Experience, Accessibility And Excellence For Over 25 Years

NOID from USCIS Not Always Bad! | No Marriage Interview?

by | Jul 6, 2023 | Family Immigration, Marriage |

Next to receiving a Denial Notice, a Notice of Intent to Deny (“NOID”) can be one of the most frightening things an aspiring immigrant can receive in the mail.  At least that is how it used to be.  In 2023, getting a NOID may not be such a bad thing, especially if you are getting one in the context of a marriage-based adjustment of status case.  This is not to minimize the seriousness of getting a NOID.  The consequences of failing to respond to one can have a devastating impact on one’s case, resulting in possible denial.  However, it is extremely important these days to not freak out and actually look at the NOID and see what is actually being requested.

Under current policies, a lot of I-130 marriage interviews are being waived.  For decades, the government has always summoned married people to appear for an interview to determine the validity of the marital relationship.  Starting last year, however, USCIS started to issue Requests for Evidence and sometimes Notices of Intent to Deny for marriage-based cases.  A lot of these notices requested the applicant to provide evidence of the bona-fide nature of the marriage, such as joint documents and other proof of the marital relationship.  In many cases, we have seen that if enough documentation was furnished, USCIS actually ended up approving the marriage cases without scheduling the couple to come in for an interview!  This is a unprecedented practice that will likely increase efficiency for USCIS by clearing the backlog, but more importantly, save genuine couples the trouble and unwanted anxiety of having to undergo questioning.  Even if a couple is real and has nothing to hide, interviews are very unpredictable, and lot of things can go awry from unintentionally irritating an officer or failing to bring something the officer was requesting.  Sometimes, being put on the spot can cause one to forget things that one would normally not.  In contrast, responding to a NOID allows the applicant time to calmly and rationally assemble a proper response.

That being said, it is critical to read the NOID thoroughly.  Sometimes, it is not a matter of whether USCIS will waive an interview.  Sometimes, the government is looking to deny a case– and will do—unless sufficient evidence is furnished to rebut what is alleged.  This is where an attorney can play an important role.  An experienced immigration lawyer can properly assess and evaluate the NOID, taking into the account what type of benefit is being sought; the stage where the case is at; what is being alleged; and what is being requested.

In this new era of immigration practice, one does not want to underestimate or overestimate a NOID.  If you are not sure of what is being asked or how your response can affect your case, it would be worth considering consulting with an immigration attorney to help you formulate an effective strategy in responding.