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No news from the NVC? You might be progressing forward anyway.

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I thought my experience might be helpful to people who are waiting, waiting, waiting patiently for news from the National Visa Center. In brief:

1. I received I-797 (Notice of Action, Approval Notice) on May 5th. The notice said our file was being sent from Laguna Niguel, California to the National Visa Center located at 32 Rochester Ave., Portsmouth, New Hampshire. The notice also said we would be sent a notice from the NVC when our file was forwarded to the U.S. Embassy in Bangkok. The notice said we should wait at least 30 days before seeking any additional information. Thereafter, we could email "NVCINQUIRY@state.gov" for a status update

2. We waited patiently but I never received any additional information from the NVC, so I sent an email on to NVCINQUIRY@state.gov on June 13th -- which went unanswered. I sent another email to the same email address on June 18th and (again) received no reply.

3. On June 22nd, I researched NVC's web-site. I should have done this earlier. Contrary to the information contained in I-797, the web-site says the NVC will not reply by email. They provide a phone number for inquires.

4. I tried calling all day on the 22nd, but lines were always busy. There is an auto-hangup feature that prevents you from staying on the line. You must re-dial each time.
5. It then occurred to me that New Hampshire is 3-hours ahead of California and I was calling in the middle of their day, so I woke up at 5am (California time) on June 23rd so my call would be landing there at 8 am New Hampshire time. It worked; I got through.

6. The lady who I spoke to at the NVC was very helpful. She told me our file had been sent from NVC in New Hampshire to Bangkok on June 2nd. She gave me the Embassy's case number, etc.
7. That was very surprising news, but happy news.

8. We had still not received a phone call or email from the embassy, so I emailed them via USTravelDocs. They replied within a couple hours and told us our case file had been created. We were instructed to pay a fee and submit DS-160, which we did.

10. Thereafter, we just started following the directions printed on their web site and began preparing "Package #3."
11. The embassy letter came a couple days later.

12. Ultimately, we never did receive a "Package #3" or "Package #4." We simply located the packages on the embassy's web site, printed those forms and followed those instructions.

I don't know if the communication failures were on the government's end, my end or both. I live in a busy apartment complex and the mail is sometimes misdirected.

My "take-away" lesson from the experience would be this: Communicate proactively. I was too passive. Even though the process moved along at a fairly good clip, I was unaware of it for a long period of time.

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Thanks for sharing your experience and it is good things were happening albeit not being properly communicated to you.

I haven't been on this site very long but from browsing I picked up the need to be very proactive. That tidbit of information has served us well.

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I think the official (I mean, the VJ guides, not the USCIS/DOS) K1 guides should be updated to reflect the fact that many consulates don't actually send Packets 3/4 and that one should research the consulate-specific forum/portal to see what's required. As soon as the CEAC said ready we quickly did all the DS-160 and scheduling fees and scheduled our interview.

We would have never known we could do that unless some fellow Ecuador VJers did not post that info on the embassy-specific forum!

Edited by bluebook14

 
Spoiler

AOS

10/23/2015: File for AOS, AP and EAD

10/31/2015: NOA1 for AOS, AP and EAD

11/16/2015: Biometrics Appointment Letter received
11/25/2015: Biometrics Appointment
12/16/2015: e-mail about Interview scheduled for 2/10/2016
12/18/2015: Physical Interview Appointment in mail

01/25/2016: EAD & AP cards received in mail

02/10/2016: Interview @ local USCIS

02/11/2016: Approval

02/17/2016: GC received!

09/27/2017: Moved to FL

ROC

01/27/2018: Filed I751

02/05/2018: NOA1 received, GC extended for 1 year

event.png

 
event.png
 
 

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I thought my experience might be helpful to people who are waiting, waiting, waiting patiently for news from the National Visa Center. In brief:

1. I received I-797 (Notice of Action, Approval Notice) on May 5th. The notice said our file was being sent from Laguna Niguel, California to the National Visa Center located at 32 Rochester Ave., Portsmouth, New Hampshire. The notice also said we would be sent a notice from the NVC when our file was forwarded to the U.S. Embassy in Bangkok. The notice said we should wait at least 30 days before seeking any additional information. Thereafter, we could email "NVCINQUIRY@state.gov" for a status update

2. We waited patiently but I never received any additional information from the NVC, so I sent an email on to NVCINQUIRY@state.gov on June 13th -- which went unanswered. I sent another email to the same email address on June 18th and (again) received no reply.

