Applying For Adjustment Of Status With Very Little Evidence
The process to adjust your status requires a good amount of evidence included with your I-485 petition. Applying for adjustment of status with very little evidence can be problematic but if you know what the USCIS is looking for, you can be prepared.
The good news is that since your marriage is new (if adjusting from K-1) you will not be required to have a ton of evidence of your marriage.
However, this does not mean that you don’t have to provide any evidence. You still need to include as much documentation of your life together as possible. There are numerous documents that can show your shared residence, co-mingling of finances and life together.
The adjudicators make the ultimate decision to approve your adjustment of status based on the evidence you include with your petition. They have enough experience to be able to tell whether your marriage is genuine or if it was entered into for green card benefits.
What Evidence Do I Need To Include With The I-485?
The type of evidence needed for adjustment of status is similar to what you have already submitted for the K-1 visa, except you are now married.
One of the most important evidence you can provide is financial. The USCIS wants to see that you share a bank account, file taxes together, and pay bills together. This shows proof that you both live as a married couple who trust each other with your money.
If, for example, you entered into this marriage for immigration purposes, you definitely would share a bank account or credit cards with your spouse because it won’t be long term. You have to think from the adjudicators point of view and look for things that seem abnormal.
Include the following to show co-mingling of finances:
- Bank statements
- Joint tax transcripts
- Joint credit cards
- Life insurance policies
- Investment accounts
- Joint mortgage/deed to home
- Joint health insurance
Other types of good evidence that you should include:
- Joint apartment lease
- Joint car ownership
- Joint car insurance
- Joint loans/debt
- Utility bills in both names
- Cell phone family plans
- Family photos together
- Itineraries for trips together
I Don’t Have Enough Evidence For Adjustment Of Status
Evidence is extremely important for the final decision of approval or denial. If you do not have enough evidence and cannot gather it before submitting your adjustment of status, there is a high likelihood of being denied a green card.
Why risk being denied if you can gather this documentation? Even if you do not plan to share a bank account or pay bills together – do it temporarily. Yes, it may seem like you are trying to get around the system but sometimes you have to (especially if you marriage is genuine).
I understand that not all couples want to co-mingle their finances and normally that is fine, but when it comes to immigration, that won’t fly.
- Open a joint bank account
- Add each other to your credit cards
- Put both names on household bills
- Use joint life insurance, medical and auto insurance
Keep all these accounts until you are done with immigration and then you can decide whether you want to separate your finances.
Will I Be Denied A Green Card If I Have No Evidence Of Bona Fide Marriage?
The short answer is: maybe. You will definitely be required to attend an interview with your spouse because your petition will raise red flags.
The immigration officer will already be suspicious of your relationship based on minimal evidence so you have an uphill battle to prove your marriage is bona fide. You are taking a huge risk by not providing any evidence at all.
Some immigrants don’t know they need to provide any more evidence for adjustment of status but usually have something to include with their petition. The best advice I can give you is to always create more evidence of your relationship and marriage. Use the list above as a guide on what the USCIS is looking for.
Is Having A Child Together Enough Evidence?
Having a child together can be a form of evidence of a bona fide marriage. You should definitely include their birth certificate with your I-485 petition.
Unfortunately, this is not enough. Having a child together does not guarantee that you will be approved for a green card and the adjudicator will want to see other types of evidence as well.
On the other hand, not having a child together will not negatively affect your case either. A child does not make a marriage for genuine so you shouldn’t worry if you and your spouse have chosen not to have children.
So, make sure you include as much evidence as you can for the best chances to get approved for a green card. Even if you think you have enough, add more! It never hurts to front-load your applications. Worst case would be that you overwhelm the adjudicator and are given an interview.
Hi! I’m a foreign born Canadian that has immigrated to the United States to marry the love of my life. I successfully navigated the U.S. immigration system all the way to U.S. citizenship. Immigration is a privilege not a right!