Employment-Based Green Card Interview Questions

By Samir Ismayilov - Updated February 12, 2018

Employment-based green card interviews are something of a formality. Applicant interviews are often waived. When they are required, questions are likely to touch on general eligibility, verification, clarification or updating information.


Interview questions typically focus on employment issues, criminal convictions and documentation that was submitted with the application. They're usually limited to information already referenced in the application.

The Stage of the Application Process

The interview is a part of the Adjustment of Status stage for applicants who are already in the U.S. at the time of application. It's part of Consular Processing for applicants who are applying from abroad. Interviews are more likely to be waived during the Adjustment of Status, but the nature of the employment-based green card interview and the type of questions likely to be asked don't vary between the two processes.

Change of Employer

One of the more commonly cited questions addresses the circumstances and reason for changing employers during the application process. Employers play a major role by initiating the application and completing two out of its three stages. The officer might become suspicious that the applicant used the employer as a way to obtain a green card and ask questions to try to determine whether the employment relationship was genuine.

Criminal Record

Form I-485, the Application to Register Permanence Residence or Adjust Status, requires the disclosure of criminal records. Having a record of one or more criminal convictions does not automatically disqualify an applicant but it's taken into consideration and it can affect the chance of approval. It will depend on the gravity and number of crimes involved. The officer might use the interview to determine whether the applicant's criminal history depicts his moral character and is representative of his present and future conduct.

Documentation and Information

Form I-485 stipulates that only copies or documents should be submitted with the application, so the officer might schedule the interview so he can inspect the originals and ensure their validity. The interview might be used as an alternative to a request for additional evidence, such as tax returns and W-2s. The applicant would bring the documents rather than mail them.

Clarification and Verification

In most cases, the scope of the interview will not extend beyond the information contained in the application. The officer will usually ask questions that have already answered on Form I-485 to see if the applicant is consistent in his responses. Other questions might address lack of clarity or discrepancies within the application or supporting documents.

About the Author

Samir Ismayilov started writing professionally in 2010. He writes primarily for eHow, focusing on the subjects of law, business and travel. He holds a Bachelor of Arts in philosophy from Berea College and a Juris Doctor with a concentration in corporate law from Cardozo Law School.

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