Tips for Marriage-Based Green Card Approval

The world seems smaller than ever these days as it becomes easier to connect and stay connected with people across the globe. It is even common for U.S. citizens to develop and maintain a relationship with someone who is not a permanent resident in the U.S. Should this relationship turn into marriage, your spouse will need to obtain a marriage-based green card should he or she wish to live and work in the U.S. as you build your life together.

How to Navigate the Marriage-Based Green Card Approval Process

Here are some tips on how to successfully navigate the marriage-based green card approval process. First and foremost, be sure to be diligent in providing the required and requested documentation. You will need to supply a marriage certificate along with other supporting documentation. The supporting documentation may include things like proof of joint bank accounts and a joint lease. It may also include sworn affidavits from third parties with personal knowledge of your relationship that can support its legitimacy.

Review your application once completed. Take care to address any mistakes or misspellings. Save a copy of your application for your records. Should anything change, such as your address, be sure to keep USCIS updated. Once the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) receives your application, you will be sent a Receipt Notice confirming the receipt and acceptance of your application for review and adjudication. The Notice will also have a Receipt Number that can be used to track the status of your application.

Comply with all application requirements beyond filling out and submitting the application itself. For instance, you will need to attend a biometrics appointment. This is when USCIS will take your photo and fingerprints for submission for a background check. You will also receive an invitation to attend your in-person interview.

The interview is not just a formality, but is a critical part of the marriage-based green card process. It can also be one of the most stressful parts. The interview will be conducted by immigration officials who will be seeking to verify the marriage’s validity. There is a presumption that the marriage was entered into solely for immigration purposes. You are tasked with overcoming this presumption and may be asked some fairly invasive questions. You may be asked details about your relationship and it’s history. Where did you meet? What was the proposal like? When did you introduce each other to your parents? Keep calm and answer the questions as directly and concisely as possible. There is no need to put on a show and be overly affectionate with your spouse during the interview. In fact, this may trigger suspicions. Consider bringing a photo album of your life together to show to the immigration officer. Bring updated documentation on anything relevant to the development of your marriage and life together. This may include birth certificates of your children as well as joint tax returns.

Immigration Law Attorneys

If you should have any questions or need more information about the ways in which the U.S. Immigration and Nationality Laws may impact you, your family, your friends or your colleagues, please contact the U.S. Immigration and Nationality Lawyers at the NPZ Law Group – VISASERVE – U.S. Immigration and Nationality Lawyers by e-mailing us at or by calling us at 201-670-0006 (x107). You can also visit our Law Firm’s website at