As you know, the last step of the marriage green card process is the interview which is scheduled by the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) if the spouse seeking a green card lives in the United States and by the National Visa Center (NVC) if they live abroad. I understand how hard and difficult this process is for many of you, so today we’re here to discuss how to prepare for your marriage-based green card interview. Although this interview may still be months away, knowing what to expect will help you feel more confident and prepared when that important day comes. So in this video, we will talk about preparing for the marriage-based green card interview so that you don’t experience a denial of your green card application.
Even if your marriage green card application is straightforward and free of red flags, the high stakes make a lot of applicants anxious. If you’re unable to sleep at night, envisioning all of the reasons why your application might be denied, remember that U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has the same goal as you and your spouse: ensuring that eligible couples with genuine marriages are able to live together in the United States.
Whether your interview will take place in the United States or abroad, the interviewing officer’s primary goal will be to determine whether your marriage is authentic — in other words, not based on fraud. Questions can focus on, for example, the history of your relationship, your daily activities as a married couple, and your future plans together.
Since you came this far and already filed your green card application with U.S Citizenship and Immigration Services USCIS, you may fear something may go wrong during the green card interview. Don’t worry! You are at the right place. Here, I will provide you with essential details to look out for during the green card interview and tips before attending the interview.
What Happens at the Interview?
The purpose of a marriage-based green card interview and the USCIS officer’s primary goal is to determine that your marriage is authentic. That’s why the officer will pay close attention to all detail in your and your spouse’s responses to the green card interview questions and the evidence you provide.
For example, some green card interview questions can focus on the history of your relationship, the everyday activities you practiced together as a couple, and plans you have already made or are thinking about. The interviewing officers will listen to you carefully and determine whether you sufficiently convinced them that your marriage is not fraudulent. If so, they will approve the spouse for a green card.
In some cases, each spouse can be interviewed separately, and the officer will compare their statements afterward to review for any inconsistencies.
What Question Do I Need to Answer at the Green Card Interview?
While you can never be certain about the questions that an interviewing officer will ask, here are some of the most typical questions that couples encounter, grouped by category:
YOUR RELATIONSHIP HISTORY
⦁ How did you meet?
⦁ Where did some of your first dates take place?
⦁ How long did you date before deciding to get married?
⦁ What is the story of your marriage proposal?
⦁ What was your wedding like?
⦁ Who attended your wedding?
⦁ What food was served?
⦁ Were there any special rituals performed? If so, what kind?
⦁ Did you go anywhere for your honeymoon? If so, where?
YOUR DAILY ROUTINES
⦁ What is daily life like for you and your spouse around the house?
⦁ How do you start your day?
⦁ How often do you text or talk on the phone when you’re apart?
⦁ Which of you likes to cook?
⦁ Which of you likes to clean?
YOUR KIDS (IF ANY)
⦁ How do your kids get to school?
⦁ Who are their friends?
⦁ What are their favorite foods?
⦁ Do they play any sports? If so, what?
YOUR PERSONAL HABITS AND NEEDS
⦁ What side of the bed do you sleep on?
⦁ Who snores?
⦁ What medications does your spouse take?
BIG EVENTS, RITUALS, OR CELEBRATIONS
⦁ When are your birthdays?
⦁ What did you do to celebrate?
⦁ What did you get each other as gifts?
⦁ What’s the most important holiday of the year in your household, and where do you typically celebrate it?
What Happens After the Interview?
If the USCIS officer establishes ineligibility at the visa interview, you can receive a notice of intent to deny on the spot. Do not feel discouraged because, before such a decision, you will generally have another opportunity to submit more evidence or clarify issues.
After the interview, there are four scenarios to expect:
1. Application Approval
2. Request for Evidence / Notice of Intent to Deny
3. Additional Review
4. The Second Interview
How Can An Immigration Attorney Help You?
The whole green card process can last for a long time, and an interview may be overwhelming for spouses by itself. This is why hiring a lawyer like myself from the beginning can be fruitful and save you lots of time.
An immigration attorney will approach your case individually, making sure the best strategy is in place. When it comes to marriage interviews, a lawyer can review the spouses’ backgrounds, review the evidence, and confirm expectations and how to respond to likely scenarios.
As I promised, here’s some bonus information that you may not know about:
Follow these tips to help you ace your interview:
⦁ Be honest and open. Think of the interview as an opportunity to give the officer a window into your life as a couple, not as an obligation to portray the ideal marriage. Every couple experiences marital difficulties, and you shouldn’t be penalized for admitting your own.
⦁ Speak your mind. Some interviewing officers will ask very personal questions. If you find a question too offensive, you can let the officer know and decline to answer. Most officers will understand and move on to the next question.
⦁ Practice, practice, practice. It’s important to rehearse before your interview, especially if one of you tends to be forgetful, especially with birthdays. Even people in long-term marriages can often find these interviews stressful, but the more you practice, the less anxious you’re likely to be. In this situation, it’s almost always better to be overprepared than under.
⦁ Have fun! It’s essential to be honest, and thorough when documenting and recalling details about your marriage, but don’t forget to loosen up. After all, you get to stroll down memory lane and make sure your spouse knows what you like to eat for breakfast!
We at Direct U.S. Immigration are ready to answer any of your questions if you find some information vague or just want to ensure you comprehended it correctly. So don’t hesitate to contact us at any time!
I hope you found this video helpful. Subscribe if this content or information helps you in any way, comment below if you want me to talk about something in specific and share this resource because you never know who needs answers to these questions. Additionally, if you have any specific questions about this video as they pertain to your unique circumstances, please schedule a consultation with us at the link below. I’ll see you in the next video.