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Back2Charleston

London Embassy Wait Times

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Hiya; I'm a UK national, married to a US citizen (in 2000) and currently living in the UK.

We mailed an I-130 with the US Embassy in London and received an subsequent letter, acknowledging the filing date as July 9, 2008. On the Embassy web site today, it says "As of September 15, 2008, we are adjudicating petitions filed on July 14, 2008". Aside from the fact that in my world it's still only September 13th, should I have heard back by now, since they've apparently passed the date we filed?

I'm waiting now for the postman to arrive ... please put me out of my misery for the next week, cos I'm leaving tomorrow for a trip to Barcelona till Friday!

Cheers

Jeremy (and Sheila)

Edited by Back2Charleston

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Dammit! If I'd only waited 1 more minute - the mail arrived (with a letter from the Embassy) as I hit the "post" button to send my previous message.

Well, that's put me out of my misery, except that I am being asked for my wife's previous divorce decree, which I KNOW we included with the original filing!! I have a document that looks official, is signed "by the court" and witnessed by someone - it has a gold sticker with embossed wording that is partially unreadable, but says "COURT OF XXXXXXXXXXXXXX" and "YORK CO., PA" (where the divorce took place).

The exact wording on the embassy letter received today is :

"Please provide a death certificate or divorce decree issued by a public authority to show that a public record exists of the death or termination of all prior marriage(s)."

and

"Please provide the full and final divorce decree, and proof that the decree was filed in York County, PA, for the marriage between the petitioner and <former husband's name>"

Is the document I described above going to be sufficient, do you think?

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Further to the above, I note this instruction on the "Step-by-Step Guide on How to File an I-130 for Relative (spouse) Outside the US" page on this site:

"9. If either you or your spouse were previously married, submit copies of documents showing that all prior marriages were legally terminated (court certified copies of the petitioner's and/or intending immigrant's divorce documents)."

What I sent off originally was a photocopy of my wife (the petitioner)'s final divorce decree, where the original included an official seal from the Court in PA. That's pretty much all we have to hand, therefore I've sent another copy to the relevant unit at the London Embassy today.

Again, your views on whether that's what was requested or whether they mean something else would be very helpful.

Thanks

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Further to the above, I note this instruction on the "Step-by-Step Guide on How to File an I-130 for Relative (spouse) Outside the US" page on this site:

"9. If either you or your spouse were previously married, submit copies of documents showing that all prior marriages were legally terminated (court certified copies of the petitioner's and/or intending immigrant's divorce documents)."

What I sent off originally was a photocopy of my wife (the petitioner)'s final divorce decree, where the original included an official seal from the Court in PA. That's pretty much all we have to hand, therefore I've sent another copy to the relevant unit at the London Embassy today.

Again, your views on whether that's what was requested or whether they mean something else would be very helpful.

Thanks

My guess is that divorce decrees are similar to marriage certificates. It sounds like you sent a copy of the finalized form before it was filed, which is like sending a copy of the signed marriage license before it was filed. So I think they are looking for a certified copy of the divorce decree from the county clerk after filing, which you would need to request from the county clerk and probably pay a small fee. It sounds like you sent what the lawyer prepared to file rather than the certificate you can request from the clerk after filing.

This is not a great site, but it looks like the certified copy if $9.50 and these are the people to contact -

http://www.york-county.org/departments/courts/proth.htm#FEES


My Crafting Blog - On a Roll - Blogspot

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_______________________________________________________

US Immigration Timeline

-------------------------

24 Feb 2007 - Sent I-130 to London USCIS office (I'm the petitioner)

25 May 2007 - NOA2

2 June 2007 - Received Packet 3

12 Oct 2007 - Sent Packet 3 back by special delivery

5 Nov 2007 - Interview in London - Approved without any hitches!

7 Nov 2007 - Visa and MBE arrived by SMS! :)

30 Jan 2008 - Fly to Michigan!! :)

*Note: Any delays in our case are only due to us taking things slowly

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My guess is that divorce decrees are similar to marriage certificates. It sounds like you sent a copy of the finalized form before it was filed, which is like sending a copy of the signed marriage license before it was filed. So I think they are looking for a certified copy of the divorce decree from the county clerk after filing, which you would need to request from the county clerk and probably pay a small fee. It sounds like you sent what the lawyer prepared to file rather than the certificate you can request from the clerk after filing.

This is not a great site, but it looks like the certified copy if $9.50 and these are the people to contact -

http://www.york-county.org/departments/courts/proth.htm#FEES

Thanks, but I'm not quite sure that's what I sent. The document I have is a one page original document, signed in pen by a judge (whose name I can actually decipher and who is still er, judging). There's also a gold embossed seal, which copies OK on my All-In-One inkjet, save for the embossed stuff. I think it's the final and original divorce decree, at least based on the legalese - what I think the USCIS might be wanting - in addition to what they now have - is a copy of the register from the courthouse, presumably with the exact same seal!

