US Immigration Q re: Change of address just before adjustment interview.

Hey, it finally arrived!!! A full 26 months after my wife first filed her I-485, etc. (Request for adjustment of status to permanent resident of the U.S. based on marriage to a U.S. citizen), the Chicago Field Office of the INS (or BCIS or whatever they’re calling themselves these days) has actually given us a date for our adjustment interview. My wife’s Green Card is finally almost in sight. Hallelujah!!

Oops, one minor detail: The notice for the interview was sent to our old address and forwarded to us by the Post Office. We sent in the correct change-of-address form to the correct INS PO Box a full two months ago, certifed mail, return receipt. We have the receipt. And yet the notice, dated Oct 9th, was sent to the old address.

Obviously, we’re going down to 10 W. Jackson tomorrow and spend the day hoping that someone will deign to deal with this problem. But a few questions arise which I don’t really trust them to answer correctly.

First, if the address change is not entered before we go in to the interview, are we in trouble with the interviewer because our current residence doesn’t match what he sees in the file?

Second, if we get the address change successfully registered with an Information [sic] Officer and in the computer system at 10 W. Jackson, will that change be reflected in the file of the interviewer around the corner at 230 S. Dearborn by Nov. 13th? (For those of you not familiar with the INS/BCIS,/etc., this IS a serious question. Really.)

Third, if the interviewer has the old address in his file and approves the adjustment, will the Green Card thus be sent to the old address and then returned to them because we’re no longer there and it’s not supposed to be forwarded?

And, lastly, on a tangent, does anyone know approximately what percentage of adjustment applications based on marriage to a U.S. citizen are approved? 98%? Or 60%? Or less?

Thanks for any insight anyone is able to give on this situation.

First of all, good luck! It’s going to be fine. Really.

Second, my most recent info is that the BCIS is waaaaaay more than 2 months behind with entering address changes. At the Service Centers (which I deal with more often, since we do employment-based cases mostly), they frequently end up in general correspondence, which is pretty much the last priority to be addressed.

If I were you, I would be upfront about it at your interview. Given how long they take to process address changes, not to mention green cards, this happens all the time. The interviewer should be able to make the changes then and there, so that the green card goes to the correct address. It couldn’t hurt to bring other documentation of the move, such as lease/mortgage papers, bills sent to the new address, etc.

Approval rate? I dunno, and I don’t know whether those stats are even published. If your case is clean, i.e. you look like you actually know each other and have submitted decent supporting documentation (wedding photos, joint lease/mortgage, etc.), it will probably be fine. I’d bet the percentage is closer to 98% than to 60%. The only cases I’ve ever seen denied were very obvious frauds, even to my then-untrained eye; generally things like 60-year age differences or one spouse not knowing how many children the other spouse has are red flags. So don’t stress (yeah, I know, easier said than done), and you should be fine!

Eva Luna, Immigration Paralegal, Chicago

Thank you, Eva Luna for your very quick response. I was hoping you might be around this evening. :slight_smile:

We had been told by a pro bono consultant that the interviewer did not want to hear about address changes and we should have it all straight before we went into the interview…but we are also aware that this consultant deals mostly with Latino cases based on circumstances other than marriage to a U.S citizen.

We’re clean, of course, and are hopeful in spite of a handful of shortcomings in the case: There IS a 19-year age difference between us. As hermits separately before we were married and now hermits together, we don’t have too many group pictures with family and friends; we do have a few. We don’t have joint credit cards, as my credit record is poor due to a prolonged illness a few years ago, but we do have, of course, joint checking, joint savings, etc.

We’re stressed, as you detected…but hopeful. :slight_smile:

Again, thanks for your help.

Hey, if you’re still around, bring whatever else you can think of; are you listed as beneficiaries on each others’ insurance? Any joint purchases (furniture or something? A car?)? Mail addressed to both of you? Any joint memberships, to the Art Institute or something?

We tend to go for overkill in my office. I don’t think a 20-year age difference will be a huge headache, as long as the interviewer is convinced you actually are a couple, but believe me, I’ve seen some pretty unlikely couples!