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Infantry Grunt

Possible EWI Problem?

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I have a question perhaps you can help me with. I was directed here from another forum, but one can never get too much good advice, so I figured I'd run it by here, as well. I recently got married to a Canadian citizen. When she came down we had no intention of getting married at the time. We referenced the immigration websites and she even called the Immigration Department, and they said that under 180 days is considered a visitor status and perfectly legal. When we crossed the boarder, our IDs were checked and they told us to have a nice day and thanked me for my service. She had an insurance policy for travelers that took effect on the day of departure, and strictly only that day, and the policy holder had to be in the native country. A month later, we decided she should stay for another month and she extended her insurance. At the end of that month, the same thing. During this third month we were married. We knew each other for 14 months prior to her coming down here, however being in the military, I had little time to be with her. The marriage is definately not an immigration marriage, she said she'd be just as happy if I had gone to Canada.

I'm in the US Military. Upon going to the base legal representative, I was informed that she is considered EWI status because she didn't sign a logbook or some such thing. She had crossed the boarder many a time in the past and never been made to sign a book or anything, we didn't know it existed. We did not lie to the sentry checking IDs, we told him she'd be here about a month, which, at the time, was the plan. He made no mention of such an inspection process, all we knew was that inspection was possible if the sentry deemed fit, which, being a military man myself with two combat tours, I assumed meant they could pull her out if they felt uneasy and inspect her and my vehicle to make sure she had no intention of staying or conducting harm to the US. I did not know there was a logbook, nor did she, she had never been prompted before. She does not have a passport.

All I can find online is that she cannot change status from EWI. She has been here less than 90 days, so I know she does not face a 3 or 10 year ban. Technically, she's not even EWI, right? However, I do not want to send her back to Canada unless I absolutely have to. If I have to, I wish to travel with her. HOWEVER, I am in the process of reenlisting. If I reenlist, I'm stuck here without her for 4 years or until the process is complete, whichever comes first. If I do not and opt to go with her, then I am throwing away my career, which would constitute extreme hardship for sure, but I doubt it will be taken that way by a court as it will have been on a voluntary basis. Needless to say, she's a wreck. She never wanted to be illegal, and through our research we thought that everything we did was within the confines of the law. We even had a notarized form stating that she doesn't have an SSN when we wed.

My question is, what can I do to keep her with me while we conduct the immigration process that won't get her barred from the country, and won't force me to abandon my career of serving this country? I don't want her deported and I don't want to lose my career. I know the government is run emotionlessly, but I'd like to think that after two combat tours in Iraq I could avoid being seperated from those I love, until the next time that my duty requires me to deploy.

I contacted an immigration attorney, and he states that technically, since she did present herself for inspection, even though they didn't process her, that she is not EWI, technically. Of course, it's hard to prove it, even though we can prove that she's been here less than six months. However, her not being technically EWI still wouldn't allow me to change her status from here, would it? Does the boarder maintain video cameras to perhaps use to prove that she was there on a certain date? Even though, admitedly, I do not recall which checkpoint we went through.

Even though she was technically inspected, by not running her through the system or having a logbook signed or whatever, is that his fault that she has no proof of status or is that a situation that we have to pay for his error?

The attorney stated that Canadian citizens are admitted based on NAFTA without an I-94 card and therefore have a tough time PROVING that they went through inspection, but that does not mean they didn't

Any advice or references you may be able to provide me would be greatly appreciated. Thanks in advance

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Do not let her leave she had no intenttions to marry and stay when she came in you can do the paper work while she is in the US. Someone will be on soon to give you more details but just dont let her leave. The immigration attorney had better advice then the one you got before.


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I'm just concerned that by filing the paperwork I may ignite a controversy. I'm going to talk the the base legal rep first tomorrow, hopefully she's in a better mood. I may have neglected to tell her my wife is Canadian and she may have assumed Mexican, and I hear Canadians have slightly different rules applying to them. Provided the rep is in a good mood and helpful, I'll go from there. If not, I'll reevaluate my strategy

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Yes you can file the papes and it will not cause any controversy with USCIS there have been plenty of Canadians right here on VJ that has done it the way you can do itI'm sure one of the more knowledgeable ppl will give you better info then myself


Spoiler

Met Playing Everquest in 2005
Engaged 9-15-2006
K-1 & 4 K-2'S
Filed 05-09-07
Interview 03-12-08
Visa received 04-21-08
Entry 05-06-08
Married 06-21-08
AOS X5
Filed 07-08-08
Cards Received01-22-09
Roc X5
Filed 10-17-10
Cards Received02-22-11
Citizenship
Filed 10-17-11
Interview 01-12-12
Oath 06-29-12

Citizenship for older 2 boys

Filed 03/08/2014

NOA/fee waiver 03/19/2014

Biometrics 04/15/14

Interview 05/29/14

In line for Oath 06/20/14

Oath 09/19/2014 We are all done! All USC no more USCIS

 

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Immigration isnt cheap,lol

If she came to the states with NO intention of staying like in your case,it is fine, a fair # of VJ'ers have done that route. Keep in mind that she CAN"T leave the USA (including to canada) until she gets to a certain point in the process. The problem isnt actually leaving the USA, its the getting back into the USA. There was a VJ member that went the k1 route, which is a 1 time entry visa, cant leave the USA until one gets advance parole (AP) or completes AOS, but she did, and was ok indoing so a few times, THEN on 1 tiem re-entering the USA from Canada was stopped and denied entry! She then had to stay in Canada and start the k3 or cr-1 process, not a lot of fun,lol

Welcome to VJ. I served in the Cdn Army,Navy and Air Force and spent a fair bit of time working with the yanks.


