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CatherineA

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About CatherineA

  • Rank
    Platinum Member
  • Member # 197025

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  • Gender
    Female
  • City
    Alexandria
  • State
    Virginia

Immigration Info

  • Immigration Status
    Adjustment of Status (pending)
  • Place benefits filed at
    National Benefits Center
  • Country
    Costa Rica

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  1. Yeah it's only a dozen or so countries that have USCIS field offices (and those are the only ones who can do DCF). So you figure that both people have to be legally residing there (not just visiting), already a small number, and want to immigrate to the US (smaller still) and it's just not as common. Plus, the ones who do it don't need a ton of help from Visajourney and so are probably less likely to end up here
  2. 90% of the federal government works for the executive branch. Someone can write a letter for approval. It's clearly not important in the big picture generally (it's nice to do and important in the warm and fuzzy sense) but it's also not something that should take more than 5 minutes of the President's time, or an hour if he wants to write it himself.
  3. I'm sorry, that's really disappointing (but not surprising), especially because I know (and perhaps you do too) that there ARE oath ceremonies where they're much more interested/invested in the process and meaning of the day. If I were in your shoes, I'd reach out to the field director of the office and consider shooting the Public Engagement folks an email. If you really want to be a bee in their bonnet, sic the Congressman's office on them. I will fully acknowledge that that's definitely overreacting (except for the name-change woman, poor thing!) but sometimes just being a pain in the butt just for the sake of being a pain in the butt is the best you can do AND may make them think twice about being so horrible to people in the future. https://www.uscis.gov/outreach/contact-us Congratulations and WELCOME!!!
  4. She said letter not video and he's been in office for ten full months, today. There is plenty of time to write a letter, or really have a member of staff write the letter and e-sign it-- doesn't even need to cross his desk. There's also plenty of time for a video, in my opinion but videos aren't standard. The letters are.
  5. IF NO Noa2

    It is literally not up to each member, it is USCIS's policy, or at least has been for many years. They, USCIS, even the special-Congressional-service-only phone number people/managers, will not open a case until the applicant is outside the posted processing times. This is why they fudge the dates on the posted processing times. If you applied a long time ago, things may well have been different then. If more recently, what may have happened is that you were outside the normal processing times and they were able to help. Or, you weren't but they took your information anyway, to humor you (this is common) and the application came through on its own shortly after and it just looks like they worked magic for you. They didn't. They do know how to make themselves look good though, especially when most people don't know how it works behind the scenes.
  6. IF NO Noa2

    They won't help you until you're outside the processing time listed on USCIS's website. Or, rather, USCIS won't take the inquiry from your Congressman until you're outside the timeframe on USCIS's website. Not only did I have that job before, so been there done that, but I was an applicant during a time where TSC was averaging 7 months wait time (and CSC was averaging 3 weeks). Nothing anyone could do. Don't waste your time, or if you insist on trying, email/call before going into the office. But they'll tell you the same thing.
  7. No no no! If they are in the process of getting divorced and they go to the AOS interview together pretending to be a happy couple, that is BIG time trouble right there. Like misrepresentation kind of trouble. They're getting divorced before AOS is complete. There simply isn't a path to stay unless that relationship is (legitimately) salvaged. Are 100% of K1s being interviewed now? We didn't, and we went through after San Bernardo (but before Trump... barely).
  8. If you get married in April, he can start the application process as soon as your marriage certificate arrives. You'll be applying for a spouse visa-- a CR1. You'll have to leave before your ESTA stay is up-- wait time is right around a year for that. What sounds like a better option for you is to file for a fiance visa-- a K1. He can start the paperwork NOW and you could have your visa interview as early as mid-April. It would be tight but if you get moving soon, that plane ticket may not be a waste. Even if you don't interview until May or June, that still gets you in the US far quicker than waiting until April to get married and start the process. And, if he's military, it's possible that this whole thing gets expedited for you, depending on his deployment schedule. The issue with arriving on ESTA with the intention to stay is that they'll generally ask why you're here and if you lie, you could wind up in an absolutely huge amount of trouble, immigration-wise (all the way up to and including a lifetime ban from any visa, including a spouse visa) and being "turned around at the airport" isn't anywhere near as nice and easy as it sounds. It involves being held in federal detention until the next flight, which depending on the case could be overnight. Lots of people try and get away with it but one-- remember, they ARE breaking the law and should not be. But for those who get caught, it's just not pretty (or worth it). If you read this woman's experience to get an idea of what we're all talking about. To me, it's quite clear that she intended to migrate and is covering up that fact (and likely lied to the officers), but even if she's telling 100% of the truth, that should serve as a pretty serious warning on how seriously they take it: http://www.news.com.au/travel/travel-updates/incidents/molly-hill-reveals-how-dream-trip-to-hawaii-turned-into-a-nightmare/news-story/b3833259e7ffe3e130dbf73c852f2f82 Again, look into a fiance/ K1 visa. You really may make that flight after all, with the proper visa.
  9. It's not unusual for newlyweds or engaged people to be together. Or for airplanes to be expensive. And we all pay the same visa costs. It's just how it is and everyone here as been through it or is currently going through it. It wasn't (and never is) a great idea to book tickets before securing an immigrant visa (and downright foolish to think you could migrate without one). But you can salvage it by applying for a K1 visa now, like-- fast as you can, and you'd have an outside chance of having a visa in hand by April. Personally, I would look into getting a refund for that ticket or seeing what the change fees are now (or prepare to treat April like a visit). The benefit K1 has over CR1 is that they tend to be a bit faster and-- big benefit for you-- you don't have to be married to apply for one. So seriously, if you get your act together quickly, your fiance could have the first step in the mail by the end of this week. Going for a CR1 visa you'd have to wait until you see each other again, get married, wait for the certificate etc. The drawback of K1 vs CR1 is that you can't work right away. But if you continue with your original plan of migrating on a visit visa (fraudulently and runs the risk of being turned around at the border-- something that can and does happen), you wouldn't be able to work right away either. As for the expense-- the visa itself isn't the large expense, it's the residency application which you'd have to do one way or the other. Sure the fiance visa costs more than migrating on a visit visa but again plan #2 is fraud and is risky and is never advised here.
  10. New Spinoff show- Before 90 Day Fiancee

