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Do we need to get the marriage certificate from vital

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Do we need to get the marriage certificate from the vital office or we only need the marriage certificate from the court? One of our friends told us that we need to get the marriage record from the vital office.

Another question is that is it better to get a lawyer to go to the interview with us? One lawyer said that if the lawyer went with us, the USCIS officer would not ask.... questions (like stroke interview). I know that most of the time they ask simple questions, but we want to make sure the interview went through smoothly and no trouble.

Thank you for your advice!

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Filed: IR-5 Country: Philippines
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Do we need to get the marriage certificate from the vital office or we only need the marriage certificate from the court? One of our friends told us that we need to get the marriage record from the vital office.

Another question is that is it better to get a lawyer to go to the interview with us? One lawyer said that if the lawyer went with us, the USCIS officer would not ask.... questions (like stroke interview). I know that most of the time they ask simple questions, but we want to make sure the interview went through smoothly and no trouble.

Thank you for your advice!

I don't think the lawyer will be of help during interview. How can the lawyer prove that your relationship is genuine?

Get a certified copy of your marriage contract. We were issued Abstract of marriage Certificate before coz we got married in Lake Tahoe...but then it's not valid with immigration purposes, so I asked for a True Certified copy...that's what you will need.

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There is a not insignificant risk that, if your lawyer accompanies you, the officer WILL ask more questions and be "harder" on you. Why? It is a non-adversarial interview and s/he may be annoyed with you for having "lawyered up." This depends 100% on the personality of the officer.

What would be the benefit of taking this risk? If you are asked "bad" questions, or you clam up and give ####### answers, your lawyer can do a mini "cross-examination" and give you a chance to recup the ground you may have lost.

At the end of the day, I think taking your lawyer is a ####### shoot... and an expensive one at that!

[NOTE: None of this applies if you have any difficult issues/hurdles that you need to deal with. The considerations would be very different.]

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Filed: Citizen (apr) Country: Ecuador
Timeline
Do we need to get the marriage certificate
Yes, a certified copy. Order a couple of extras for your own later use, because these are handy to have around.
questions (like stroke interview)
THIS is funny (not making fun of you at all here) -- it's "Stokes interview," but it can certainly cause enough stress to cause a stroke.

06-04-2007 = TSC stamps postal return-receipt for I-129f.

06-11-2007 = NOA1 date (unknown to me).

07-20-2007 = Phoned Immigration Officer; got WAC#; where's NOA1?

09-25-2007 = Touch (first-ever).

09-28-2007 = NOA1, 23 days after their 45-day promise to send it (grrrr).

10-20 & 11-14-2007 = Phoned ImmOffs; "still pending."

12-11-2007 = 180 days; file is "between workstations, may be early Jan."; touches 12/11 & 12/12.

12-18-2007 = Call; file is with Division 9 ofcr. (bckgrnd check); e-prompt to shake it; touch.

12-19-2007 = NOA2 by e-mail & web, dated 12-18-07 (187 days; 201 per VJ); in mail 12/24/07.

01-09-2008 = File from USCIS to NVC, 1-4-08; NVC creates file, 1/15/08; to consulate 1/16/08.

01-23-2008 = Consulate gets file; outdated Packet 4 mailed to fiancee 1/27/08; rec'd 3/3/08.

04-29-2008 = Fiancee's 4-min. consular interview, 8:30 a.m.; much evidence brought but not allowed to be presented (consul: "More proof! Second interview! Bring your fiance!").

05-05-2008 = Infuriating $12 call to non-English-speaking consulate appointment-setter.

05-06-2008 = Better $12 call to English-speaker; "joint" interview date 6/30/08 (my selection).

06-30-2008 = Stokes Interrogations w/Ecuadorian (not USC); "wait 2 weeks; we'll mail her."

07-2008 = Daily calls to DOS: "currently processing"; 8/05 = Phoned consulate, got Section Chief; wrote him.

08-07-08 = E-mail from consulate, promising to issue visa "as soon as we get her passport" (on 8/12, per DHL).

08-27-08 = Phoned consulate (they "couldn't find" our file); visa DHL'd 8/28; in hand 9/1; through POE on 10/9 with NO hassles(!).

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