Immigration Interview Etiquette: Tips from an Immigration Attorney

Many individuals who enter the immigration interview do so unprepared. The results, unfortunately, are less than favorable for those individuals. It is imperative that everyone entering an immigration interview not only bring along an attorney, but also be prepared and follow the proper etiquette. Always ask your immigration attorney etiquette tips for your interview and make sure you start preparing over a week in advance.


Be Honest and Always Tell the Truth

You are not doing yourself or your family any favors by lying to immigration agents. Never be apprehensive about a question. Even though the truth might risk a rejection, being caught in a lie can have devastating consequences. Always consult your immigration lawyer on how to answer questions and conduct a practice interview in your immigration attorney’s office to be fully prepared.


Answer, but Keep it Simple

When immigration agents ask you a question, you need to answer. That being said, there is a difference between a simple answer and a complex one. For example, if the agent asks you what time you woke up that morning, do not give him or her a play-by-play of your day. Instead, give a time and wait for the next question. Your immigration attorney can coach you on how to answer questions and how to keep things simple and to-the-point during your interview.


Dress Code

Though different cultures wear different clothing, the more conservative your clothing, the better for the situation. Immigration attorneys can instruct you on how to dress for your interview. Typically they will recommend a conservative, neutral outfit that does not divulge offensive, inappropriate, or political messages.


Have Respect

Remember that the immigration agent has a job just like you have a goal in mind. Treat the immigration agent with respect. Your immigration attorney will be there to ensure your rights are protected and you are treated fairly. Therefore, rely on your immigration lawyer’s knowledge and focus on answering your questions. Always be patient, and even if you are frustrated, refrain from losing your temper or even raising your voice toward the immigration agent.


Do Not Go Without Your Immigration Attorney

Though you might be tempted to represent yourself at an immigration interview, it is in your best interest to have an immigration attorney by your side instead. Contact your immigration attorney and make sure the interview time fits with his or her schedule. Even though there are do-it-yourself sites, they cannot accomplish everything your immigration attorney can for you or your case. Immigration lawyers not only represent you, but also:


  • Prepare all documents and submit them with due diligence;
  • Make sure issues are handled quickly and appropriately;
  • Prepare and coach you for your immigration interview;
  • Represent you during your interview;
  • Serve as a witness for immigration agent abuse reports;
  • And prevent any misunderstandings that may occur during the interview.


Every day, hundreds go through immigration interviews. While most pass, others fail simply because they do not heed the advice of their immigration attorneys. You can avoid a rejection simply by following your immigration lawyer’s advice as well as following the standard etiquette required for immigration interviews.

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