    I should be clear, episode 2 is on TLC Go as a preview or whatever. It'll air next week but you can see it now.
  11. New Spinoff show- Before 90 Day Fiancee

    You can see episode 2 of the new 90 Day couples. Y'all, this teenager needs a swift kick to the teeth. As she's waiting for her Spanish fiance to come out of his interview, she explains to her mother that "7 out of 10 people who do this are frauds" (in response to mom's question about how likely he is to get the visa). This, the girl who was approached on Instagram by a much older foreign guy when she was underage and who has known him less than a year (their planned wedding is/was before their 1 year mark) and who has spent only 2 weeks in his presence. And yet her only concern is the 70% of OTHER couples who will make their visa harder. So many words that would get blacked out here. So many.
  12. Not a problem-- it seems like this way was faster (again with them all being a bit different). The Senator had a privacy release on their site but the Congressman didn't? Yeah, that could save a day or so. Either way, I am confident that you'll get this resolved, this is a known issue and many before you (and me!) have gotten it straightened out. Best of luck!
  13. Yes, they should be just as good. I generally advise to go to your member of Congress only because they represent fewer people (they represent a district of around 400,000 people, Senators represent an entire state)-- but Senators have more people on staff, at least in DC (I am not sure about their district offices). But really, they all have the same type of people on staff with the same authority and same access so it's not a big deal. Like anything, one office could be busier than another, the person with immigration issues in their portfolio may be on vacation, or be new, or never seen this issue before, but at the end of the day, they'll all get the job done (My first job out of college was working at my Congressman's local office doing exactly this kind of stuff!)
  14. Your congressperson should be able to help you on this-- mine did. The trick is to make sure that they completely understand the issue. They basically need to explain USCIS's own rules to them regarding K1 medicals (it's tricky because I am pretty sure that this is the only group of people to go through AOS who already had medicals abroad). So pointing them to the instructions for the I-693 and explain how you meet every bullet point is a good way to go. Best of luck!
  15. Your options basically are: You do not marry. She goes home, unmarried, you apply for fiance visa (K1). She can visit during the visa processing. When she moves, you'll need to marry and adjust status, she won't be able to leave the US or work while this is processing. You marry. She goes home, already married, you apply for spouse visa (CR1). She can visit during the visa processing. When she moves, she'll have green card in hand and can leave the US and work on Day 1. You marry. She stays, you apply for adjustment of status (AOS). She cannot leave the US or work while this is processing. There's no other path. You'll either need to remain in the US until her work/travel authorization comes through (4 months on average now I believe), or go through the CR1 visa process (or K1 visa process which does not sound like a path you want to take). As an aside-- I would very seriously consider slowing down. If she has the ability to fly back and forth (which it sounds like she does, as her ability to leave/come back to the US during this process is a chief concern of yours), and you can and want to visit her in Japan (also sounds like you do), giving this a bit more time will only improve things.
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