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MaryLoves

I751 Opening Joint Saving account?

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Would it look bad to USCIS if you opened a joint saving account right before or after I751? Would it look like you just did that to pass the I751?

 

I have to submit I751 packet very very soon, and my spouse and I don't have any joint account. 

Since we live in an overpopulated area of the US and with this pandemic, the processing time says 16 months - 23 months. I am taking this as USCIS looking at our case at least one year from now, during which time there will be more evidence. 

I am perfectly aware that they will of course take a look at our initially-submitted documents, which lacks joint bank statements. Now, my spouse got a job recently for the first time in a long time, and we both have income.

We are now wanting to open a joint saving account so we can put some money every time we get a paycheck, so we can save money together under both of our names.

 

There's no way we can include this in our current I751 packet because it is too late, but if we do get an RFE in the future, we should have, by then, some bank statements from our joint saving account.

Do you think this is a good idea at all, or does this look like we just did it for I751 because we are planning to do this AFTER or AROUND when we apply for I751?

 

Also, if this is still better than not having a joint account at all, is it okay to have not much money saved in it? Say, my spouse and I both contribute 150 each, every month, so 300/month. Or if one of us stops getting income, the other person will be the only contributor and the saving amount will increase 150 every month. Or does USCIS expect to see a great amount saved to believe the marriage is genuine?

Edited by MaryLoves

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Don't worry about whether it 'looks good or not.'  You do need combined financials, and if you do get an RFE you will have this account to show for that. 


"Wherever you go, you take yourself with you." --Neil Gaiman

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Filed: Citizen (apr) Country: Australia
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1 hour ago, MaryLoves said:

Well, as long as USCIS will accept that evidence produced AFTER initial I751 packet was submitted, as evidence.

Just put a note in your cover letter that you have not combined your finances due to <explanation>, but now that your spouse has finally gotten employment, each of you will begin to contribute to a joint account.  Go ahead and open the account now, and, if you can, include the first statement (showing both of you contributing), and then save every statement from now on, in case there are questions.

 

If you have other good evidence your lack of a joint account might not be a problem at all.

 

Best of luck!

 

Sukie in NY


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1 hour ago, Sukie said:

Just put a note in your cover letter that you have not combined your finances due to <explanation>, but now that your spouse has finally gotten employment, each of you will begin to contribute to a joint account.  Go ahead and open the account now, and, if you can, include the first statement (showing both of you contributing), and then save every statement from now on, in case there are questions.

 

If you have other good evidence your lack of a joint account might not be a problem at all.

 

Best of luck!

 

Sukie in NY

It sucks that there is no one specific piece of evidence that we "must" provide, yet USCIS tends to RFE you if you didn't submit joint bank account or joint credit card.

If they want to RFE you for not submitting joint bank statements, they should just make joint bank statements as a "mandatory" evidence altogether.

 

I have seen many couples where they submit joint tax returns, 401k, all insurances together, but without joint bank statements, and they still got an RFE asking for joint bank statements. I feel like this is stupid because all the other stuff like joint tax returns, 401k and life insurance etc should still show that the marriage is real. I don't see why they half-require joint bank statements. 

 

 

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21 hours ago, MaryLoves said:

It sucks that there is no one specific piece of evidence that we "must" provide, yet USCIS tends to RFE you if you didn't submit joint bank account or joint credit card.

If they want to RFE you for not submitting joint bank statements, they should just make joint bank statements as a "mandatory" evidence altogether.

 

I have seen many couples where they submit joint tax returns, 401k, all insurances together, but without joint bank statements, and they still got an RFE asking for joint bank statements. I feel like this is stupid because all the other stuff like joint tax returns, 401k and life insurance etc should still show that the marriage is real. I don't see why they half-require joint bank statements. 

 

 

The important thing is to explain UP FRONT that you don't have joint accounts.  If you don't, then they will send an RFE.  But if you tell them up front, and WHY, then you usually will not get an RFE.  The important thing is to show how you do life together, and how you handle your finances.  If one person pays all the bills, because they are the only one working, that makes perfect sense.  But you have to TELL them that, because they won't be able to read your mind.

 

Best of luck.

 

Sukie in NY


Spoiler

 

Spoiler

Our Prior Journey

N-400 Naturalization

18-Feb-2018 - submitted N-400 online, credit card charged

18-Feb-2018 - NOA1

12-Mar-2018 - Biometrics 

18-June-2018 - Notice of interview received

26-July-2018 - Interview  - APPROVED!!!

