Fiance Visa Adjustment of Status

Definition:

Adjustment of status is an immigration process whereby an alien visa holder present in the U.S. applies to go from being a temporary visa holder (fiance visa) to having permanent resident status. Adjustment is done without the necessity of the temporary visa holder needing to leave the U.S. The fiance visa adjustment of status process only sometimes requires an interview. Very often the permanent residency is granted without an interview at the local USCIS office. The fiance visa is a single entry visa and only valid for 90 days after entry to the United States. The sole purpose of the fiance visa is to enable the foreign fiance to enter the U.S. to marry her American petitioner fiance. Fiance visa beneficiaries are required to apply for adjustment of status to permanent residency after marriage.

Adjustment of Status Eligibility

An alien fiance visa holder is eligible to apply for adjustment of status to permanent residency if she meets the following two conditions:
1. She is married to the American citizen who petitioned for her fiance visa;
2. She is presently in the U.S. In other words, she has not left the U.S. since entering on her fiance visa.

Adjustment of Status Procedure:

The application to adjust status is commenced with the filing of form I-485. Fiance visa beneficiaries are NOT required to file form I-130 with their I-485 application. The USCIS requires that all applicants applying for adjustment status on the basis of marriage file an I-864 Affidavit of Support executed by the American spouse. The fiance adjustment applicant should also submit form I-765, application for employment authorization, to enable the fiance to work in the U.S. pending the granting of permanent residency status.

If the fiance needs to leave the U.S. before obtaining permanent residency she must also file Form I-131, Application for Travel Document. The I-131 enables the adjustment applicant to leave the U.S. and reenter. If the applicant leaves the U.S. prior to obtaining travel permission the USCIS will consider her adjustment application to be abandoned.

Fiance Visa Adjustment of Status Documentation:

1. Marriage Certificate
2. Copy of Fiance Visa and Passport Biographic Data Page
3 I-94 Arrival/Departure record
4. Passport-size photos of Adjustment Applicant and American Petitioner
5. Proof of American Petitioner’s U.S. Citizenship (Birth Certificate and Passport)
6. Adjustment Applicant’s Birth Certificate with Translation and Certification if not in English
7. Approval Notice from Fiance Visa Petition
8. American Petitioner’s Tax Return (including W-2s and 1099s), Employer Letter and Pay Stubs
9. All Divorce Decrees and Former Spouse Death Certificates (if applicable) for Adjustment Applicant and American Petitioner. These must be translated and certified if not in English.
10. Form I-693 for Adjustment Applicant

Adjustment of Status Interview

If the USCIS decides that interview is necessary it will send the applicant an interview notice. That notice will specify all the documents the applicant is required to bring to the interview. Typically the USCIS wants to see proof of the marriage bona fides. Examples of evidence of the marriage bona fides includes the following:

    A. Proof of Joint Residence – Lease or mortgage documents and driver’s licenses
    B. Proof of Joint Finances
    C. Pictures of wedding and life together

The applicant and her spouse need to bring proof of identity (drivers license, passport) to the interview and must also pass through a security checkpoint.


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