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sherriJoy

Sudden Divorce while ROC I-751 Pending

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Hello VJFamily!

 

I’ve been lurking around since AOS and VJ has been so helpful. I’m posting today in need of some guidance as everything happened so fast.. My husband told me this Wednesday that he’s thinking about leaving me, and yesterday he told me that he’s moving out next Monday and will be filing a divorce. It all happened so fast!! My heart is broken because I still love him but there is nothing I can do now.

 

We got married in June 2016 (he is a US citizen), same month we filed AOS, CGC arrived in September 2016, expiring JAN 2019. We filed ROC JOINTLY October 2018, received extension letter in Dec 2018, and now (JAN 2019) this happened.

 

When we submitted ROC, we submitted the following evidence:

  • joint bank statements
  • joint credit card
  • joint mortgage
  • house contract (we built a house together) & house is under both of our names
  • tax returns filed jointly for two years
  • joint auto insurance
  • medical plan that covers both people
  • Affidavit from two mutual friends

 

Since filing ROC jointly, we also went to DC (have tickets and other evidence), re-elected medical insurance (covering both people), had family Holidays (have group pictures). We also have been going through marriage counseling (but I thought things were going well!!) since March 2018, and have receipts/insurance claims/emails to prove.

 

What’s the next step for me now? I haven’t done much research on the divorce (I never thought we would divorce…), but he told me that it would take 75ish days for the divorce to finalize. Should I notify the USCIS right now? Or should I wait for the divorce to finalize while start preparing materials to send to USCIS?

 

He mentioned that if I need his testimony or something to approve this marriage was entered into good faith, he would do it - is this going to be helpful?


 

 

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You can still continue with the joint petition even if separated, provided the USC is willing to cooperate and attend any interview if called for one.  This can be tricky, because even the most amicable of divorces can affect emotions and an interview could be easily "tanked" by the spouse depending on the mood at the time.  It's happened where the USC spouse decides to sabotage the ROC interview in the moment for whatever reasons, after playing "nice" all the way beforehand.  Personally, I wouldn't bank my future on someone I was no longer involved with, but that's just me. 

 

You can also switch your filing to a divorce waiver petition ahead of time, by sending a request in writing to the field office adjudicating your ROC (which removes the USC from the process) and letting them know that you two are separated/started divorce proceedings.  I would suggest doing this now, so that by the time your interview rolled around (going by the timeline your spouse mentioned) you'd have the final divorce decree in hand to submit without further delaying your case.  

 

Alternately, if an interview is scheduled and you attend without your spouse/your spouse refuses to attend, you can also inform the IO that you want to switch to a divorce waiver there, instead of receiving an automatic denial.

With a divorce waiver request, the I-751 cannot be approved until you submit to USCIS the final divorce decree.  However, you do not need to be officially divorced before filing the waiver request.

 

I would strongly suggest choosing the divorce waiver path, instead of continuing the joint petition, and informing USCIS you two are separating (whether formally or informally) so as not to have any cause for USCIS to say you misrepresented yourself later on.  It's happened where a VJ member's N400 was denied because the couple never informed the officer they were undergoing a divorce during their ROC interview (the IO felt the 10-year green card was incorrectly approved).

 

 

Edited by Going through

Applied for Naturalization based on 5-year Residency - 96 Days To Complete Citizenship!

July 14, 2017 (Day 00) -  Submitted N400 Application, filed online

July 21, 2017 (Day 07) -  NOA Receipt received in the mail

July 22, 2017 (Day 08) - Biometrics appointment scheduled online, letter mailed out

July 25, 2017 (Day 11) - Biometrics PDF posted online

July 28, 2017 (Day 14) - Biometrics letter received in the mail, appointment for 08/08/17

Aug 08, 2017 (Day 24) - Biometrics (fingerprinting) completed

Aug 14, 2017 (Day 30) - Online EGOV status shows "Interview Scheduled, will mail appointment letter"

Aug 16, 2017 (Day 32) - Online MYUSCIS status shows "Interview Scheduled, read the letter we mailed you..."

Aug 17, 2017 (Day 33) - Interview Appointment Letter PDF posted online---GOT AN INTERVIEW DATE!!!

