“Is it easier for your partner to be home or abroad, to get approved? Or is it hard if they are aboard?” You know, what I can tell you from personal experience is that, I went to the … I attended the interview with my wife. And to me, based on all the interviews that I saw and listened too. It seemed like they were a lot easier with the questions with my spouse because, I was standing there. When, I observed some others it looked like the girls were … The applicants were a little stressed out. Maybe the questions were a little tougher. But, when I was there standing next to my wife, it seemed like they were just, lobbying her softball questions, rather easy questions.
So, is it required to attend the interview? It’s only required for the Alien Beneficiary, not the petition or the US Citizen. Is it recommended? Yes, in most cases. It shows that you have a bona fide, legitimate relationship and it shows that you’re there for support. I think it looks good but, is it required? No, it’s not.
Yeah. What I would add to that is, if there’s any way possible for you to attend the … You being the sponsor, the US citizen. If there’s any way possible for you to attend the interview, you should do it. I mean, this is probably, one of the more important things you’ll do in your life. Almost certainly, the most important thing you’re doing right now in your life. And of course, it is expensive. I’ve been through it too. It’s very expensive, plane tickets and all of this stuff going on. So, I get why people don’t go and perhaps, time off from work and all of these things. So, I certainly get why sometimes, a person just can’t go or would rather not go, to attend the interview with their fiancee or spouse.
But, you’ve gotta put yourself in the place of the interviewing officer, the counselor officer. At this point, they’ve already got the paperwork. They’ve already done the background checks. They’ve checked all of that. His only job, the only purpose of the interview, is for this human being to try and make a determination in their judgment, if they think this is a legitimate relationship. That’s all it’s about. It’s not to verify your identity, they can do that with a background check, right? And, you’ll have prescreening before you go in to talk to the counselor officer. They’ll verify your paperwork. The counselor has one job. To look at you, ask you some questions and decides he thinks this legitimate relationship or are you trying to fraudulently obtain a Green Card. That’s his only job.
And so of course, if you’re there with your spouse and you’re the loving couple and your spouse or fiancee, has spent the time and money to travel to Ethiopia or wherever your interview is. Of course, that puts you in a better light and makes the counselor’s job, officer’s job, a little easier. He can look at the body language between you, just the fact that you made the commitment to travel there. So absolutely, if there’s any way possible to attend the interview, you should.
Now, let me give you one caveat. There are a few embassies that do not allow the sponsor, so you need to make sure you’re allowed. You don’t want to travel all the way to Sudan or wherever your going- and then get there and they say. “Oh no, we don’t allow spouses in here.” And now, you’ve spent all the time and money. And the other caveat to know is, even in the countries that normally, do allow you in the interview. For instance, Philippines allows as a general rule, they allow the sponsor in there. They still have the right to exclude you.
So maybe, they want to talk to your fiancee separately because, they have suspicions. Maybe there’s some demonstrations or unrest around the embassy and they’re trying to limit the traffic, the number of people in and out. So, they say. “Only the principal applicant.” So, you could travel there, not get in. Now, that’s rare. If they have a standing policy, they do allow you in the interview, almost certainly will be able to get in. So, I wouldn’t make the decision based on the slight chance you might not.
But, you definitely want to check your embassy because, some embassies around the world, for whatever reason, do not allow the sponsor to attend the interview and you’d hate to waste your time for that.