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eckoin

Marriage AOS - Interview experience 12/2018 - Charleston, SC

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I had a lot of help from this forum through this process, so I wanted to share my experience. 

 

I hope this helps those of you who are freaking out despite knowing that you're in a legitimate marriage and technically should have nothing to worry about. 

 

Our situation:

I, the beneficiary, was working in the US on a TN visa when applying for AOS. My husband is a USC by birth. We met four years ago on vacation, while I was technically married to my first husband but we were separated. I got my second TN in Charleston for a perfect job. I planned to stay with my now-husband while I looked for my own place but never left. Technically, I moved in as soon as I entered the country, though that wasn't the intent. We have one child born last year, and have been married for 1.5 years as of today. 

 

Things that supported our application:

 

- we do have a kid

- we have some joint bills (some of the important ones anyway) 

- we're really legit 

 

Things that didn't support our application:

 

- while we do have joint finances, it's only when it "made sense" - like joint car and home insurance, medical and dental, a family cell phone. Everything else, like internet and utility bills, are separate. We still have no joint baking accounts. 

- we have no pictures. I hate pictures, and can't budge. 

 

Other things:

 

- I make well above the 125% poverty line on my TN. My husband started his own business last year, and as it's in the process, his expenses far outweigh the revenues, so his profits are "R&D scale". I am supporting the household financially, and we did not seek a joint sponsor nor include my husband's assets (I just have student loans). This was the basis for my successful EAD expedite, which allowed me to continue working after my TN expired. 

 

Among the obvious (marriage certificates, birth certificates, etc.) we submitted:

 

- a joint tax return for 2017

- my W-2s and pay stubs 

- a letter from my employer saying that they want to employ me forever because I'm fantastic

- my husband's business and other licenses 

- medical, dental, and home insurance statements in both of our names 

- a cell phone bill in both of our names

- a deed to the house, owned in full by my husband only

- some bills to our address in my name only - internet, phone, etc. 

- a lone photograph of our family for no apparent reason 

- affidavits from my coworker, my husband's ex-coworker and now family friend, and my husband's parents 

 

Since we don't have any joint accounts (though we do have joint finances, in that we both pay for things), no photographs of ourselves ever, and since my USC sponsor isn't really much of a sponsor at the moment, I was quite a bit worried. 

 

I therefore assembled the following for the interview, on top of updated bills already listed:

 

- car insurance we finally consolidated (we still own our cars individually)

- property card for the house with my husband as the owner, and the bills that he handles in his name (like electricity) 

- memberships to various things like Costco and the Children's Museum with both of our names, and pet insurance records with both of us as owners 

- recent family trips: a flight we all took together, some recent hotels in my name only but for two adults and a baby, and a giant list of AirBnbs and associated reviews from the hosts, most of whom mentioned both of us, our baby, and the dogs. 

 

The interview:

 

We showed up about 15 minutes early and didn't realize we had to check in. We were called when our CO was wondering if we showed. I apologized profusely. My husband was annoyingly calm. 

 

We were called about 10-15 minutes after our official interview time. The CO introduced herself and went through our forms, confirming generic biographical information (name, address, date of birth, date of marriage). She checkmarked as she went along. She reshuffled the documents for a while and I told her that I swear I organized it better than that, she chuckled. 

 

She asked where we met, and I explained in two sentences. She wrote it down. 

 

She confirmed my husband's company name and asked where I worked. 

 

She asked the "are you a terrorist" questions one by one on the application form, checkmarking as I confirmed no. 

 

She then asked if I have any additional evidence for our marriage. I unloaded everything I prepared, down to pet insurance. She didn't look at it while she was taking it and adding it to the binder. I'm pretty sure she would be rolling her eyes and laughing if she weren't so professional. 

 

She then told us the card will be in the mail shortly and explained the ROC procedure. My husband asked me if I needed to write that down. I said I was fully aware. CO laughed and said she'll walk us out and congratulations. 

Edited by eckoin

Adjusting from TN to GC as spouse of USC

2015-07-24: TN received at CBP

2015-11-23: TN received at CBP - employer change

2017-06-12: Married

2017-08-15: First child

2018-06-25: Mailed I-485, I-864, I-130/I-130A, and I-765 to USCIS

2018-07-03: NOA1 for I-485, I-130, and I-765

2018-07-24: Biometrics appointment

2018-07-25: Biometrics review completed

2018-08-28: Expedite request submitted for EAD via USCIS support line

2018-08-31: Request for additional information for EAD expedite mailed by USCIS

2018-09-07: Request for additional information for EAD expedite received in the mail

2018-09-07: Additional information for EAD expedite faxed to USCIS

2018-09-10: Mailed I-131 to USCIS

2018-09-14: EAD approved

2018-09-18: EAD approval notice received in the mail 

2018-09-18: EAD card was mailed 

2018-09-20: NOA1 for I-131

2018-09-21: EAD and SSN received in the mail

2018-10-11: Case is ready to be scheduled for interview

2018-10-31: Interview is scheduled

2018-11-21: TN expired

2018-12-11: AOS Interview - approved 

2018-12-11: Card is being produced 

2018-12-13: Card was mailed 

2018-12-18: Card received in the mail

------------------

2020-12-11: Conditional green card expires 

 

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Congrats, this is so great to read, and very reassuring! I've been following your timeline in hopes that my TN AOS goes just as smoothly. 