Canadians Visiting the USA while undergoing the visa process, my free advice:

1) Always tell the TRUTH. never lie to the POE officer

2) Be confident in ur replies

3) keep ur response short and to the point, don't tell ur life story!!

4) look the POE officer in the eye when speaking to them. They are looking for people lieing and have been trained to find them!

5) Pack light! No job resumes with you

6) Bring ties to Canada (letter from employer when ur expected back at work, lease, etc etc)

7) Always be polite, being rude isn't going to get ya anywhere, and could make things worse!!

8) Have a plan in case u do get denied (be polite) It wont harm ur visa application if ur denied,that is if ur polite and didn't lie! Refer to #1

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Don't panic! EWI means "Entry WITHOUT inspection". She WAS inspected, therefore she is NOT EWI. As other's have posted, do NOT let her leave the US now!!!! Unless you want to complicate things further, she needs to stay in the US until she has either AP or GC.

I was in the same boat (crossed the border by car, officer looked at our passport and said "Have a nice day". No stamp, no I-94. This, as you know, is typical for Canadians. We hired an attorney to handle our AOS application, because we didn't know how to handle this very issue. She just filled it out saying "no I-94 given, as applicant is Canadian citizen", or something to that nature.

When I entered the US, I was with my sister-in-law in her vehicle. So, my attorney wrote up an affidavit for her to sign and have notarized. It basically said that she and I crossed the Canada US border on such-and-such day, at said POE. She was driving, I was the passenger. We were in vehicle of XYZ make and year, license plate # xyz123. The border officer inspected our passports, but did not stamp them. Then it was signed, dated, notarized, etc. I also signed a similar, notarized affidavit, stating the same. As you pointed out, they do have cameras at the borders, so technically if they really wanted to check on it, they could have pulled the video for that day, found the vehicle by the license plate # we provided, and zoomed in to see that we were both in said vehicle as sworn, entering through the border.

As it turns out, the interviewing officer did not ask for the affidavits, but I was glad I had them! She just asked me "Where/when did you enter the US?" and said "So you were inspected, but you did not get a stamp or I-94, correct?" to which I replied "That is correct. He looked at our passports, and waved us through." She said "Are they still doing that up there?! That's so weird!" (more out of general curiosity, not directed at me as a question)

So relax.... as long as your wife was inspected, even if she did not get a stamp or 1-94, she is here legally. "Intent" is another matter..... as long as she did not come here with the intention of marrying you and staying, she is OK..... but that's a separate issue from the EWI one.

Hope that helps!

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One should mention that it is perfectly fine if you want to do the k3 or cr-1 route and she goes back to canada. One can still visit. Thats what we did. i got married on one trip to DC, then went home and we filed for the cr-1 and I visited monthly. I was still in the Air Force. But if she wants to stay and AOS,thats fine too, just dont leave!! lol


Canadians Visiting the USA while undergoing the visa process, my free advice:

1) Always tell the TRUTH. never lie to the POE officer

2) Be confident in ur replies

3) keep ur response short and to the point, don't tell ur life story!!

4) look the POE officer in the eye when speaking to them. They are looking for people lieing and have been trained to find them!

5) Pack light! No job resumes with you

6) Bring ties to Canada (letter from employer when ur expected back at work, lease, etc etc)

7) Always be polite, being rude isn't going to get ya anywhere, and could make things worse!!

8) Have a plan in case u do get denied (be polite) It wont harm ur visa application if ur denied,that is if ur polite and didn't lie! Refer to #1

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Hi,

I have to agree with everyone here that it looks like your wife is probably eligible to just do an Adjustment of Status, rather than having your wife go back to Canada to do the visa process.

This type of situation has been discussed quite a bit on VJ. Here is the thing, basically it is all about intent - as you mentioned - you two did not intend to get married when your wife crossed the border (oh and I wouldn't worry about whatever 'log' book someone mentioned or about the I-94 - it's very uncommon for a Canadian to get an I-94 and both Canada and the U.S. are aware of this).

This is a reference I found last week and posted it in response to someone who was thinking of having her Husband adjust status - different situation though as they had already filed for a CR1 before he entered to visit.

I am not saying that this applies to you and your wife, i'm merely quoting it so that you will have some reference as to how USCIS can look at some adjustment of status cases (which is obviously your concern).

