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Lessons Learned - Cambodia K1/K2 process prior to interview

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We are a couple of weeks away from our interview date at this time. Here's some things we learned thus far in the final steps of the process.

#1) If after emailing your ds160 conf page to the embassy, you do not get a reply back within a day or two telling you that an interview date has been scheduled, send the conf page again. We sent it, then wasted a month waiting for an email, u.s. mail, or the date to show up on the somewhat randomly updated interview list. It never showed up, so in frustration, I sent it again & received an email back saying we now had a date. They won't tell you the actual date in the email reply, but you can guess the approximate date by looking at the last date listed on the current list and then adding a few days.

#2) the u.s. embassy in Phnom Penh requires all k2 applicants to have their own passports regardless of age. My fiancee's daughter was listed on the mother's passport. Luckily, we were able to get a new separate passport for my fiancee's daughter to be ready in about 36 hours for $250. The good news in this unexpected cost item is that the new passports are good for 10 years now. I think the non-rush price is around $120. Also be aware that the Phnom Penh passport office has moved since last year. It's far away from the city center now.

#3) plan on several days to get the medical done, at least if you are using IOM. They told us differently on the phone, and when we got there, we had to go back 3 days in a row, but that was better than being stuck in PP for 6 days like they originally told us when we arrived. Total cost was $235 for mother & 8 yr old, and not having a separate K2 passport already done is causing a delay in paperwork for 10 days.

Also, be aware that we we called by the embassy about a month before our scheduled appointment date, asking if we had our medical done yet. If we had it done, they would have moved the interview date 3 weeks earlier. So it might be beneficial to get it done as early as possible.

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Thank you so much, K+P for the information. I just got my NOA2 and waiting for NVC to process. Based on your experience, how long do you think till I can start filling out the DS160 form? I can't fill it out and submit it till the embassy has my case right?

When did you fill out the DS-160? Did you get a letter from the embassy? Do I expect the letter from the embassy to be sent to me in Austin, Texas or my fiance in PP?

Is DS-160 confirmation page the only thing you send to PP embassy to schedule the interview appointment? Some people on this forum says I have to send in I-134 and supporting docs as well, what you think? I looked at the form 169 online, seems like they updated that page in December of last year, and I-134 is on the list of documents we need to bring in for the interview. So I am a bit confused. Please help.

Thank you very much.

Sincerely,

Chhay

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Yes, you need to wait until the embassy has your case in hand. You might be able to estimate when they have it by calling the NVC to get the status and looking at the dhl records of what was shipped by reference number & when from the NVC to phnom penh. Search the forum for how to do this. You can wait for the physical letter the embassy will send to the u.s. postal address, but that will take a few weeks. The case number is what you need (PHP2015xxxxxx) to start the ds160 process, and that is available from either the NVC by phone or in the letter from the embassy.

If after emailing the ds160 you don't get an email back within a couple of days saying you have an appointment, send the ds160 again. The email will state an appointment has been scheduled, but won't tell you when. By policy, they won't tell you, you have to wait for the next version of the online appointment list to be published, and you can then get the actual day using the PHP number.

I think the 134 form is only needed at the interview step - I submitted mine unsigned with the 129 paperwork and signed it at the interview. Made no difference submiting it early.

We are now scheduled for our 2nd interview on june 2. (1st interview was on 21 May). They are very careful with k2 applications - my fiancee was never married, so we have to get permission of the father, and somehow establish paternity (they asked for photos of k2 as an infant with family - but we only have photos of her alone when she was small - so we may be asked to do an dna test instead). So many hoops to jump through....

Sounds like your fiancee is from PP? That maybe helpful if your case drags on like ours is doing now...

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Yes, my fiance is in PP. How about you? Thank you very much for the info. and your help. I really appreciate it. Yes, it seems like K2 is a bit more hoops to jump through because of kids. They want to make sure that we don't just drag someone's kid to the interview without parents' permission and bring them to the U.S. there are a lot of cases of human trafficking. They are just cautious. I hope your 2nd interview go well. Keep us posted. We are all rooting for you!!!

I will call NVC and check next week to make sure they receive the case. I can't wait find out when the interview is, so I can book my flight. I saw that sometimes the embassy changed the interview date, i hope they don't change too many times, worst comes to worst, i will pay the airline to change my plane tickets.

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We were not able to find many pictures of the K2 applicant when young with family, therefore the embassy suggested we get a DNA test to prove the daughter is the child of the mother. We've started this process, choosing to go through Paternityusa for the dna test. It was not possible to pay via their website, as payments from cambodian ip's appear to be blocked by default by their company. After a few emails, I was able to pay by giving the details over the phone. It was midnight on my end when I got through to them.

In a followup email, I provided all the details. They had originally sent me a pdf for the details, but I couldn't modify the pdf with the software in my possession (and I had no access to a printer, scanner, or fax), so I asked for a text document to be sent to me. They sent it the next day, but when I sent it back, the text showed up all on one line (diff in windows vs linux end of line formats). They did sort it out and asked for a second confirmation of who was the mother and who was the daughter, and then shipped the specimen collection to the embassy by the end of the next business day. The entire process costs $525 (including shipping). We are expecting to pay a $25 or so collection charge per person at the embassy. The other dna sites we investigated cost more or didn't include the international shipping or were really pathetic/incompetent in terms of the customer service. (we didn't check too many) So far we are quite satisfied with our choice, but wished their business hours included some weekend support.

Now the waiting game. The U.S. embassy only accepts fedex shipments Monday through Friday, so ours is likely to sit at the depot for a couple of days. Then we wait and see how long it takes to get the call to come in and give the samples. Then I figure it will take 2 weeks to ship back the U.S., process, and ship back. We'll see how it goes. Looking forward to getting away from PP for a couple of weeks.

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