Aug 21, 2017 (Day 37) - Interview Appointment Letter received in the mail, appointment for 09/27/17

Sep. 27, 2017 (Day 74) - Naturalization Interview--- read my experience here

Sep. 27, 2017 (Day 74) - Online MYUSCIS status shows "Oath Ceremony Notice mailed"

Sep. 28, 2017 (Day 75) - Oath Ceremony Letter PDF posted online--Ceremony for 10/19/17

Oct. 02, 2017 (Day 79) -  Oath Ceremony Letter received in the mail

Oct. 19, 2017 (Day 96) -  Oath Ceremony-- read my experience here

 

 

 

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9 minutes ago, Going through said:

You can still continue with the joint petition even if separated, provided the USC is willing to cooperate and attend any interview if called for one.  This can be tricky, because even the most amicable of divorces can affect emotions and an interview could be easily "tanked" by the spouse depending on the mood at the time. 

 

 

I don’t think you should even suggest that (however mildly) Not only because it could be construed as fraud, but particularly because it opens up a can of worms which can bite OP not only now but several years down the line.

Edited by HonoraryCitizen

I am not in this world to live up to your expectations,

Neither are you here to live up to mine.

I don't owe no one no obligation 
So everything is fine, fine

I said, I am that I am I am, I am, I am

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Just now, HonoraryCitizen said:

I don’t think you should even suggest that (however mildly) Not only because it’s fraud contrary to VJ TOS, but because it opens up a can of worms which can bite OP not only now but several years down the line.

It's not fraud at all.  There is nothing against USCIS policies about not being able to submit a joint petition when separated later on.  Separated couples have even attended interviews together..the fraud part is if the applicant did NOT inform USCIS that they were separated at the interview/going through divorce proceedings.


Applied for Naturalization based on 5-year Residency - 96 Days To Complete Citizenship!

July 14, 2017 (Day 00) -  Submitted N400 Application, filed online

July 21, 2017 (Day 07) -  NOA Receipt received in the mail

July 22, 2017 (Day 08) - Biometrics appointment scheduled online, letter mailed out

July 25, 2017 (Day 11) - Biometrics PDF posted online

July 28, 2017 (Day 14) - Biometrics letter received in the mail, appointment for 08/08/17

Aug 08, 2017 (Day 24) - Biometrics (fingerprinting) completed

Aug 14, 2017 (Day 30) - Online EGOV status shows "Interview Scheduled, will mail appointment letter"

Aug 16, 2017 (Day 32) - Online MYUSCIS status shows "Interview Scheduled, read the letter we mailed you..."

Aug 17, 2017 (Day 33) - Interview Appointment Letter PDF posted online---GOT AN INTERVIEW DATE!!!

Aug 21, 2017 (Day 37) - Interview Appointment Letter received in the mail, appointment for 09/27/17

Sep. 27, 2017 (Day 74) - Naturalization Interview--- read my experience here

Sep. 27, 2017 (Day 74) - Online MYUSCIS status shows "Oath Ceremony Notice mailed"

Sep. 28, 2017 (Day 75) - Oath Ceremony Letter PDF posted online--Ceremony for 10/19/17

Oct. 02, 2017 (Day 79) -  Oath Ceremony Letter received in the mail

Oct. 19, 2017 (Day 96) -  Oath Ceremony-- read my experience here

 

 

 

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7 minutes ago, HonoraryCitizen said:

I don’t think you should even suggest that (however mildly) Not only because it’s fraud contrary to VJ TOS, but because it opens up a can of worms which can bite OP not only now but several years down the line.

@Going through was not advocating fraud; see this link: http://www.hummelaw.com/Blog/2015/May/Separated-but-not-Divorced-Navigating-the-Jointl.aspx

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Just now, Going through said:

It's not fraud at all.  There is nothing against USCIS policies about not being able to submit a joint petition when separated later on.  Separated couples have even attended interviews together..the fraud part is if the applicant did NOT inform USCIS that they were separated at the interview/going through divorce proceedings.

I respectfully disagree. By that token after attending our adjustment interview, we could divorce the very next day while the petition has not be adjudicated without notifying USCIS? No, there has been a material change and the man is moving out in three days, realistically that’s before the i751 will be adjudicated. Moving out and not living together = marriage is not thriving, and that’s a condition for filing jointly.


I am not in this world to live up to your expectations,

Neither are you here to live up to mine.

I don't owe no one no obligation 
So everything is fine, fine

I said, I am that I am I am, I am, I am

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6 minutes ago, accumbyte said:

Are they going to notify USCIS that that husband is moving out on Monday? Because the regulations require they should. Bottom line filing joint after separation is not a the best strategy and could cause problems.

 

Quote

 

If my spouse and I separate and I move to a new residence, should I notify USCIS?