3. On June 22nd, I researched NVC's web-site. I should have done this earlier. Contrary to the information contained in I-797, the web-site says the NVC will not reply by email. They provide a phone number for inquires.

4. I tried calling all day on the 22nd, but lines were always busy. There is an auto-hangup feature that prevents you from staying on the line. You must re-dial each time.

5. It then occurred to me that New Hampshire is 3-hours ahead of California and I was calling in the middle of their day, so I woke up at 5am (California time) on June 23rd so my call would be landing there at 8 am New Hampshire time. It worked; I got through.

6. The lady who I spoke to at the NVC was very helpful. She told me our file had been sent from NVC in New Hampshire to Bangkok on June 2nd. She gave me the Embassy's case number, etc.

7. That was very surprising news, but happy news.

8. We had still not received a phone call or email from the embassy, so I emailed them via USTravelDocs. They replied within a couple hours and told us our case file had been created. We were instructed to pay a fee and submit DS-160, which we did.

10. Thereafter, we just started following the directions printed on their web site and began preparing "Package #3."

11. The embassy letter came a couple days later.

12. Ultimately, we never did receive a "Package #3" or "Package #4." We simply located the packages on the embassy's web site, printed those forms and followed those instructions.

I don't know if the communication failures were on the government's end, my end or both. I live in a busy apartment complex and the mail is sometimes misdirected.

My "take-away" lesson from the experience would be this: Communicate proactively. I was too passive. Even though the process moved along at a fairly good clip, I was unaware of it for a long period of time.

Calling NVC two weeks after your NOA2 date is Step 5 in the VJ K1 flowchart....

http://www.visajourney.com/content/k1flow


Marriage/ AOS Timeline:

23 Dec 2015: Legal marriage

23 Jan 2016: Wedding!

23 Jan 2016: "Blizzard of the Century", wedding canceled/rescheduled (thank goodness we were legally married first or we'd have had a big problem!) :sleepy:

24 Jan 2016: Small "civil ceremony" with friends and family who were snowed in with us. December was a bit of a secret and people had traveled internationally and knew we *had* to get married that weekend, and our December legal marriage was nothing but signing a piece of paper at our priest's kitchen table, without any sort of vows etc so this was actually a very special (if not legally significant) day. (L)

16 Apr 2016: Filed for AOS and EAD/AP (We delayed a bit-- no big rush, enjoying the USCIS break)

23 Apr 2016: Wedding! Finally! :luv:

27 Apr 2016: Electronic NOA1 for all 3 :dancing:
29 Apr 2016: NOA1 Hardcopy for all 3
29 Jul 2016: Online service request for late EAD (Day 104)
29 Jul 2016: EAD/AP Approved ~3 hours after online service request
04 Aug 2016: RFE for Green Card (requested medicals/ vaccination record. They already have it). :ranting:
05 Aug 2016: EAD/AP Combo Card arrived! (Day 111)
08 Aug 2016: Congressional constituent request to get guidance on the RFE. Hoping they see they have the form and approve!

