Sajha Friends, Has anyone filed for Marriage based green card while spouse were living in different state. As i read different article online, some people say that there will be some concern raised by USCIS when you apply for marriage based green card and your spouse lives in different state. Just wanted to check if anyone had an experience on this scenario?
There will be concerns, but if you can prove you are genuinely married but circumstances resulted in you being in separate states, then that should not be a problem. Show some strong proof of marriage, such as combined bank statement with a good sum of money, joint property (or mortgage) and such.
I did last year because me and my wife worked in different states. The marriage was very very recent too so I was worried about both recent marriage and not living in same sate. Everything went smooth . No hiccups at all. But we had proofs to show we knew each other for loooooog time like some joint bills, life insurance beneficiaries etc.
Thanks Cement for sharing your experience. did you submit any cover letter with your application to explain why you and you spouse were living in different state? when spouse are living in different state, where will USCIS conduct interview? is it based on who is applying for GC or based on who is sponsoring the GC ?
@Karnali9 we did not submit any cover letter. Not sure if submitting any cover letter is helpful either unless requested. I feel like that would be like pointing them out to the "problem" although it probably really isn't a problem. I don't remember how exactly we filled out forms but I remember using same mailing address for both of us so all communication from USCIS were sent to same address and visits to USCIS were scheduled at the USCIS location closer to that mailing address.
@cement: Am i correct to understand that you had different physical address and single common mailing address for you and your spouse while applying for Green card? My understanding is that the physical address and mailing address are two different things/section in green card processing application forms.
Yes, your understanding is correct. I don't remember details about the form now but it was common mailing address and different physical address (address of residence). In our case, mailing address was used to get common USCIS location. Although, I was a little concerned, I never gave much thoughts to it because we had many docs to prove we knew each other for long time and were husband and wife. Not sure how far the two states are in your case but may be you travel to see each other frequently. If you do end up getting RFE or get asked in Interview, may be you can show proof of the travels to show you visited each other frequently and the only reason for living in two different states is because of work and nothing else.
@cement Thank you for the info. I have a couple questions if you could answer them.
1. Did you get an interview from USCIS? I mean is the interview necessary for I130 to be approved? I basically want to know when does the interview step happen. Before i130 approval, of after applying i485?
@cement Thank you for your sharing exp, I am on the same boat, me and my wfie lives in seperate state due to work, and USCIS has sent us courtesy letter in regards to Applicant and Petitioner having different zipcode and bring the supporting evedince in Interview. I have my interview schedule end of this month.
On the same note, I did not update the recent address change to USCIS, so interview is scheduled nearest uscis office near my previous address, not sure how i should approach with this?
I am wondering what are the checklist documents should i take it for supporting documents for living in different zipcode and supporting evidence of relationship with me?
Here's what i am thinking. Your suggestion will be highly apprecited.
For different zipcode, 1. Letter from Employer stating current work location, 2. Prof of her school registration where she lives.
For supporting evidence of relationship: 1. Tax Return as Married filing jointly for past three years 2. Health insurance certificate or card (name listed together) 3. Vechile Insurance (name listed together) 4. Photos 5. Credit card statement ( listed wife as Athorized user) 6. Phone bill ( My Name is only included in cell phone bill but i do have another which my wife is using, not sure if this valid document to show?) 7. Airline ticket (proof of the travels to show)
I do not have anything stating her name in listed any lease or rental aggrement, or even in any utilities bill together as she did not had SSN before.
@nepali8 Me and my wife filed based on my approved I-140 too. Similar to yours. Luckily we had no interview so I really can't comment on what to expect but supporting docs for proof of relationship you've listed seem strong enough. If we were called for interview I had similar documents in my mind. I remember thinking of taking our wedding pics too just in case. Probably #4 covers that. I wish you all the best.