Under applicable regulations, non-citizens are required to notify USCIS of any change of address within ten (10) days of moving or relocating. This is done by filing an AR-11 Change of Address form, which can be paper filed or electronically filed online with USCIS. 

 

 

Edited by HonoraryCitizen

I am not in this world to live up to your expectations,

Neither are you here to live up to mine.

I don't owe no one no obligation 
So everything is fine, fine

I said, I am that I am I am, I am, I am

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Thank you all for your reply. I was thinking about going through the divorce waiver path but wasn't sure when I should do that. After reading your reply, I'm planning to do it next week.

 

There doesn't seem to be a form about this? Should I write a letter/personal statement to USCIS? Or to the field office? My case hasn't been transferred to local office yet but I know there's a filed office in Detroit, where we had our AOS interview. 

 

Should I also include new evidence since we filed jointly to prove the marriage was in good faith?

Edited by sherriJoy

 

 

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12 minutes ago, HonoraryCitizen said:

Bottom line filing joint after separation is not a the best strategy and could cause problems.

That was @Going through's point in the initial response. But mentioning it is not advocating fraud, so not a VJ TOS violation. Obviously, all USCIS guidelines/regulations should still be followed.

Edited by accumbyte

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16 minutes ago, HonoraryCitizen said:

I respectfully disagree. By that token after attending our adjustment interview, we could divorce the very next day while the petition has not be adjudicated without notifying USCIS? No, there has been a material change and the man is moving out in three days, realistically that’s before the i751 will be adjudicated. Moving out and not living together = marriage is not thriving, and that’s a condition for filing jointly.

1)  I mentioned a few times in my original post in this thread that USCIS has to be notified (either in writing, or in person).

2)  Living together is NOT a requirement for ROC approval (or else military spouses would never be approved while the other is on active duty, and neither would abuse-waiver applicants who no longer live with their abuser)---if married, the requirement is living in marital union---not the same as physically living together----the requirement with a divorce waiver filing is that the applicant must prove the marriage was entered into with bonafide intent.

Edited by Going through

Applied for Naturalization based on 5-year Residency - 96 Days To Complete Citizenship!

July 14, 2017 (Day 00) -  Submitted N400 Application, filed online

July 21, 2017 (Day 07) -  NOA Receipt received in the mail

July 22, 2017 (Day 08) - Biometrics appointment scheduled online, letter mailed out

July 25, 2017 (Day 11) - Biometrics PDF posted online

July 28, 2017 (Day 14) - Biometrics letter received in the mail, appointment for 08/08/17

Aug 08, 2017 (Day 24) - Biometrics (fingerprinting) completed

Aug 14, 2017 (Day 30) - Online EGOV status shows "Interview Scheduled, will mail appointment letter"

Aug 16, 2017 (Day 32) - Online MYUSCIS status shows "Interview Scheduled, read the letter we mailed you..."

Aug 17, 2017 (Day 33) - Interview Appointment Letter PDF posted online---GOT AN INTERVIEW DATE!!!

Aug 21, 2017 (Day 37) - Interview Appointment Letter received in the mail, appointment for 09/27/17

Sep. 27, 2017 (Day 74) - Naturalization Interview--- read my experience here

Sep. 27, 2017 (Day 74) - Online MYUSCIS status shows "Oath Ceremony Notice mailed"

Sep. 28, 2017 (Day 75) - Oath Ceremony Letter PDF posted online--Ceremony for 10/19/17

Oct. 02, 2017 (Day 79) -  Oath Ceremony Letter received in the mail

Oct. 19, 2017 (Day 96) -  Oath Ceremony-- read my experience here

 

 

 

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2 minutes ago, HonoraryCitizen said:

Are they going to notify USCIS that that husband is moving out on Monday? Because the regulations require they should. Bottom line filing joint after separation is not a winning strategy.

 

 

The OP said they already file for ROC last october 2018 and the husband is USC and hes the one that moving out/change address. Just a common sense,im sure its not their intent to separate after few months that they submit ROC.

@Going through comment is a complete package of explanation/advice about the OP situation..he maybe say something that you disagree with but he gave a detailed opinion.

Just saying.

 

if you know better which one would you suggest?

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11 minutes ago, sherriJoy said:

Thank you all for your reply. I was thinking about going through the divorce waiver path but wasn't sure when I should do that. After reading your reply, I'm planning to do it next week.

 

There doesn't seem to be a form about this? Should I write a letter/personal statement to USCIS? Or to the field office? My case hasn't been transferred to local office yet but I know there's a filed office in Detroit, where we had our AOS interview. 