26-July-2018 - Oath Ceremony Scheduled

17-Aug-2018 - Oath Ceremony

 

 

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1 hour ago, Sukie said:

The important thing is to explain UP FRONT that you don't have joint accounts.  If you don't, then they will send an RFE.  But if you tell them up front, and WHY, then you usually will not get an RFE.  The important thing is to show how you do life together, and how you handle your finances.  If one person pays all the bills, because they are the only one working, that makes perfect sense.  But you have to TELL them that, because they won't be able to read your mind.

 

Best of luck.

 

Sukie in NY

Oh so, it is either showing the bank statements OR giving an explanation on WHY not have joint bank account, to avoid RFE.  I wish USCIS was more direct at this and specifically said in the instruction "You need to either submit the joint bank statement OR give us an explanation on why you don't have it, if you don't have it."

 

Because my attorney is unwilling to include a letter of this sort, saying that kind of letter can make your case look suspicious.  I told him I want to include just a very quick explanation (like one or two sentences basically saying we simply didn't use a joint bank account because one person was mainly the only income earner, and pay the bills for both).

 

Do you think this is enough explanation? Should I include this in the cover letter as it is just a few sentences, or should I include a separate letter for that? 

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1 hour ago, Sukie said:

The important thing is to explain UP FRONT that you don't have joint accounts.  If you don't, then they will send an RFE.  But if you tell them up front, and WHY, then you usually will not get an RFE.  The important thing is to show how you do life together, and how you handle your finances.  If one person pays all the bills, because they are the only one working, that makes perfect sense.  But you have to TELL them that, because they won't be able to read your mind.

 

Best of luck.

 

Sukie in NY

We actually did open a joint bank account, but we didn't really use it because I was the only income earner most of the time, and I didnt put money in the account because she would use it. So I was paying everything from my personal checking account. 

 

But I wouldn't want to lie to USCIS saying we never opened a joint bank account. Do you think I could say something like: 

 

Regarding our joint bank statements, we are afraid we cannot provide this evidence.

My spouse <XXXX: name> did not have any income during the past 2 years, and I was supporting both of us. We simply did not find the necessity of using a joint checking account.

Fortunately, XXXX got hired again  on MM/dd/yyyy and we have decided to open a joint saving account, so we can contribute some every month for our future. I have included in this I-751 packet the proof of opening a joint saving account.

 

Does this sound okay?

Edited by MaryLoves

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20 minutes ago, MaryLoves said:

We actually did open a joint bank account, but we didn't really use it because I was the only income earner most of the time, and I didnt put money in the account because she would use it. So I was paying everything from my personal checking account. 

 

But I wouldn't want to lie to USCIS saying we never opened a joint bank account. Do you think I could say something like: 

 

Regarding our joint bank statements, we are afraid we cannot provide this evidence.

My spouse <XXXX: name> did not have any income during the past 2 years, and I was supporting both of us. We simply did not find the necessity of using a joint checking account.

Fortunately, XXXX got hired again  on MM/dd/yyyy and we have decided to open a joint saving account, so we can contribute some every month for our future. I have included in this I-751 packet the proof of opening a joint saving account.

 

Does this sound okay?

Throw out the "Regarding our joint bank statements..." sentence, and just start with "My spouse<name>..."

 

Please note:  joint accounts and statements are NOT a hard requirement!!!  They are a usual submission with most packets, but they are NOT mandatory.  Because most people submit them, and you are not going to, it's best to say so up front.

 

Just as another example, MOST people submit a lease or mortgage or deed that shows that both of the spouses live together.  I happened to have owned our home long before we met - so I could not submit a lease or deed.  So I just stated the fact that I owned the home prior to our meeting each other, and I submitted a copy of our home owner's insurance showing both of our names, plus copies of both of our driver's licenses showing the same address.  Again, a lease is NOT mandatory, but most people submit it.  So I nipped any RFE in the bud (and we sailed through) in my cover letter.

 

Best of luck!

 

Sukie in NY


Spoiler

 

Spoiler

Our Prior Journey

N-400 Naturalization

18-Feb-2018 - submitted N-400 online, credit card charged

18-Feb-2018 - NOA1

12-Mar-2018 - Biometrics 

18-June-2018 - Notice of interview received

26-July-2018 - Interview  - APPROVED!!!

26-July-2018 - Oath Ceremony Scheduled

17-Aug-2018 - Oath Ceremony

 

 

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I just hope I won't get any RFE, and I am trying my best to collect as much other evidence as possible. 

 

By the way, I am aware this is not fully on I-751 topic, but is it ever possible to switch from I-751 process to H1B process?

Let's say you are working for a company that really needs you. But your I-751 with your spouse was ever denied for some reason. If your company sponsors you for H1b, can you transfer your status to H1b status?

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