You've probably heard that you'll need to provide evidence of your marriage relationship as part of the green card application process. And sure, you can find lists of suggested evidence both in our blog and numerous places online. But what things should you NOT submit? This is a trickier question. We see a lot more people have trouble based on things they submitted rather than things they omitted. This post is the first in a series devoted to "what not to do" when it comes to relationship evidence.
The first thing NOT to include is anything overtly sexual in nature. When the U.S. government says that they want to confirm that you have a real, legitimate, "bona fide" marriage, that really doesn’t mean that they want to know EVERYTHING. And contrary to Internet rumors, they don’t ask about your sex life at the marriage interviews. We’ve found that some couples, maybe because they think the government needs to confirm they’re really a couple, or maybe because they’re naturally a bit exhibitionist, instinctively want to include evidence that frankly is just TMI. It’s not that your case would be denied on the grounds of oversharing your personal life, but it’s kind of weird for the officer. (or for a creepy officer, maybe they’ll enjoy it? Eww, we really don’t wanna think about that!)
For our clients' cases, we remove any evidence that they’ve given us with references to their preferred positions or toys or selfies of them in bed together or graphic references in their text messages. I guarantee that some of you right now are reading this blog article thinking "Who in the world would submit something like that to the government?!" But I promise you, other readers are thinking "Oh, it didn’t even occur to me that would be a problem. I guess I’ll have to take that out..."
If you're trying to think of a test for should I or shouldn’t I include this, here’s a good rule of thumb: If you saw that same evidence but it was your parents rather than you, would you go blech?
Yeah, so leave it out :)
Our firm's theory of preparing immigration cases is to provide plenty of evidence of your legitimate relationship while provoking as few emotional reactions or questions from the officer as possible. Our ideal case filing makes the officer go “Yep, everything is here, and this looks like a perfectly legitimate relationship and the immigrant looks 100% eligible and I have no further questions and I’m going to stamp this for approval right now. I have to do the interview, but basically, it’s just a formality because they told me I had to. I’ve already made up my mind favorably about these people.”
Anything that distracts from that is not ideal. So leave it out!