What is a Sham Marriage and what is Immigration Marriage Fraud? -
Sham Marriage

What is a Sham Marriage and what is Immigration Marriage Fraud?

Here is What should you know before you file your K-1 Fiancé Visa in order to avoid Immigration Marriage Fraud or a Sham Marriage.

A sham marriage is a marriage entered in by two people in order to "get around" the complicated United States Immigration laws.

In other words, these two people would not consider a marriage to each other - except for the benefit - that one person in the arraignment receives from marrying a United States Citizen or a Legal Permeant Resident.

The main benefit that a person seeks to receive in this case is the chance to receive a Green Card.

It is illegal for anyone to get married "solely" for the purpose of receiving or helping another person to gain permeant residence in the United States.

In some cases there are stiff fines and possible jail time that can be imposed on people that have entered into a sham or fake marriage for immigration purposes. The United States Government can pursue you with the full force of law enforcement if you are convicted of this type of crime.

What are the odds that you might get caught if you are knowingly attempting to enter into a sham marriage for immigration purposes?

If you listen to Officers at the USCIS, marriage fraud or "suspicious" marriage activity is extremely high. It is a fundamental and core believe that exists within the USCIS. The USCIS uses that believe, to make the detection of marriage fraud, a vey high priority for the agency.

With this believe the USCIS Officers and the agency have developed tools and processes that are pretty good at catching sham marriages in some cases. These tools are used to test the validity of a real marriage in other cases.

Your petitions and supporting documents should be prepared with the understanding that the agency may test the validity of your marriage. 

​What are USCIS Officers looking for when they review a K-1 Fiancé Visa for possible immigration marriage fraud?**

Do not expect the government to spy on you and follow you around 24 hours of the day, seven days a week. This is not done in normal circumstances.

But if there is reason to believe that you are engaged in a Sham Marriage they can:

  • check
    Visit your home
  • check
    talk to your friends and family members
  • check
    interview your employer
  • check
    search your social media accounts
  • check
    conduct a very lengthy investigation

But before all of that the USCIS will require you to submit supporting documents that gives them an indication of the type of relationship you have with your significant other. These documents are use to determine whether or not your relationship is "typical" of a married or soon to be married couple.

There are various factors that are reviewed but the main point is that the closer your relationship is in real life - the government expects your supporting documents to demonstrate that you have entered into a legitimate relationship or marriage.