Last updated on October 3rd, 2017
Will My Fiancé Have to Pass a Background Check to Get a Green Card?
Your fiancé will have to pass a background check before obtaining a green card. The background check helps the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) determine whether your fiancé is eligible for permanent residence in the U.S. The USCIS will use the following three background checks to complete your fiancé’s background investigation:
- IBIS name check
- FBI fingerprint check
- FBI name check
The USCIS normally conducts the background checks listed above, but they reserve the right to perform additional checks. While this may sound like a bit much and may take some time, all green card applicants must undergo and pass a background investigation. This is because the USCIS is responsible for increasing national security by making sure immigrants are not applying for a green card in order to cause harm to the U.S. or its citizens.
IBIS Name Check
The Interagency Border Inspection System (IBIS) is a computer-based system that combines information dealing with national security risks and public safety issues from multiple government agencies. The USCIS will search your fiancé’s name in the IBIS system. If information comes up that may affect his or her green card application, the USCIS may investigate further.
FBI Fingerprint Check
The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) fingerprint check will provide the USCIS with information regarding your fiancé’s criminal background within the United States. If your fiancé has a criminal history, information about the charges should be provided with the green card application to avoid delays or denial. A criminal background does not automatically disqualify your fiancé from obtaining a green card, but the determination is left up to the USCIS.
FBI Name Check
The FBI will also complete a name search on your fiancé. During this search, your fiancé’s name will be run through the FBI’s centralized records, which include all investigative, administrative and personnel files maintained by the FBI. The results of the FBI name check are sent to the USCIS.