Oh and the NAFTA reference - has nothing to do with Canadians crossing the border in general - we were doing this without any official documents long before anyone thought of NAFTA :thumbs:

What are the consequences of marrying a US citizen after originally entering the US on a Tourist visa or a 90 day visa waiver link

Firstly, it is legitimate to enter the US on a tourist visa or visa waiver and marry a U.S. citizen if AFTER doing so you actually intend to return to your home country.

However, if someone simply enters as a tourist and subsequently marries a US citizen or otherwise applies for a Green card thru the adjustment of status process, and does so soon after entering as a tourist the Immigration service could accuse them of 'visa fraud'.

By and large, the 30/60/90 day rule is applied to determine whether the 'tourist' had a fraudulent intent upon entry.

The rule is applied as follows;

If s/he applies for a green card/adjustment of status within 30 days of entering the US, fraud is pretty much presumed-and the application will be denied

If s/he enters between 30 & 60 days, the presumption of fraud can be overcome, i.e. it is 'rebuttable'

I s/he enters between 60 and 90 days the presumption reverses. Unless there is specific evidence of a preconceived immigrant/fraudulent intent the adjustment of status application will be granted

For an application filed more that 90 days after entry , the visa fraud issue seldom arises

If fraud is found, then the consequences could be severe. At the very least the applicant will be required to return to his or her home country to file for a fiancée of spousal visa. In the worst case, the individual could be barred from re-entering the United States in the future under any circumstances.

To summarize: DO NOT ENTER THE UNITED STATES ON A TOURIST VISA IF YOU HAVE AN INTENT TO REMAIN THERE PERMANENTLY. TAKE TIME TO OBTAIN THE CORRECT VISA HOWEVER INCONVENIENT THAT MAY SEEM TO BE.

Edited by trailmix

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thanks for all the great info guys. Very helpful. Of course, the base rep wasn't in today, so we have to stress about it over the weekend. But the more and more I read, the better and better I feel

To be honest, I do not recall which POE it was from Ontario to New York, only that it wasn't Buffalo. I was utilizing a GPS and I just turned when it instructed me to. However, I vaguely remember what the road ahead looked like, perhaps Google Maps satellite will help refresh my memory. They'd have to be pretty suspicious to actually dig up the tapes for all day and weed through all the traffic, but I'd much rather be prepared for anything, so the correct POE would be useful

thanks again! I'll keep everyone updated as we go along

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so the correct POE would be useful

Not just useful.... NECESSARY! You have to put this on the I-485 application, and they will ask you again at the interview. Saying "I don't remember" is not going to bode well for you :no:

Through process of elimination, and online maps, etc, you should be able to figure it out :thumbs:

But you're not alone....... when I asked my sister-in-law for the affidavit, she said "I don't remember which one we came through." (there are two between Vancouver/Blaine) I knew 110% it was the truck crossing, but she didn't remember!! So you are not the only one who forgets these things!!

L

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http://www.cbp.gov/xp/cgov/toolbox/contacts/ports/ might help refresh ur memory,just pick the State you crossed into

Canadians Visiting the USA while undergoing the visa process, my free advice:

1) Always tell the TRUTH. never lie to the POE officer

2) Be confident in ur replies

3) keep ur response short and to the point, don't tell ur life story!!

4) look the POE officer in the eye when speaking to them. They are looking for people lieing and have been trained to find them!

5) Pack light! No job resumes with you

6) Bring ties to Canada (letter from employer when ur expected back at work, lease, etc etc)

7) Always be polite, being rude isn't going to get ya anywhere, and could make things worse!!

8) Have a plan in case u do get denied (be polite) It wont harm ur visa application if ur denied,that is if ur polite and didn't lie! Refer to #1

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Yes it definitely is. There's a Tim's right there by the duty free shop... does that ring a bell? It may not have been completely visible going through into the U.S. though.

Not sure what others there are in the area. I typically go through that one and once or twice through Buffalo.

Don't have a GPS, but don't some of them save your previous trips? I think my friend's does that. Maybe double check and you may be able to know for sure.


K-1 Visa Timeline

01.07.08 Sent in I-129f package

01.24.08 NOA1

03.25.08 NOA2

04.18.08 Package 3 received

05.07.08 Medical @ Dr. Seiden's in T.O.

05.09.08 Sent back checklist & forms

05.13.08 Mtl received & eligible for interview

06.12.08 Called DOS & found out interview date

06.19.08 Received interview letter

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07.28.08 Received Visa!!!

08.04.08 POE Alexandria Bay

08.18.08 Civil Ceremony

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AOS Timeline

04.25.09 Sent in AOS, EAD, AP package

04.27.09 Accepted at Chicago Office

05.01.09 NOAS for AOS, EAD & AP

05.12.09 Biometrics Appt letter

06.02.09 Biometrics done

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07.09.09 Received AP

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08.17.09 AOS interview - Approved !! :D

Removing Conditions

08.16.11 I-751 received by VSC

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09.07.11 Biometrics appt notice

09.30.11 Biometrics appt

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