Permanent Residency via Marriage For Couple With Large Age Difference

Permanent Residency via Marriage For Couple With Large Age Difference

  • Applicant: Ms. Song*
  • Nationality: Malaysian
  • Applying For: Permanent Residency via Marriage
  • Time: 2 months
  • Challenges:
    • Large age difference between partners
    • Interracial couple
    • Client had a DUI on her record
    • Client overstayed on her previous H-1B visa
    • No children together



    When you are applying for permanent residency through marriage, everyone knows that the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) case officer working your case is going to be on the lookout for fraud. Unfortunately, people try to gain the U.S. immigration system and green cards through illegitimate marriages which is one of the most common ways people think to attempt it. But what are you to do if you are like our former client, Ms. Song, and you think that your application and the details of it look like fraud even if they aren’t? A good, well-practiced immigration law office can help you.

    Ms. Song had several red flags pop up when we first sat down to look over her case. First, there was a bit of an age difference between her and her husband, a little more than seven years. That may not seem like much, but it’s enough to trip the USCIS’s radar. She, an Asian woman, was married to a Hispanic man. This case occurred many years ago, and while people then should not have been looked at twice for having an interracial marriage, again this is another factor that USCIS looks at. Also, Ms. Song had no children with her husband and wasn’t expecting to have any. There was also the issue that she had a DUI on her record but she also had overstayed on an employment visa in the past. All of these smaller issues combine to give a case officer a sense of unease about a case. It’s cases like these that you hear the worst stories about, the hours’ long interview in separate rooms, the long wait times, the Requests for Evidence (RFE), all of it. However, due to our experience working difficult cases, we were confident that we could help Ms. Song achieve her goal, and she trusted we would do everything in our power to help her.



    We started with a background check on Ms. Song. She was upfront with us about all of her legal issues, including the DUI and the visa overstay, but we had to be sure she hadn’t forgotten anything that would come up in the visa process. USCIS will conduct their own background checks, and if they find something we are not prepared for, it could be problematic for our client’s case. Nothing new came up, and we were able to move forward with our tried-and-true strategy for cases like these.

    We began by strategizing with our client and her spouse on what documentation they already had to prove their marriage was legitimate. Case officers Songt to see commingled lives, which is fairly easy to prove. Something as simple as pieces of mail for each spouse being delivered to the same house, copies of driver’s licenses with the same address can show co-mingled living arrangements. Co-mingled financials is also a major key. Joint bank accounts, insurance accounts, tax information can all show that a client is truly living their life with their spouse, they aren’t just married for the sake of a green card. We know how to package these documents to tell a story to the case officer assigned to our client’s cases, how to argue for our clients using the evidence that they already have, and we did that for Ms. Song.

    We also make sure our clients are completely prepared for the interview process. We strategize with our clients on what the case officer is likely to ask, where their case looks weakest and what will likely be big issues for the case officer. If we can prepare our clients to answer the hardest questions, answering becomes much easier on the day of the interview and the case officer can rest assured that our clients have represented themselves well and truly to the U.S. government. To do this, we gave them customized questionnaires about likely questions so they could prepare their answers ahead of time and we also gave them mock interviews to run them through the process so nothing will be new to them on the day of their interview with USCIS. We also provide translation services for the clients that require it, though Ms. Song and her husband did not need such services this time.

    The last thing we needed to do was cover our bases regarding Ms. Song’s legal issues. She had a DUI arrest and had overstayed on her previous visa. Neither of these looks good to a case officer, but with proper explanation and argumentation, neither are case breaking either. We explained that Ms. Song had already done all the court-mandated activities and classes that stemmed from the DUI case, and we also covered her visa overstay on a one-page explainer letter included with the rest of their documentation and argumentation.



    We sent Ms. Song and her husband to do their interview, and they reported back success. Their interview was fast and easy, the case officer was pleased with the thoroughness of their documentation, and Ms. Song was given same-day approval. Ms. Song and her husband were beyond grateful that Tsang & Associates helped them get their happily ever after.

Original Content

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