I’ve mentioned a few times that I have an up and coming AOS interview which will determine whether I will be given a green card and whether my status will be adjusted to a US resident as opposed to an alien. Logically, since we are a legitimate couple, there isn’t too much which can go wrong and there isn’t much reason to worry. The whole process is just to make sure couples aren’t committing visa fraud.
Why am I so nervous about it? Mostly because it’s tomorrow! It really crept up on us! We had a preparation session with our lawyer last week. She’s absolutely lovely, very kind and relaxed, but of course she asked us a lot of questions because that’s what we can expect tomorrow. You’ll never guess what happened! She was firing questions at my husband, J, and he froze up! He not only forgot my birthday and my parent’s names, he couldn’t even remember his own name! Here’s hoping that doesn’t happen tomorrow. Not to mention when we were asked for the colours of our toothbrushes it transpired that we’ve accidentally been using the same one for the last few months. Eurgh!
There is a lot of junk you need to drag to your interview besides yourself and your spouse. Just to calm myself down, here’s my handy dandy online checklist of items:
1) Your and your spouse’s passports and photocopies. Now I finally have my passport, it’s not too much of a problem. At least if J forgets his own name again, he’ll be able to check.
2) Your and your spouse’s birth certificates and copies. Also not an issue. After floating around so long I’m surprised they are still in one piece.
3) US citizen’s driving licence and copy. J has the funniest photo on his. He kind of looks like a stoned Eton student with a background in homicide.
4) Invitation to interview letter. I lost mine yesterday and panicked. Then, once I’d checked the envelope for the third time, it miraculously materialised again. Little bastard.
5) All those other letters they send you, like the biometrics thing, the receipt of all the forms notices etc. Everything ever sent to you by the guys taking care of your case, basically.
6) Marriage certificate and copy.
7) Proof of legitimate marriage. This can be joint loans, joint mortgage or lease, joint utilities, joint bank statement, anything of that ilk. Since the lease and all of the utilities, the car loan etc. are all in J’s name, all we have is our joint bank account. Hope that’s enough… it’s not like I’d be sharing finances with just anyone. Not that we have too much to speak of…
8) Correspondence and photos: this is to show a picture of your relationship I guess. I don’t think they want to see a trilogy’s worth of skype and facebook messages, but we did put together a rather cute photo album and we have wedding photos, cards and a guestbook. We’re not big photographers so our relationship boils down to about 50 photos, and J is pulling faces in at least half of them…
9) All those documents you’ve accrued along the road to get to this point. For me, that is my I-94 visa waiver. Since I never received an Employment Authorisation Document (EAD) or a travel document, I’m fairly light on actual immigration documents. For others this might include past visas and employment cards.
10) Any documents you used to get into the country. For me that’s the I-94 again and my old passport.
That’s it for us since we’ve already given the rest to the lawyers and they’d better already have submitted it. For others who are interested, further things you’ll need include:
11) I-864 form (Affadavit of Support) and supporting documents (tax returns, W2s, pay slips etc.)
12) I-693 form (Medical exam form; I had this done and dusted months ago, along with four very unwelcome injections and a bill for $300)
13) Any birth certificates for children. Luckily we don’t have any of these.
14) Any divorce or death certificates for previous spouses. I just did a Ted and hid my first four husbands in a closet in the apartment*
15) Anything to do with getting arrested – arrest reports, court orders etc. As J says, don’t break the law if you’re not fast enough to run away.
16) Translations of any foreign language documents. Luckily this time around I’m moving to an English-speaking country, so I get to skip this part. Yay!
Phew! I’ve been checking and rechecking everything as I wrote and everything is packed and ready, including the photograph of J dressed as Frodo, the one of him in a Sherlock Holmes hat and the one of me with two eggplant-horns sticking out of my head. Those are the most important things, of course.
Man, I’m nervous. We’ve been through the interview questions a few times (the lawyer gave us a list of over 200 they could ask) and we can look forward to answering such questions as:
- What side of the bed do you sleep on? (J and I both answered left, since I was thinking from a standing position and he from a lying down one)
- What did you have for dinner last night? (J works evenings so we don’t have dinner together. Unfortunately we had crappy frozen pizza for lunch. Why today of all days when usually we make delicious homemade fare?)
- What colour are your bedsheets? (Green, blue, red or white would all be correct answers, because it’s been so cold recently we’ve had to pile on the blankets!)
- What are the names of your parents? (funny story – both our dads are known by several names so it’s more complicated than it sounds. Ditto siblings – I have five and J has seven if we include halves and steps)
- What is in your fridge? (umm… five different types of barbecue sauce, chipotle chillis and about ten sticks of butter)
- When did you last have sex? (No. comment.)
Those are just a few of the things that might be thrown at us tomorrow. Can’t wait to write about how it all goes down. Wish me luck!
*Buffy reference, I’m not really a serial killing psychopath, honest.