Written by Avvo Staff

Marriage-based green card checklist

Documents and evidence to include in your visa application

In order to receive a marriage-based green card, you'll need to include a series of documents along with your application forms.

Tips for attaching documents:

  • Unless otherwise noted, do not send original documents. After you file, you will not be able to get these documents back from USCIS.
  • All documents must be submitted in English or officially translated into English.
  • Use paperclips to attach documents. Do not use staples.
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Proof of petitioner’s status

☐ If permanent resident—copy of permanent residency card

☐ If American citizen through naturalization—copy of certification of naturalization

☐ If American citizen by birth—certified copy of full birth certificate OR all pages of US passport

Proof of beneficiary’s status

☐ Copy of birth certificate

☐ Copy of all passport pages

☐ Copy of I-94

Additional documents

☐ Check made out to the Department for Homeland Security for the application fee

☐ Certified copy of marriage certificate

☐ 6 original passport-style photos of the beneficiary, taken within 30 days of filing date, with name printed on the back of each photo

☐ 2 original passport-style photos of the petitioner

☐ Copies of 3 most recent tax returns with W-2s/paystubs OR official IRS transcripts

☐ Employment verification letter from the petitioner’s employer

☐ If previously married—certified copy of divorce documents or spouse’s death certificate

Medical examination

Before you can submit your application, you need to visit a civil surgeon to verify that you are healthy. The examination results are usually valid for 12 months, so you will want to schedule the exam as close as possible to the date you plan to file the application.

☐ Medical exam

☐ Immunization history (bring to medical exam)


Include as much evidence as possible to prove that your marriage is legitimate. You do not need to include every item on the list, but more information will strengthen your application.

☐ The spouse’s driver’s licenses with matching addresses

☐ Most recent bank statement with both spouse’s names

☐ Property registered in the spouse’s names

☐ Lease or mortgage with both spouse’s signatures

☐ Utility bills with both spouse’s names and matching address

☐ Insurance policies with both spouse’s names

☐ Receipts for expensive items purchased together

☐ Affidavits from friends, family, colleagues that can confirm that you are married

☐ Postmarked​ envelopes and letters from family regarding knowledge of marriage

☐ Wedding pictures or family photos—2 copies with the date, occasion, and location on the back of each photo

☐ Certified copies of any children’s birth certificates

☐ Cards or letters to or from the petitioner and beneficiary

☐ Email exchange between the couple

☐ Phone records between couple

Remember that if you get stuck, an immigration lawyer can answer your questions, review your application, or help you through the entire application process.

Or, for more information, see our comprehensive guide on how to apply for family-based green card.

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