K-1 Visa Timeline:

PLEASE NOTE. This timeline was during the period of time when TSC was working on I-129fs and had a huge backlog. The average processing time was 210+ days. This is in no way predictive of your own timeline if you filed during or after April 2015, unless CSC develops a backlog. A backlog is anything above the 5-month goal time listed on USCIS's site

14 Feb 2015: Mailed I-129f to Dallas Lockbox. (L) (Most expensive Valentine's card I've ever sent!)

17 Feb 2015: NOA1 "Received Date"
19 Feb 2015: NOA1 Notice Date
08 Aug 2015: NOA2 email! :luv: (173 days from NOA1)

17 Aug 2015: Sent to NVC

?? Aug 2015: Arrived at NVC

25 Aug 2015: NVC Case # Assigned

31 Aug 2015: Left NVC for Consulate in San Jose

09 Sep 2015: Consulate received :dancing: (32 days from NOA2)

11 Sep 2015: Packet 3 emailed from embassy to me, the petitioner (34 days from NOA2).

18 Sep 2015: Medicals complete

21 Sep 2015: Packet 3 complete, my boss puts a temporary moratorium on all time off due to work emergency :clock:

02 Oct 2015: Work emergency clears up, interview scheduled (soonest available was 5 business days away--Columbus Day was in there)

13 Oct 2015: Interview

13 Oct 2015: VISA APPROVED :thumbs: (236 days from NOA1)

19 Oct 2015: Visa-in-hand

24 Oct 2015: POE !

15 Dec 2015: Fiance's mother's B-2 visa interview: APPROVED! So happy she will be at the wedding! :thumbs:

!

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Good suggestion. I saw some small print of the Embassy's web-site that said something to the effect of: "These packages will be mailed to you, but in case they're not mailed to you, print out the forms on this web site and follow the instructions." That was my "green light" to do what you did Bluebook14.

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but some of our embassies...

:ranting: #imlookingatatyouBARBADOS :ranting:

(1) don't have updated VJ embassy info pages (static since 2012) -- and will not allow VJ members to do ANY updates

(2) don't have updated EMBASSY WEBSITES:

taken from http://barbados.usembassy.gov/iv-k_1_visas.html

"Step 5: Complete fiancé(e) visa forms

  • Form DS-156, Non-Immigrant Visa Application (two copies)
  • Form DS-156(K) (PDF_56KB), Non-Immigrant Fiancé(e) Visa Application
  • Form DS-157, Supplemental Non-Immigrant Visa Application

K-1 visa applicants must complete two copies of the DS-156 form, and a copy of the DS-156(K) form. Do not sign DS-156(K) -- we will ask to sign it at the time of your interview. Each K-2 visa applicant must also submit two copies of the DS-156 form. The DS-156 MUST be filled out online, printed out and brought to your visa interview .

All male applicants aged 16 to 45 and both male and female applicants over age 16 must bring a completed DS-157 form to the interview."

ds-156? 157? seriously? what ARE those for?

(3) tell us when we call to wait for the NVC to contact us and to do nothing at all until they do

(3 a.) tell us when we call that if we pay the DS-160 fee or try to complete any other documents BEFORE BarbadosEmbassySimon says, "jump", it doesn't count and we'll have to pay the fees again

...and then after 40 minuteson their automated phone system, AT SEVEN A.M., ON THE DOT--

(20 minutes just to get an option to talk to someone and then 20 minutes more before someone answers)

-- NVC, tells you 'oh it's still in AP processing, that's all we know, and just wait for the embassy to contact you because we don't know anything more and that's normal'.

< /end rant>

Edited by trublubu2

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ZYKgm5.png

the K-1 visajourney
December 31, 2014/6pm: paid & checked in I-129F at FedEx/Kinko's; they said it should reach TSC by 2Jan15
June 26, 2015/9pm: received text/email that I-129F was approved--took 5 months/2 weeks/3 days

7Jan15: received notification via email and text of receipt at TSC
9Jan15: date of receipt on official NOA1 I-797 form that was mailed back from TSC
26Jun15/9pm: received text/email that I-129F was approved--took 5 months/2 weeks/3 days
3Jul15: received official NOA2 approval letter that said it was sent to NVC on 2Jul15

10Jul15: NVC received, created case number, and put into their system (at least that's what i was told on 17Jul15)
called NVC on July 17, 24 and will call Aug 7--STILL IN Administrative Processing
4Aug15 - checked CEAC site; finally "In Transit" (!!!)
7Aug15 - CEAC site says "Ready at Embassy (BGN)"
7Aug15 - 1st phone contact with BGN, was told everything is by email now, no phone calls are conducted :sleepy:
10Aug15 - 1st email contact with BGN--several auto responses, the American Consulate Service email address is the only one to reply after i sent screenshot of CEAC "Ready" page, saying they haven't received anything from NVC but that they sent Packet 3

