400 Tuscarawas Street West, Suite 420
Canton, Ohio 44702
Phone: (330)- 329-7134
Is your marriage bonafide enough for US Immigration:
US Immigration authorities are always on the lookout for sham marriages or marriages that are not bonafide. They are skilled in ferreting out evidence to make even the most solid of married couples shake and quiver at their visa interview. If you are applying for permanent residence (green card) based on marriage to a U.S. citizen, you must be prepared to prove that your marriage is real. Don’t think that “Oh my marriage is real, I don’t need to prove it” You will be in for an awakening at your visa interview. You will need to provide lots of documentary evidence of your having taken concrete steps to establish a life together, with shared finances, living arrangements among other things. Some examples are listed below and the list is not exhaustive:
Photographs that show both spouses together, and with family and friends. These can be taken at the wedding, at other functions or events, and throughout their relationship.
Copies of joint income tax returns.
Evidence of joint checking, savings or other bank accounts.
Photo identification cards of both spouses with a new card for the wife showing her married name.
Driver's licenses, credit cards, check cashing cards, employment I.D. cards, video club memberships, etc. for both parties.
Real property deeds showing joint tenancy.
Apartment Lease or a letter from the landlord indicating that both spouses live at the apartment or copies of rent receipts showing both parties' names.
Letter from an employer showing a change in records to reflect spouse's new marital status.
Letter from an employer showing designation of the spouse as the person to be notified in event of accident, sickness or other emergency.
10. Evidence of life insurance policies where the spouse is named beneficiary.
11. Evidence of medical or health insurance plans which name the spouse as a member or beneficiary.
12. Power of Attorney or Wills listing each other as beneficiary.
13. Evidence of correspondence between the parties, including letters, birthday and holiday cards, telephone calls and other correspondence addressed to the parties.
14. Religious marriage certificate if there was a church wedding.
15. Copies of gas, electric, telephone and other utility bills.
16. Evidence of joint ownership of automobile.
17. Birth certificates of children born or adopted
19. Evidence of vacations taken together, including airline tickets and hotel bills.
20. Evidence of all major purchases made together, such as household appliances, furniture and electronics.
21. Social Media references to each other, do not discount Face book and Twitter!
Once you have gathered your documents, you will need to focus on the possible questions that Immigration authorities could ask you at your interview about the validity of your marriage such as the color of your bedroom curtains or where in your house the light switch is located. The list of questions is endless and you ought to be prepared with the truth.
If either of you seems unable to answer the questions, or seem uncomfortable at all, you may be switched to meeting with the “fraud unit,” for what is called a “Stokes interview.” Each of you will then be separately asked an identical set of questions, and your answers compared to see how well they match up. If they don’t match up, you could face dire consequences, your visa will be denied and worse, you could be deported. A good immigration attorney can provide you with a list of questions that could possibly be asked and can help “pass” your marriage interview test. It is always best to be prepared!! Call a qualified Immigration Attorney for help.
At Sandra Boogaard Law Office, we can help you. Call (330) 329-7134. Our attorneys can prepare you beforehand and accompany you to the interview to ensure that all procedures are correct.
Sandra Boogaard Immigration Law Office
Sandra Boogaard Immigration Law Office