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leash5

How important is commingling of finances: bank accounts etc?

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I have my AOS interview on Sept 21st. My husband and I, married a year and a half and dating since 2005, are maybe a bit odd, but we don't really commingle our finances. We have separate bank accounts and we did our taxes "married but filing separately" (he always files late and pays to have them done, I file super early and do them myself).

Do you think we NEED to get joint bank accounts and credit cards?

It's just not our style. I'm sure one day if we save to buy a house we will, but right now we live paycheque to paycheque and I don't really want to ask anyone if I managed to pull together the money to buy a new pair of shoes or something, and neither does he ;P If we got joint accounts now, we'd only be doing it for the sake of the interview. I'd rather be honest, but I don't want to run the risk of hurting our case. I also wonder if they will ask or be able to see how long we have had them joint?

We do have:

Joint leases since 2006 (but we each write a cheque for half the rent)

I am on his health insurance plan

We do not have:

Any bills with both our names-- they are all in his name

Any shared bank or credit accounts

Any shared car insurance-- in his name

Any opinions? Thank you!


07/01/2010 - I-485, I-765 and I-130 sent to Chicago lock box
07/03/2010 - package signed for in Chicago
07/12/2010 - text and email notification received
07/17/2010 - hard copy NOA1s received in mail
07/19/2010 - received biometrics letter (scheduled for August 12th)
07/22/2010 - unsuccessful walk-in biometrics in Brooklyn
07/28/2010 - successful walk-in biometrics in Brooklyn
08/24/2010 - EAD card approved (54 DAYS)
08/31/2010 - I-765 touched, post decision activity, email notification of EAD approval
09/01/2010 - I-765 touched
09/03/2010 - EAD card received
09/21/2010 - Interview Date! 9:45 am. APPROVED (83 DAYS). I-551 Stamp.
09/21/2010 - Card/ Document Production
09/29/2010 - Welcome letter received
10/01/2010 - Green Card Received!!! Exactly 3 months smile.png

08/18/2012 - ROC filed (Vermont)
09/04/2012 - NOA date
10/12/2012 - Bio appointment
05/02/2013 - RFE
07/15/2013 - ROC Interview at local (New York City) office, told we would be notified of decision by mail in 60 days
08/02/2013- Case status updated, production of new card ordered!
08/05/2013- InfoPass appointment at Holtsville Long Island, passport stamped with I-551
08/06/2013- Card mailed
08/08/2013- 10 year green card received!!! 10 days short of one year from applicationdancin5hr.gif

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It might seem odd or worst suspicious to an IO that you have all those separate assets. I can't really say whether it is gonna hurt your case as every IO is different. Co-mingling of finances was pretty much the only thing asked during my interview.


AOS Timeline from F1

Sent AOS on April 17

Received and signed on April 19

Got 3 NOAs April 26

Biometrics Appointment Letter received May 1 - dated May 26

Walk-in biometrics rejected May 12

Biometrics Appointment May 26

Interview letter received June 11 - for July 19 APPROVED

EAD Received July 9

GC RECEIVED August 2

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Filed: IR-1/CR-1 Visa Country: Vietnam
Timeline

What you have, is all that you have. No need to manufacture something at the 11th hour that may invite suspicion. A bank account with a modest balance and little activity doesn't demonstrate a shared life.

Submit anything that you can that shows a common address. Mail addressed to the both of you (at the same address).

If you've traveled together by air show boarding passes. Photos together. Gym memberships, etc. Drivers Licenses. Apartment lease. Health insurance cards. Copy of the car insurance coverage showing you as a driver.

You could have wills drawn up.


I-864 Affidavit of Support FAQ -->> https://travel.state.gov/content/visas/en/immigrate/immigrant-process/documents/support/i-864-frequently-asked-questions.html

FOREIGN INCOME REPORTING & TAX FILING -->> https://www.irs.gov/publications/p54/ch01.html#en_US_2015_publink100047318

CALL THIS NUMBER TO ORDER IRS TAX TRANSCRIPTS >> 800-908-9946

PLEASE READ THE GUIDES -->> Link to Visa Journey Guides

MULTI ENTRY SPOUSE VISA TO VN -->>Link to Visa Exemption for Vietnamese Residents Overseas & Their Spouses

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Filed: AOS (apr) Country: Canada
Timeline

Co-mingling of assets is a pretty important thing to many IO's. I agree, don't try to fabricate something now at the 11th hour. It may cause suspicion. Just take anything you can think of to show co-mingling of assets that you DO have. For example, if you payed a bill of his from your account or visa versa. Same with bill payments, phone payments, insurance payments. If you guys have paid each other's bills that would show you have a shared life. Also, if you made any major purchases together, see if you have any evidence of that. Also, make sure you have overwhelming evidence on the other fronts in case the co-mingling comes into question like pictures, letters when courting, e-mails, phone calls, letters addressed to both of you at your home and maybe some affidavits from friends and family. Good Luck.


AOS Timeline

06-28-2010 AOS Packet Sent

07-07-2010 Check Cashed $1010 Ugh!

