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WHAT DO I NEED TO PETITION MY SPOUSE WHO IS ALREADY IN THE US?

AG Law Firm Jan. 27, 2022

Marriage-based petitions can be harder than they seem. We always do thorough evaluations to see if you qualify to petition your spouse and have them adjust (get a green card) while they’re here in the US. Once you’ve gotten through those steps, you may be thinking, well: what do I need to provide my attorney? We’ve created a basic list which is a good start in gathering documentation to provide to your attorney:

  • We want your financials. We want to see last 3 years of tax return transcripts, W-2s, and your last 3 paystubs. This is important information, especially if you’ve already filed taxes with your spouse.

  • Speaking of financials -- We want to see your joint bank account statements, your life insurance showing each other as beneficiaries, your car insurance under both names, your health insurance under both names. If you even have a joint credit card or something similar, we want to see copies of those statements, too.

  • We like photographs that are varied, that have descriptions and dates describing them. But keep it to less than 20. Have an album? Bring it to the interview if you’re scheduled. In the meantime, we want to see pics of your vacations, your celebrations with friends and family, and any other special moments together.

  • You have a will? We want a copy! Wills are important documents to show to immigration that you’re both seriously thinking about your future together.

  • We’ve got the basics, too: birth certificates of your kids (yes, this includes biological children, adoptive children, step-children and any children who are deceased), marriage certificates, copies of leases/mortgages or anything else showing that you reside together, and don’t forget any other bills you share in both names. We also want to see proof of your spouse’s residency or naturalization status as well as proof of how you arrived into the US.

  • Ever wonder what your friends and family think about you guys together? Give us letters! We want notarized letters from your family and friends detailing how great your relationship is. Ask them to detail moments they felt were special to them.

  • Did you buy something big together? A car? A house? A business? We’d like proof of those purchases, especially because they’re jointly owned and a great way to bolster your application.

  • Not your first rodeo? We need divorce decrees if you’ve been married previously.

  • Finally, I like to ask my clients for love letters or cards they’ve sent to each other. Seriously. We love to submit stuff like this because it shows how much care, time, and love you’ve put into each other.

This isn’t a comprehensive list, but it’ll get you started in the right direction of the kinds of documents we as immigration attorneys are looking to get from our clients for marriage-based petitions.