We understand the anxiety married couples experience before a Green Card marriage interview.
To help you with what to expect during the Green Card marriage interview and the sample questions for Green Card interview, here we have compiled the most common marriage based Green Card interview questions. We have also included the tips on how to better prepare for the USCIS marriage interview.
Emily, a foreign national, is married to Devon, a U.S. Citizen. They have been married for about 18 months and Emily filed for Adjustment of Status following the marriage. She recently received a letter from USCIS asking her to attend an interview with her husband. Emily and Devon had imagined that the USCIS marriage interview would only be a formality for them as they were genuinely married.
However, they came to know from their friends that the USCIS marriage interview is not always a routine formality, and may be tough. They were informed that even couples that have been married for a longer period find the USCIS marriage interview questions difficult to answer. With the interview being scheduled for next week, Emily and Devon started to worry as they had not prepared specifically for the interview.
The marriage based Green Card interview is a major aspect of the inspection process before being granted a Green Card through marriage, and keeping in mind this is a frequently exploited route for gaining immigrant status, USCIS does not make it an effortless process.
Though the marriage may be bona fide, there is every possibility that the interview may become a grueling event if the participants are ill-prepared. Immigration officials may even search the internet or social networking sites such as Facebook to investigate your intentions. If a USCIS officer suspects any fraud they may investigate your place of residence and look closely at photographs you supply to determine if they have been altered. It is incumbent on you to prove that your marriage was not entered into solely to obtain immigration benefits.
Reflect on the history of your relationship. Be prepared to portray your journey from initial meeting to marriage– first date, subsequent meetings, important events, happy moments, sad moments, disagreements, time spent together, events spent with each other’s family and friends, special gifts, proposal, acceptance, sharing the news with family and friends, etc.
Be prepared to answer questions about the wedding ceremony, reception, guests, interesting or embarrassing events, if any, that happened during the ceremony or reception, what was served, how guests were entertained, did the wedding ceremony have a theme, who wrote the vows, who purchased the rings - how and where, who paid for the ceremony, honeymoon plans, etc.
If you live in an apartment or condominium:
Be prepared to answer questions relating to any present and past residences where you have lived together, including information about furnishings and appliances, the size and number of rooms, automobiles you have or had, neighbors, and visitors.
The Officer may even ask you to sketch a particular room or portion of the residence or you both may be asked to show your house keys and tell what keys go to each door. The officer will expect to see both spouses to have the same number of corresponding keys for the primary residence.
Also be prepared to answer questions about your spouse’s job, work schedule and working conditions, earnings, and how he or she travels to work. Be prepared to discuss your joint-spending, investments, tax filings, joint bank accounts, financial dealings, and mortgages, etc.
If the interviewing officer suspects that the marriage is not bona fide, expect very detailed questions. You could even be separated to answer the same set of questions separately.
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Be prepared to answer questions about each other’s general habits, lifestyle, preferences, daily routines, schedules, household chores, favorite pastimes – individual and together, holidays spent together, specific rituals that you follow, shopping habits, food habits, sleeping habits, religious routines, etc.
Be prepared to answers questions about each other’s relatives, friends, family, work place, family gatherings, festival celebrations, family holidays, anniversaries, dates and events of importance, etc.
Be prepared to answer questions about your children, your spouse’s children from previous marriage(s), parents, siblings, and other close relatives, if any, etc.
Be prepared to answer questions about how you got to the interview venue, how your day had progressed so far, what happened in the immediately preceding days, plans for the rest of day, immediate future plans etc.
Following the advice of an immigration expert, Emily and Devon started preparing for their USCIS marriage interview. They arrived at the immigration office half-hour early on the interview date and brought all relevant documents with them. Their preparation helped them answer all the USCIS marriage interview questions confidently and convincingly. Emily was able to obtain her Green Card without any hassles.