07-09-2010 NOAs received (I-485,I-130,I-765)

07-14-2010 Biometrics appointment letter received

07-14-2010 RFE (I-864)

07-22-2010 Biometrics appointment

08-20-2010 Submitted RFE Reply I-864

08-24-2010 RFE material received

08-26-2010 Email from USCIS EAD Card Approved

09-03-2010 EAD card received!!!

09-08-2010 Notification of interview date (Oct 12th, 2010)

10-12-2010 Interview-Approved!!!!!

10-26-2010 Green Card Arrived!!!!!!!!

No USCIS till 2012. Wohoooooo

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Filed: Citizen (apr) Country: Romania
Timeline

We do have:

Joint leases since 2006 (but we each write a cheque for half the rent)

I am on his health insurance plan

Any opinions? Thank you!

That is not enough, you need to come up with more. Here are some ideas:

-sign up for a joint gym membership

-do you have a pet?You can put both names on its medical insurance;

-sign up for a joint Costco membership

-sign up for a joint Netflix membership.

-affidavits from family and friends are a big plus and easy to obtain;

-can you or your spouse add the other person to a 401k or a life insurance?

-what about utilities?do they come on both names?

-any trip coming up so you can show a confirmation of your reservation/tickets?

-make sure your DL show the same address - if not- you still have plenty of time to change them!

All these could be done in less than a month!Good luck!


My N-400 Journey

06-02-2017 - N-400 package mailed to Dallas Lockbox

06-06-2017 - Credit card charged; received text and email confirming that application was received and NOA is on its way

06-10-2017 - Received NOA letter from NBC dated 06-05-2017

06-16-2017 - Received Biometrics Appointment Letter for 06-28-2017

01-19-2018 - Interview Letter sent

02-27-18 - Interview and Oath Ceremony. Finally US CITIZEN! 

My ROC Journey

03-08-2012 - I-751 package mailed to VSC

03-10-2012 - I-751 package delivered

03-14-2012 - Check cashed

03-15-2012 - NOA received, dated 03-12-2012

04-27-2012 - Biometrics appointment

11-23-2012 - ROC approved

11-28-2012 - Approval letter received

12-06-2012 - 10 years Green Card received

My AOS Journey

04-17-09 I-130&I-485&I-765 received by USCIS

04-19-10 AOS Approved

04-29-10 Green Card received

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Filed: Country: England
Timeline

I have my AOS interview on Sept 21st. My husband and I, married a year and a half and dating since 2005, are maybe a bit odd, but we don't really commingle our finances. We have separate bank accounts and we did our taxes "married but filing separately" (he always files late and pays to have them done, I file super early and do them myself).

Do you think we NEED to get joint bank accounts and credit cards?

It's just not our style. I'm sure one day if we save to buy a house we will, but right now we live paycheque to paycheque and I don't really want to ask anyone if I managed to pull together the money to buy a new pair of shoes or something, and neither does he ;P If we got joint accounts now, we'd only be doing it for the sake of the interview. I'd rather be honest, but I don't want to run the risk of hurting our case. I also wonder if they will ask or be able to see how long we have had them joint?

We do have:

Joint leases since 2006 (but we each write a cheque for half the rent)

I am on his health insurance plan

We do not have:

Any bills with both our names-- they are all in his name

Any shared bank or credit accounts

Any shared car insurance-- in his name

Any opinions? Thank you!

Thank you for posting this, it is something I've been worrying about too. DH and I have separate bank accounts and no shared credit cards. The utilities are all in his name too.

The house is also in his name although I am on the farmowner's insurance. The farm is on a seller financed, registered land contract right now rather than a traditional mortgage. The seller has agreed to provide us with a notarized affidavit that we live here together as man and wife (she lives in the village and we see her regularly, she comes over sometimes for eggs.)

So what we have right now are,

The seller's affidavit

Joint farmowner's and auto insurance

Both names on the car title

Joint ownership of a horse (both our names printed on his breed assoc. registration papers)

I am listed as his wife on his VA disability paperwork.

Do you guys think this is enough?


AOS,EAD,AP aps received: 7/28/10

Biometrics appointment notice: 8/06/10

Biometrics appointment: 8/20/10

AOS Touched: 8/20/10

AOS Touched: 8/30/10

AOS Interview notification received: 9/02/10 for 10/05/10

AP Touched: 9/23/10

EAD Approval/card production email: 9/24/10

AP Touched: 9/28/10

EAD Touched again, same card production email: 9/29/10

EAD and AP received: 10/01/10

Applied for SSN: 10/04/10

Interview date: 10/05/10 Detroit.

10 year GC APPROVED: 10/05/10 !!!!!!!!!

Welcome letter arrived in the mail: 10/09/10

SS card arrived: 10/12/10

Green Card arrived in mail: 10/15/10 :)

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Tiempo and Tucker

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Filed: IR-1/CR-1 Visa Country: China
Timeline

leash5 - Well, here's the thing, aye?

