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What To Expect at a Stokes Interview

couple holding hands during interview

When you or your spouse is applying for a marriage green card, you must go through an interview process in which you essentially have to prove the validity of your marriage. In other words, you must prove to U.S. immigration authorities that the sole purpose of your marriage wasn’t just for one person to obtain a green card.

You and your spouse may be well aware that you love each other and did not enter the marriage for the sole purpose of obtaining a green card. However, if the immigration officer/interviewer suspects that this is not the case, you may have to attend a second interview to prove that your marriage is not a sham.

The Stokes Interview Process

Also called a marriage fraud interview, a Stokes interview is conducted when an immigration officer questions the validity of a couple’s marriage when one spouse is attempting to obtain a marriage green card. The applicants will receive a written notice of this required interview, a list of their rights, and an appointment letter with a list of documents to submit, including:​

  • Photo identification of the citizen spouse Infographic: Documents required for the Stokes Interview. Photo identification of the citizen spouse, proof of the petitioner’s citizenship, immigrant spouse’s passport, marriage certificate, employment letters and the last two pay stubs, bank account information, receipts of recently paid bills, tax returns, insurance policies, photo albums.

  • Proof of the petitioner's citizenship

  • Immigrant spouse's passport

  • Marriage certificate

  • Employment letters and the last two pay stubs

  • Bank account information

  • Receipts of recently paid bills

  • Tax returns

  • Insurance policies

  • Photo albums

At the interview itself, the immigration officer will ask you and your spouse questions both separately and together. They will explain why the first interview did not go well before starting the interviews, which could take several hours.

In general, the interviewer will be looking for your questions to decently fit together and for both spouses to know information about the other. They may ask very invasive questions, but it’s important that both parties answer all questions openly and honestly.

After the interview is completed, the officer will bring both spouses in together and explain if there were any discrepancies between their answers. The couple will have the opportunity to convince the officer that their relationship is genuine. If the officer does believe that the marriage is valid, they will approve green card status.

Advocating on Behalf of You and Your Family

At Maney Gordon Zeller, our legal team is here to help you avoid a marriage fraud interview altogether and overcome it when you are put through the process. Should you choose to work with our team, you will have confidence knowing that you have a fearless advocate on your side guiding you in the right direction so you and your family can pursue your American Dream.

Contact our full-service immigration firm at (800) 708-4399 to get started with a free case review. You can also fill out our online contact form and we will get back to you as soon as possible.


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