Alien Relative to the USCIS. Your spouse will need to also submit proof of the marriage with this application, such as a marriage certificate.
  • If you’re already in the U.S. (and have entered legally) you can adjust your status at the same time. Submit Form I-485, Application to Register Permanent Residency or Adjust Status along with Form I-130.
  • If you’re living outside of the United States, you’ll have to wait for your visa to be processed and approved. You’ll attend an interview at your nearest embassy or consulate. Once admitted into the U.S. you can then change your status by filing Form I-485.

 

The Marriage Interview

So you’ve filled out your forms and have received your marriage interview appointment time – what next? Generally speaking, the U.S. Government is mostly concerned about weeding out any sham marriages; or marriages that occur purely for an individual to obtain U.S. residency, and ultimately citizenship. 

 

The experience at a marriage interview can vary as it depends on the USCIS officer, as well as the specific USCIS office that pertains to you based on your location. It can also fluctuate depending on how much supporting evidence you and your spouse submitted when establishing the bonafides of your marriage.Your interviewer will likely ask questions such as: 

  • Where did you meet your spouse?
  • How many people attended your wedding?
  • What did you do for your spouse’s birthday?

 

However, the interview can ask you more complicated questions and/or tasks such as: having the applicant draw the setup of the couple’s bedroom; or ask what their spouse wore to bed the night before. It’s impossible to be completely prepared for every question the interviewer may ask you, but having as many photos and other supporting documentation on hand to prove your relationship is very helpful.

Once you have completed your marriage interview, the government will decide whether to approve your green card application. Once you have this, you will then need to satisfy residency and personal requirements before you can apply for your citizenship. 

If you think you, or your spouse, may be eligible to apply for a U.S. green card than it would be wise to first contact an attorney to review your application. Dominguez Law is an experienced law firm that can provide you with knowledge and quality advice on the entire process. Contact us today to learn more!

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