The guidelines for adjudication CAN have some variance on them, or rather the IO can 'stretch' things a bit,

based on 'what' yer adjusting status FROM, and how long you've been in the USA.

For example, a K-1 visa holder, newly married, won't have so much of this co-mingling evidence.

A K-3 visa holder, adjusting 18 months after arrival, well, that's a bit different, but even this can be problematic, as a K-3 visa holder doesn't qualify for a SSN until after an EAD or greencard in hand - so whilst 'length of time' in country is evaluated, is difficult to 'build a casefile' between the two (husband and wife) as the foreign-born spouse doesn't have a SSN, and without it, is mostly difficult to get finances co-mingled. It can be done, but it is difficult.

Now, if yer adjusting from a work visa, then you prolly already have a SSN, ya? You've made some mention of taxes, so I have to assume a bit, there.

One thing ppl miss, always, is the 'payable on death' (POD) instructions for various accounts - bank accounts, life insurance, CDs, stock brokerage accounts - those DO NOT REQUIRE a SSN to be set up as a beneficiary for POD instructions, usually.

So, IMO, it all boils down to which guidelines the IO will be using on interview day. I've no way to forecast that, I do have some general 'rule of thumb' - if you've been in country for more than 2 years and/or married for more than 2 years, is good chance that the guidelines for adjudication selected - will be the ones normally utilised for a 'removal of conditions' case - but hei - Good Luck on the 21st !

Edited by Darnell

Sometimes my language usage seems confusing - please feel free to 'read it twice', just in case !
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leash5 - Well, here's the thing, aye?

The guidelines for adjudication CAN have some variance on them, or rather the IO can 'stretch' things a bit,

based on 'what' yer adjusting status FROM, and how long you've been in the USA.

For example, a K-1 visa holder, newly married, won't have so much of this co-mingling evidence.

A K-3 visa holder, adjusting 18 months after arrival, well, that's a bit different, but even this can be problematic, as a K-3 visa holder doesn't qualify for a SSN until after an EAD or greencard in hand - so whilst 'length of time' in country is evaluated, is difficult to 'build a casefile' between the two (husband and wife) as the foreign-born spouse doesn't have a SSN, and without it, is mostly difficult to get finances co-mingled. It can be done, but it is difficult.

Now, if yer adjusting from a work visa, then you prolly already have a SSN, ya? You've made some mention of taxes, so I have to assume a bit, there.

One thing ppl miss, always, is the 'payable on death' (POD) instructions for various accounts - bank accounts, life insurance, CDs, stock brokerage accounts - those DO NOT REQUIRE a SSN to be set up as a beneficiary for POD instructions, usually.

So, IMO, it all boils down to which guidelines the IO will be using on interview day. I've no way to forecast that, I do have some general 'rule of thumb' - if you've been in country for more than 2 years and/or married for more than 2 years, is good chance that the guidelines for adjudication selected - will be the ones normally utilised for a 'removal of conditions' case - but hei - Good Luck on the 21st !

thanks! is there a link to the guidelines for 'removal of conditions' that you mentioned? i have been here for almost 5 years and married for 1.5 years. i am sure everyone feels this way, but i find it so annoying to have to stretch beyond the way we actually, naturally live in order to prove we are married. we've been dating almost 5 years, have a million pictures, leases, a big wedding and i think this should be enough! :bonk: we don't have shared financials because neither of us want them. sorry, feeling grumpy about this item (not toward anyone here, just the guidelines and process)!

i also sponsored him to become a landed immigrant in canada, and we passed with flying colors, with no interview-- which also might be why this makes me grumpy... but on the other hand, i wonder if that will help our case?


07/01/2010 - I-485, I-765 and I-130 sent to Chicago lock box
07/03/2010 - package signed for in Chicago
07/12/2010 - text and email notification received
07/17/2010 - hard copy NOA1s received in mail
07/19/2010 - received biometrics letter (scheduled for August 12th)
07/22/2010 - unsuccessful walk-in biometrics in Brooklyn
07/28/2010 - successful walk-in biometrics in Brooklyn
08/24/2010 - EAD card approved (54 DAYS)
08/31/2010 - I-765 touched, post decision activity, email notification of EAD approval
09/01/2010 - I-765 touched
09/03/2010 - EAD card received
09/21/2010 - Interview Date! 9:45 am. APPROVED (83 DAYS). I-551 Stamp.
09/21/2010 - Card/ Document Production
09/29/2010 - Welcome letter received
10/01/2010 - Green Card Received!!! Exactly 3 months smile.png

08/18/2012 - ROC filed (Vermont)
09/04/2012 - NOA date
10/12/2012 - Bio appointment
05/02/2013 - RFE
07/15/2013 - ROC Interview at local (New York City) office, told we would be notified of decision by mail in 60 days
08/02/2013- Case status updated, production of new card ordered!
08/05/2013- InfoPass appointment at Holtsville Long Island, passport stamped with I-551
08/06/2013- Card mailed
08/08/2013- 10 year green card received!!! 10 days short of one year from applicationdancin5hr.gif

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