 

(Also, you apologizing profusely with an annoying calm partner is exactly how I expect me and my husband to be at the interview lol)


AOS from TN Status

 

07/07/2018 -- Married

12/01/2018 -- Mailed AOS Package (I-130/I-130A, I-485, I-864, I-765, I-131) to Chicago Lockbox

12/03/2018 [Day 1] -- AOS Package received at Chicago Lockbox

12/07/2018 [Day 4] -- Credit card charged $1760 for I-130, I-485 + biometrics fee (via Form G-1450)

12/11/2018 [Day 8] -- Four (4) text alerts confirming receipt of case (12:23AM, 12:28AM, 12:29AM, 12:29AM)  

12/17/2018 [Day 14] -- Four (4) Form I-797C (Notice of Action) received in mail (Notice Date: 12/10/2018) 

12/21/2018 [Day 18] -- Biometrics Appointment Notice received (Appointment Date: 01/02/2019)

12/24/2018 [Day 21] -- Courtesy letter received re: I-693 (not submitted with initial petition)

01/02/2019 [Day 30] -- Biometrics completed 

01/07/2019 [Day 35] -- Biometrics review completed (Case Tracker status updated for I-485)

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Congratulations! I really liked the distinction you made between having joint accounts and joint finances. You were able to show evidence of commingling of finances because you have joint financial responsibilities EVEN THOUGH you do not have a joint bank account. 

 

Showing Airbnb reviews is also genius! Very creative. 

 

All the best,

 

USC4SPOUSE


Marriage-based AOS - Concurrent filing.
03/14/2018 - AOS package sent via FedEx to Chicago Lockbox.
03/16/2018 - FedEx confirmation of delivery to USCIS.
03/28/2018 - Four Email/Text notifications 11:18pm; 11:21pm; 11:24pm; 11:27pm.
04/02/2018 - Four I-797 Notice of Action letters received by mail.
04/06/2018 - Biometrics Appointment Notice for 04/18/17.
04/12/2018 - Biometrics Walk-in - Mission accomplished.
04/13/2018 - "We reviewed your biometrics and are still processing your case" - updated 04/15/2018

04/23/2018 - "Case is ready to be scheduled for an interview"

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On 12/22/2018 at 4:40 PM, USC4SPOUSE said:

Congratulations! I really liked the distinction you made between having joint accounts and joint finances. You were able to show evidence of commingling of finances because you have joint financial responsibilities EVEN THOUGH you do not have a joint bank account. 

 

Showing Airbnb reviews is also genius! Very creative. 

 

All the best,

 

USC4SPOUSE

I got the "joint account" vs "joint finances" from you guys! I was really worried about that, but this forum really helped reframe our financial commingling in a way that made sense, so I organized our bills into three piles and explained it when I handed it to the officer, she had no followup questions and seemed to completely get the gist. 

 

I was pretty proud of my Airbnb find as well! So glad to have had hosts who actually hung out with us. We stay in one river cabin out in TN pretty regularly, and the host wrote these awesome reviews about how great our family is--score! 


Adjusting from TN to GC as spouse of USC

2015-07-24: TN received at CBP

2015-11-23: TN received at CBP - employer change

2017-06-12: Married

2017-08-15: First child

2018-06-25: Mailed I-485, I-864, I-130/I-130A, and I-765 to USCIS

2018-07-03: NOA1 for I-485, I-130, and I-765

2018-07-24: Biometrics appointment

2018-07-25: Biometrics review completed

2018-08-28: Expedite request submitted for EAD via USCIS support line

2018-08-31: Request for additional information for EAD expedite mailed by USCIS

2018-09-07: Request for additional information for EAD expedite received in the mail

2018-09-07: Additional information for EAD expedite faxed to USCIS

2018-09-10: Mailed I-131 to USCIS

2018-09-14: EAD approved

2018-09-18: EAD approval notice received in the mail 

2018-09-18: EAD card was mailed 

2018-09-20: NOA1 for I-131

2018-09-21: EAD and SSN received in the mail

2018-10-11: Case is ready to be scheduled for interview

2018-10-31: Interview is scheduled

2018-11-21: TN expired

2018-12-11: AOS Interview - approved 

2018-12-11: Card is being produced 

2018-12-13: Card was mailed 

2018-12-18: Card received in the mail

------------------

2020-12-11: Conditional green card expires 

 

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