When you married a U.S. citizen and relocated to Kentucky from your country of origin, you likely assumed you might encounter various challenges as you adapted to a new culture, new home, new language and more. You were hopeful that your spouse, extended family members and friends would provide a strong support system to help you overcome any obstacles that might arise. You knew it wouldn’t be easy but you were sure it was worth it because you had met the love of your life and were happy.
If the U.S. government thinks your marriage is not legitimate and you are using marriage to a U.S. citizen to obtain permanent legal residence status, you may wind up facing your biggest challenge of all: A Stokes interview. Even if those who know you believe that your marriage is a bona fide union, you will still have to convince immigration officials of the same or face possible deportation. Knowing where to seek support before attending your interview may be key to staying in the United States.
Things to know about the Stokes process
The last thing you need is to worry about possible removal when you are trying to build a new life here. Such situations can be quite stressful even when you know you have done nothing wrong. The following list includes other important issues that may be useful to you as you do your best to comply with immigration regulations:
- Something in your documents or something you or your spouse said may have prompted your Stokes interview.
- If you already had a green card interview, officials may not have been convinced of the validity of your marital relationship, thus ordering a Stokes interview for further investigation.
- If it appears you and your spouse have trouble communicating in a common language, that fact may be one of the reasons officials are calling your marriage into question.
- Other questionable issues would include differences in religious beliefs, marriage secrecy where your friends and family are unaware that you got married or vast differences in your ages.
- Another factor that would prompt a Stokes interview is if you got married after already receiving a removal notice.
A Stokes interview may occur a short time after your wedding day or even months or years later. Officials will pay attention to intimate details of your relationship with your spouse, such as if you have been married a few years and do not have children together. Answering personal questions can be stressful and make you feel uncomfortable but it may be a necessity if you hope to avoid removal.