 

Should I also include new evidence since we filed jointly to prove the marriage was in good faith?

You can send a letter or call the USCIS along with extra evidence.  Write your case number on everything.  I would attempt an infopass if possible. 


You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself any direction you choose.  - Dr. Seuss

 

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9 minutes ago, sherriJoy said:

There doesn't seem to be a form about this? Should I write a letter/personal statement to USCIS? Or to the field office? My case hasn't been transferred to local office yet but I know there's a filed office in Detroit, where we had our AOS interview. 

A personal statement is fine that separation/divorce proceedings have been initiated and you are requesting to switch to filing with a divorce waiver.  I would also include a copy of the NOA receipt for your ROC filing with the letter.


Applied for Naturalization based on 5-year Residency - 96 Days To Complete Citizenship!

July 14, 2017 (Day 00) -  Submitted N400 Application, filed online

July 21, 2017 (Day 07) -  NOA Receipt received in the mail

July 22, 2017 (Day 08) - Biometrics appointment scheduled online, letter mailed out

July 25, 2017 (Day 11) - Biometrics PDF posted online

July 28, 2017 (Day 14) - Biometrics letter received in the mail, appointment for 08/08/17

Aug 08, 2017 (Day 24) - Biometrics (fingerprinting) completed

Aug 14, 2017 (Day 30) - Online EGOV status shows "Interview Scheduled, will mail appointment letter"

Aug 16, 2017 (Day 32) - Online MYUSCIS status shows "Interview Scheduled, read the letter we mailed you..."

Aug 17, 2017 (Day 33) - Interview Appointment Letter PDF posted online---GOT AN INTERVIEW DATE!!!

Aug 21, 2017 (Day 37) - Interview Appointment Letter received in the mail, appointment for 09/27/17

Sep. 27, 2017 (Day 74) - Naturalization Interview--- read my experience here

Sep. 27, 2017 (Day 74) - Online MYUSCIS status shows "Oath Ceremony Notice mailed"

Sep. 28, 2017 (Day 75) - Oath Ceremony Letter PDF posted online--Ceremony for 10/19/17

Oct. 02, 2017 (Day 79) -  Oath Ceremony Letter received in the mail

Oct. 19, 2017 (Day 96) -  Oath Ceremony-- read my experience here

 

 

 

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24 minutes ago, HonoraryCitizen said:

Are they going to notify USCIS that that husband is moving out on Monday? Because the regulations require they should. 

 

24 minutes ago, HonoraryCitizen said:

If my spouse and I separate and I move to a new residence, should I notify USCIS?

Under applicable regulations, non-citizens are required to notify USCIS of any change of address within ten (10) days of moving or relocating. This is done by filing an AR-11 Change of Address form, which can be paper filed or electronically filed online with USCIS. 

 

The spouse is a USC, not a "non-citizen".  The OP (the "non-citizen" in this case) is not the one moving.


Applied for Naturalization based on 5-year Residency - 96 Days To Complete Citizenship!

July 14, 2017 (Day 00) -  Submitted N400 Application, filed online

July 21, 2017 (Day 07) -  NOA Receipt received in the mail

July 22, 2017 (Day 08) - Biometrics appointment scheduled online, letter mailed out

July 25, 2017 (Day 11) - Biometrics PDF posted online

July 28, 2017 (Day 14) - Biometrics letter received in the mail, appointment for 08/08/17

Aug 08, 2017 (Day 24) - Biometrics (fingerprinting) completed

Aug 14, 2017 (Day 30) - Online EGOV status shows "Interview Scheduled, will mail appointment letter"

Aug 16, 2017 (Day 32) - Online MYUSCIS status shows "Interview Scheduled, read the letter we mailed you..."

Aug 17, 2017 (Day 33) - Interview Appointment Letter PDF posted online---GOT AN INTERVIEW DATE!!!

Aug 21, 2017 (Day 37) - Interview Appointment Letter received in the mail, appointment for 09/27/17

Sep. 27, 2017 (Day 74) - Naturalization Interview--- read my experience here

Sep. 27, 2017 (Day 74) - Online MYUSCIS status shows "Oath Ceremony Notice mailed"

Sep. 28, 2017 (Day 75) - Oath Ceremony Letter PDF posted online--Ceremony for 10/19/17

Oct. 02, 2017 (Day 79) -  Oath Ceremony Letter received in the mail

Oct. 19, 2017 (Day 96) -  Oath Ceremony-- read my experience here

 

 

 

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