How Should I Prepare for the Embassy Fiancé Interview?

I. The Finance Visa Petition Process

One of the most exciting steps for couples from different nationalities is to begin the fiancé visa immigration application process. The fiancé visa petition requires that the foreign national fiancé reside outside the United States. It is important that the process begins and finishes in an efficient manner to minimize the couple’s separation. The initial step begins in the U.S. by having the U.S. citizen fiancé file a fiancé visa petition with the U.S. Citizenship & Immigration Services (“USCIS”).

The attorneys at The Law Firm of Shihab & Associates have decades of combined experience in handling fiancé visas and understand the sensitivities couples feel while undergoing this process. We will spend the extra time to carefully and deliberately explain the additional steps that must be undertaken to assure that the fiancé visa application is most favorably considered by the immigration authorities. Our immigration lawyers are available to discuss your fiancé visa in Columbus, Ohio, Cleveland, Ohio, in Southfield near Detroit, Michigan, and in Washington, DC. Contact us or call us at (800) 625-3404 for a consultation.

If the foreign national fiancé is currently in the United States, different processes apply and the couple should inquire about the immigration strategies available to them prior to embarking on any Immigration process.

Once the initial fiancé visa petition is approved in the U.S., it is processed through the National Visa Center for an interview before the U.S. Consulate nearest to the foreign national’s home residence.

II. Prior to the Interview

By far, the embassy interview is the most stressful stage in the fiancé visa application process both for the U.S. citizen and the foreign national fiancé as they do not know how to prepare for it and in most instances do not know what occurs at such interview. We advise that the U.S. citizen fiancé attend the embassy interview with the foreign national fiancé. While this is not always possible as some consulates will refuse to see the U.S. citizen fiancé, we believe that having the U.S. citizen in or near the consulate campus is highly indicative of the good faith worthiness of the relationship and can solidify the genuineness of the relationship in the eyes of the Consular officers. Again, this is not a requirement but it is recommended.

If it is not possible for the US citizen fiancé to attend the interview, there is no reason to stress out. Simply reserve some time to jointly discuss the common circumstances that gave rise to your relationship, such as where and how you met, how you remained in contact with each other, where and how you decided to get married, who proposed to whom and when, who was present in your meetings as well as your wedding plans, and how and where you plan to establish your lives together as man and wife.

  1. The Petition Paperwork: Make certain that you both carefully and critically study all documents submitted and that you review the questions and your answers on all forms. In addition, be sure to review your immigration history, the number of visits to the U.S., and any prior status.
  2. Criminal History, Prior Immigration Problems or Errors entered on Fiancé Visa Forms: The fiance visa interview may be complicated if the foreign national has a prior criminal history, has an unfavorable prior U.S. immigration history, or if there are inaccuracies on the fiance visa forms. If such issues exist, it is highly advisable to immediately discuss the same with your immigration counsel. Please be aware that what might seemingly be a “harmless” issue on the forms or be a mishap in the foreign national’s prior criminal or U.S. immigration history, might, in fact, complicate the visa interview or severely affect the foreign national’s chances of ever entering the U.S. Our law firm has the experience to effectively handle such prior complications and will advise you relative to the best course of action in such situations. Contact The Law Firm of Shihab & Associates for a consultation to discuss your particular circumstances. The immigration lawyers will discuss your fiancé visa and carefully listen to all facts that might affect the outcome of your fiancé visa process.
  3. The Days Leading Up to the Interview: We will contact you in ample time prior to the scheduled fiancé visa interview to make sure all forms are electronically completed. Fiancé visa forms that have been submitted at the time of the interview must be completed using the U.S. Department of State online system. Each dependent child must have their own form completed and submitted. Your attorney will also make certain that you begin compiling the documents that you must take with you to the interview. These documents are normally listed on the U.S. Embassy website.
III. The Day of the Interview:

If your U.S. citizen fiancé decided to accompany the foreign national to the fiancé visa interview, please advise him or her that they might be waiting for several hours as many foreign nationals may be scheduled at the same time. Be organized and know what documents you have. Take the original and a copy of any required primary documents such as birth, marriage, divorce, or death certificates and medical examination records. The consular officer will examine such documents and will return them to the foreign national after completion of the interview. The consular officer may appreciate the fact that you have copies of some of the documents that they would like to keep and might save time.

1. Good Faith Worthiness of the Relationship:

Once the consular officer examines the foreign national’s documents, the officer will conduct the interview. Dependent children under the age of 14 do not need to attend the interview. The officer will take the foreign national fiancé’s fingerprints and will administer the oath. The officer will then ask questions to verify that the foreign national’s relationship with the U.S. citizen is truthful and genuine and that the couple intends to marry once they are in the U.S.

If the officer asks questions that you do not know the answer to, simply state that you do not know the answer to the question or that you would have to check on the answer and get back to the officer. It is important not to guess or lie simply to answer the question as this may have severe consequences. If the consular officer requires additional information or documentation, the foreign national fiancé should request the officer to provide a written letter specifically listing the additional information needed.

Once the U.S. Consular officer is satisfied that everything is in good order, the officer will then issue the K-1 fiancé visa. Any dependent, unmarried children of the foreign national fiancé will be granted K-2 visas. In the event the consular officer determines that the foreign national is not entitled to receive the visa, a letter will be issued explaining the reasons for the denial and the legal provisions upon which the denial is based.

Our immigration attorneys have the knowledge and the expertise to closely examine and analyze your case and will not tire until they are satisfied that you are ready for your upcoming interview. Our team of competent immigration attorneys will do everything in their power to ensure that the foreign national fiancé enters the U.S. in time for the planned marriage.

How to Contact Us:

If you have a fiancé residing outside the U.S. and you would like to be reunited with them, contact the experienced attorneys at The Law Firm of Shihab & Associates, Co., LPA at the office nearest you or call them at (800) 625-3404. We have the experience and sensitivity to handle a wide variety of immigration matters, including fiancé visas, family immigration, Green Cards and permanent residence.

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