Engagement Evidence for your Fiancé Visa Application
As an applicant for a fiancé visa, you’ll need to prove that you intend to marry a United States citizen who you’ve met with in person within the last two years. The law requires that you provide evidence of your relationship and plans to get married but doesn’t specify exactly what may qualify as proof, leaving room for a variety of forms of evidence.
Photographs of you and your fiance together, as well as email or other communications between you and your future spouse are very useful.
With your application you should also provide evidence that you intend to get married, which can be in the form of wedding announcements or other proof of wedding arrangements.
Because evidence of your relationship can be provided in a wide variety of forms, it’s best to cast a wide net and provide multiple different types of evidence.
Photos of you and your partner together within the last two years is helpful because it guarantees that you have met each other in person within the time required by law. These photos should show both people’s faces in good lighting to remove any doubt that the couple in the photo are who you say they are. These photos will serve as even more reliable proof if they have been time stamped with the date and time they were taken.
Correspondence between you and your potential spouse is also a valid and important way to prove that you have a satisfactory relationship. Communication happens in so many ways, and most of that evidence will be deemed acceptable too.
Emails and instant message conversations should be gathered and saved, including the dates and times of communication.
Telephone records can also be helpful as long as the phone service is able to provide an itemized bill or receipt showing the phone numbers that calls were made to and received from.
Proof of communication between you and your fiancé isn’t limited to just traditional communication methods. Correspondence via Facebook and other social media sites may also serve as evidence of your relationship. To use Facebook posts or other non-traditional online communication methods, you can take screen shots of specific conversations and interactions to be used as evidence of your relationship.
You should provide a written statement which includes the dates you’ve met in person and a description of other evidence of your relationship. This statement can be written by you or your fiancé regardless of who is applying for a visa. If you’re note sure what to write in your fiancé visa statement, an immigration attorney can help you.
Proof that you have made or are in the process of making wedding plans would be an excellent addition to your application. If you have a wedding date and you are in the process of arranging the ceremony, a wedding announcement and other documents associated with the ceremony would be great additions to your application package. Including a written statement of your intent to marry is also helpful.
Whatever stage of the wedding planning process you find yourself at – whether it’s little more than casual conversation or full-blown reservations and announcements – it’s a good idea to include some kind of evidence with your application.
If you or your future spouse has been married before, then you’ll need to include proof that the previous marriage has been terminated. Such evidence could include a divorce decree, or an annulment or a death certificate.
In deciding how to prove your relationship status there is flexibility that may allow for some ingenuity on the part of the applicant. The State Department will review each visa application individually to determine the validity of the relationship.
If you have traveled with your fiancé, you could include a flight itinerary, hotel receipts, and copies of passports with identical stamps.
If you have shopped or dined together but paid with different cards, providing credit card statements or receipts which show expenses incurred at the same times and places will be helpful.
Phone records, emails, letters, and other proof of correspondence are especially useful, but there are few limits on what kind of proof you may provide with your visa application.
Before applying for your visa, it’s important that you securely save all of the photos and documents you plan to include with your application. It’s a good idea to make extra copies and back up files to an external hard drive or save them to cloud. It’s not unheard of for computer files and memory cards to fail or go missing and this would be terribly unfortunate if evidence of your relationship is only in digital form.
Decisions, Decisions, Decisions
When deciding what to use as evidence of your relationship you don’t need to provide every communication or correspondence you’ve had as a couple – that would be ridiculous. But what is important is to determine what forms of evidence you have access to and choose excerpts from several of these sources.
The State Department will want to see evidence of consistent and ongoing conversation, so choosing emails that show you regularly communicated with each other will be important. If you’ve used several ways to communicate then proof of each of these forms of communication will be helpful in obtaining your visa.
Essentially, any documented proof of communication, interaction, or plans to get married will be helpful as part of an application for a fiancé visa. Before granting the visa, the government will want to ensure that the couple truly has gotten to know each other and honestly intends to get married.
In deciding what to include with your application, simply think of what you have to show that you and your fiancé communicate consistently, spend time together, and plan to get married.