Immigration marriage fraud may be something many people have only seen on television or in the movies. However, it does happen quite frequently in the United States. If you are a United States citizen and have obtained an immigrant visa for a spouse or fiancé, it is important to understand that the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) will scrutinize your application. Afterward, they will also scrutinize your relationship. It is important to know what red flags they look for so you can avoid them and protect your status.
If the couple does not speak the same language, the agency will wonder if they are really married or intending to get married. The theory is that when a couple cannot speak to each other, it is too much of a challenge for them to build and share a life together.
This is a major red flag. It is expected that when people are married, they will live together. If the USCIS discovers that two people that are married do not live at the same address, this will raise a red flag and make them question why that is.
Sometimes a couple lives together but has such different schedules that they rarely, if ever, see each other. When USCIS discovers this, they will question whether or not the couple arranged their living situation this way intentionally. They will likely investigate the situation, particularly if there are other red flags, as well.
If a couple gets married after the removal process has already begun for one of the individuals, the timing will seem a little too convenient to be authentic. Although people can apply for marriage-based green cards as a defense to deportation, officers will likely ask why they only chose to marry once the situation became so urgent.
For most people, getting married is one of the most exciting times of their life and they typically cannot wait to tell their loved ones about it. If the USCIS finds that none of the couple’s family and friends have heard about the marriage, they will see this as a red flag.
After applying for a marriage-related visa, the couple will be asked to present evidence of their life together. When the dates on memberships, joint accounts, and assets are just weeks before the visa interview date, this creates suspicion that the couple was just trying to make it look like they have a life together, rather than naturally combining their two lives.
Visas based on marriage help unite couples every day in the United States. However, they are often also seen as some of the most suspicious. If you need help with a marriage visa or any other type of visa, our Chicago immigration attorneys at Kriezelman, Burton & Associates can help. Call us today to schedule a meeting and learn more about how we can help.
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The KB&A Team