Or is all of our holiday photos etc. only required during the interview process?
The best suggestion I could give you is for you to consult with an experienced immigration attorney near you, before filing the I-130. That will help you have the best chance of success, and to avoid problems down the road. Photographs can be, and often are, helpful in I-130 Petitions. A good lawyer will help you to put together the best possible petition.
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For an I-130, one should submit what the form instructions say is required.
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In my practice we don't generally include couples photographs with the I-130 petition however, I do ask my clients to bring a variety of couples photographs to their interviews in case the officer would like to see them.
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I always suggest to submit pictures along with the application. Whie it is not a requirement of the application packet, officers almost get suspicious if not because it is a very common practice to submit pictures. If you do not submit them in the application, it is ok but definitely take some to the interview of numerous events and occassions.
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It is best to hold off on the pictures until your interview date. Depending on where the I-130 is filed, it may take at least several months before an interview is held. At that interview, I would suggest bringing around 20 photographs, 2 of which you will most likely give up.
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