Proving a marital relationship when applying for a green card

By Atty. Crispin Caday Lozano 

Under the Trump Administration the processing of adjustment of status from the time of filing to final approval is now taking at least eight months.  However, if you are intending to file an adjustment of status, the interview with the USCIS officer has become more lengthy and detailed.  Aside from the extensive vetting of your personal information, the requirement of submitting joint documents has been raised.  The interviewing officer will check your knowledge of each other, how your relationship started and developed and your familiarity with each other. 

The legal requirement to prevail on a basic spousal petition is to demonstrate by a preponderance of the evidence that the relationship was created not solely for immigration purposes. The true test is met by showing that the couple did not marry solely to gain immigration benefits or to circumvent the immigration laws.


 The interview is often the first opportunity that the USCIS officer has to decide whether your marriage is “for real.” The documents that you show are important factors in the decision. They should show that you and your spouse’s lives are intertwined and that you trust each other with your financial and personal matters.

Below is a list of documents most immigrants present.

  • Rental agreements, leases, or mortgages showing that you live together and/or have leased or bought property in both spouses’ names
  • Your mutual child’s birth certificate or a doctor’s report saying that one of you is pregnant
  • Utility bills in both your names
  • Joint bank statements
  • Joint credit card statements
  • Evidence that one spouse has made the other a beneficiary on his/her life or health insurance or retirement account
  • Auto registrations showing joint ownership and/or addresses
  • Joint club memberships
  • receipts from gifts that you purchased for one another (these should be typical gift purchases, such as jewelry, flowers, or candy)
  • Emails, texts, or letters between you and your spouse, and letters from friends and family to each or both of you mailed to your joint address
  • Proof of having named the other spouse as the beneficiary of a will
  • signed, sworn affidavits from friends or family who have observed the progress of your relationship and your wedding, and sharing their knowledge in detail
  • Photos of you and your spouse taken before and during your marriage, including photos from your wedding.


Using multiple affidavits from a diverse set of witnesses bolsters the probative value of using these statements.

Note: This is not a legal advice.  You should seek the advice of an experienced immigration lawyer about your specific circumstances.  If you have committed a crime you may seek an appointment in our office to know you options.




  1. On November 16, 2017, we received an approval from Immigration Court for a waiver of misrepresentation for entering as single daughter of U.S. citizen but actually married.
  2. On October 25, 2017, we received an approval of I-485 adjustment of status for our client who has a DUI but has proof that he has cleared his record.
  3. On October 20, 2017, we received an approval of naturalization for a client who  was granted a waiver of misrepresentation in Immigration Court.
  4. On October 16, 2017, we received from USCIS an approval for an adjustment of  status for same sex marriage, after two scheduled interviews.
  5. On October 9, 2017, we received an approval from USCIS for adjustment of  status for a client who entered as a seaman but has Sec. 245 (i) eligibility.
  6. On October 2, 2017, we received an approval of adjustment of status from USCIS for a client who entered without inspection but has Sec. 245(i).
  7. For the week ending September 15, 2017, we received three Immigrant Visa  Approvals in U.S. Embassy Manila for three applicants who entered as seaman under the Provisional Waiver Program.
  8. For the week ending September 8, 2017, we received four N-400 Naturalization  approvals.
  9. On August 31, 2017 we received an approval of adjustment of status for a client who problems with birth certificate which we corrected.
  10. On August 25, 2017, we received approval of I-751 removal of condition on same sex marriage/
  11. On August 18, 2017, we received two approvals for N-400 applications.
  12. On August 16, 2017, we received an approval of I-601A provisional waiver for a  Mexican client.

If you have immigration problems the Law Offices of Crispin C. Lozano can help you find a solution before your problem gets worse which could lead to deportation and family separation.

Crispin Caday Lozano, Esq. is an active member of the State Bar of California, the American Immigration Lawyers Association and San Francisco Trial Lawyers Association.  He specializes in immigration law and personal injury.  For free consultation email or call ( / 1-877-456-9266)

Toll Free 1-877-4LOZANO for free consultation or Schedule an Appointment