What to Expect at an Immigration Interview
Going through the immigration process can be difficult and anxiety-inducing, particularly for many members of the DuPage County Muslim community. We would like to focus on one aspect of the immigration process that many DuPage County residents have questions about: the immigration interview. Once you have applied for permanent resident status in the U.S. (also known as applying for a green card), you will begin a series of steps that likely will culminate in an interview with U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). We know that an in-person interview can produce fear among many people who are new to this country, but we want to emphasize that this is a standard part of the “adjustment of status” procedure that can result in you becoming a permanent resident of the United States.
What should you expect to happen at this interview?
Understand that USCIS Interviews Are a Normal Part of the Process
When you receive notice that you will need to have an interview with USCIS, you should not worry that something has gone awry with your application. Rather, being called in for an interview simply means that your application for a green card is on schedule and is proceeding as planned. As USCIS explains, the interview will require you to “answer questions under oath or affirmation regarding your application.” In order to remain eligible for permanent residency status, you must attend any requested interview once you receive notice about it.
The following are some key things to know about the interview process before you begin:
- USCIS will provide you with notice about the date, time, and location of your interview;
- You will be required to bring certain documents with you, such as original documentation you submitted with your green card application, your passport, any official travel documents, and your Form I-94; and
- You may have to wait at the location before your interview, but the interview itself typically will last only about 20 to 30 minutes.
What Kinds of Questions Will Be Covered during the Interview?
The interview usually will start with a USCIS officer checking your identification and swearing you in (for purposes of ensuring that your answers are truthful). Then, the USCIS officer will ask some of the following questions (many of which appear in the forms you submitted in your application):
- Where were you born?
- What is your current address?
The officer will ask these questions to ensure that you are in fact that same person who submitted the original application. The USCIS officer usually will ask to see the documents you brought with you, as well. From that point, the types of questions you receive largely will be based on whether your application is connected to your employment or to your family status. If your green card application is an employment-based one, then you should anticipate questions about your current job, your current employer, and your background qualifications for that job. If you are applying for a green card based on your marital status, both you and your spouse will be asked questions about your relationship.
Whether or not you are approved for permanent resident status, you will be notified of the USCIS final decision by writing, and it will come in the mail.
Contact an Immigration Lawyer in DuPage County
At Farooqi & Husain Law Office, we know that specific immigration steps can be complicated to understand, and we want to help you through these processes to the best of our abilities. We are committed to advocating for members of the Muslim community as they seek permanent resident status and deal with a wide variety of immigration law matters. An experienced DuPage County immigration lawyer can discuss your case with you today. Contact us for more information about how we can assist you.