11Aug15 - 2nd email contact with BGN--BridgetownACS replies the next day, ADMITTING that they sent Packet 3 via r-e-g-u-l-a-r INTERNATIONAL snail mail--not DHL--and attaches .pdf of Packet 3 :ranting:

12Aug15 - 3rd email contact with BGN
13Aug15 - BGN won't respond to 12Aug15 email; resent email asking for help with my 3 questions on how to proceed since they don't/won't answer questions via phone; signed Visa Interview Request letter DHLed to BGN
14Aug15 BGN received DHL visa interview request letter at 3pm...radio silence
4am 17aug15 - emailed embassy with .pdf proof of 14aug15 BGN receipt of signed interview request letter and made request for an interview date and time
9am 17aug15 - embassy emailed back with .pdf of packet 4 AND letter granting interview date and time! :wow:
official papers STILL on their way via INTERNATIONAL SNAIL MAIL though... :rolleyes:
4sep15 BGN confirms, via email, that the .pdf versions of Packet 3 & 4 they sent will be viable for use at the BGN interview and medicals
7-11sep15 - paper packet 4 arrived in DOM via international snail mail from BGN **AFTER** TS Erika came through (paper packet 3 is probably lost in the ether somewhere, lol)
22sep15 - interview AND APPROVAL at BGN!
5OCT15 - VISA IN PASSPORT & IN HAND VIA DHL!!!! :dance:


October 23, 2015 - POE: San Juan, PR & BWI, Maryland!!
:wub::wub: December 11, 2015 - MARRIED! :wub::wub:


2HbJm5.png
AOS journey
18jan16 - 430pm - i-485 packet overnighted to Chicago via UPS

16feb16 - biometrics appointment

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*** Thread moved from K-1 Process forum to the K-1 Case Progress subforum. ***


06-04-2007 = TSC stamps postal return-receipt for I-129f.

06-11-2007 = NOA1 date (unknown to me).

07-20-2007 = Phoned Immigration Officer; got WAC#; where's NOA1?

09-25-2007 = Touch (first-ever).

09-28-2007 = NOA1, 23 days after their 45-day promise to send it (grrrr).

10-20 & 11-14-2007 = Phoned ImmOffs; "still pending."

12-11-2007 = 180 days; file is "between workstations, may be early Jan."; touches 12/11 & 12/12.

12-18-2007 = Call; file is with Division 9 ofcr. (bckgrnd check); e-prompt to shake it; touch.

12-19-2007 = NOA2 by e-mail & web, dated 12-18-07 (187 days; 201 per VJ); in mail 12/24/07.

01-09-2008 = File from USCIS to NVC, 1-4-08; NVC creates file, 1/15/08; to consulate 1/16/08.

01-23-2008 = Consulate gets file; outdated Packet 4 mailed to fiancee 1/27/08; rec'd 3/3/08.

04-29-2008 = Fiancee's 4-min. consular interview, 8:30 a.m.; much evidence brought but not allowed to be presented (consul: "More proof! Second interview! Bring your fiance!").

05-05-2008 = Infuriating $12 call to non-English-speaking consulate appointment-setter.

05-06-2008 = Better $12 call to English-speaker; "joint" interview date 6/30/08 (my selection).

06-30-2008 = Stokes Interrogations w/Ecuadorian (not USC); "wait 2 weeks; we'll mail her."

07-2008 = Daily calls to DOS: "currently processing"; 8/05 = Phoned consulate, got Section Chief; wrote him.

08-07-08 = E-mail from consulate, promising to issue visa "as soon as we get her passport" (on 8/12, per DHL).

08-27-08 = Phoned consulate (they "couldn't find" our file); visa DHL'd 8/28; in hand 9/1; through POE on 10/9 with NO hassles(!).

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