Thanks also for the website - fortunately, we still have friends in the area, and my local personal pitbull will be at the courthouse on Monday, getting copies and sending them immediately to me so I can give them to the Embassy. It won't hurt that the local pronotary (sp?) is a personal friend from when I lived in the US previously.

It's just another frustrating step in the journey, I suppose - I'm not sure what a photocopy of a court register will disclose that's anything different to a photocopy of the original divorce document, but the USCIS gets what the USCIS wants, I suppose :(

Onwards and upwards ...

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My guess is that divorce decrees are similar to marriage certificates. It sounds like you sent a copy of the finalized form before it was filed, which is like sending a copy of the signed marriage license before it was filed. So I think they are looking for a certified copy of the divorce decree from the county clerk after filing, which you would need to request from the county clerk and probably pay a small fee. It sounds like you sent what the lawyer prepared to file rather than the certificate you can request from the clerk after filing.

This is not a great site, but it looks like the certified copy if $9.50 and these are the people to contact -

http://www.york-county.org/departments/courts/proth.htm#FEES

Thanks, but I'm not quite sure that's what I sent. The document I have is a one page original document, signed in pen by a judge (whose name I can actually decipher and who is still er, judging). There's also a gold embossed seal, which copies OK on my All-In-One inkjet, save for the embossed stuff. I think it's the final and original divorce decree, at least based on the legalese - what I think the USCIS might be wanting - in addition to what they now have - is a copy of the register from the courthouse, presumably with the exact same seal!

Thanks also for the website - fortunately, we still have friends in the area, and my local personal pitbull will be at the courthouse on Monday, getting copies and sending them immediately to me so I can give them to the Embassy. It won't hurt that the local pronotary (sp?) is a personal friend from when I lived in the US previously.

It's just another frustrating step in the journey, I suppose - I'm not sure what a photocopy of a court register will disclose that's anything different to a photocopy of the original divorce document, but the USCIS gets what the USCIS wants, I suppose :(

Onwards and upwards ...

I hear you - it can really get frustrating. As far as I'm aware, the certified copy proves that the decree was filed properly.


My Crafting Blog - On a Roll - Blogspot

3179788211_95b93e62af_t.jpg3179788215_6a1e497e9b_t.jpg3165849344_f296789fd3_t.jpg

_______________________________________________________

US Immigration Timeline

-------------------------

24 Feb 2007 - Sent I-130 to London USCIS office (I'm the petitioner)

25 May 2007 - NOA2

2 June 2007 - Received Packet 3

12 Oct 2007 - Sent Packet 3 back by special delivery

5 Nov 2007 - Interview in London - Approved without any hitches!

7 Nov 2007 - Visa and MBE arrived by SMS! :)

30 Jan 2008 - Fly to Michigan!! :)

*Note: Any delays in our case are only due to us taking things slowly

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Whatever their process, sending a second copy of the document I described earlier seems to have done the trick. I've received a "Notice of Approval" in the mail this morning, saying that the petition submitted by my wife has been forwarded to the US Consulate in London. I'm guessing this is a good thing and that the copies of the certified entry in the relevant register - which are still winging their way across the pond - are not now required.

I'm not going to worry any more, but I am puzzled as to why sending a second copy of the document that I sent originally was really necessary. Perhaps someone just missed a page?

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Whatever their process, sending a second copy of the document I described earlier seems to have done the trick. I've received a "Notice of Approval" in the mail this morning, saying that the petition submitted by my wife has been forwarded to the US Consulate in London. I'm guessing this is a good thing and that the copies of the certified entry in the relevant register - which are still winging their way across the pond - are not now required.

I'm not going to worry any more, but I am puzzled as to why sending a second copy of the document that I sent originally was really necessary. Perhaps someone just missed a page?

Perhaps but it's sorted now. I guess it won't be long now before you land in Charleston. The weather is fab, can still go to the beach...look forward to seeing you guys here.


December 2003- love at first sight

September 2004- moved in together (working in Kosovo)

September 2005- moved to Abu Dhabi UAE (two year contract)

August 2007 -got the ILR for Scott (British Embassy in Abu Dhabi)

September 2007- moved to London

May 7th 2008- I-130 sent DCF London

May 10th 2008- email received, date of filing May 9th

July 23rd 2008 - RFE

July 24th 2008- all the requested documents mailed to the embassy ( affidavits from 3 friends/family, one from my husband, previous marriage certificate, some photos etc etc)

July 29, 2008 - APPROVED

Aug 2nd 2008 - Packet 3 received

Aug 4th 2008 - DS-230 and checklist mailed to the embassy

Aug 6th 2008 - Medical at Knighstbridge Doctors

Aug 14th 2008 - Packet 4 received

Aug 22nd 2008 - Interview

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Phew! All done and dusted - approved at the US Embassy in London this morning (and met Russell Brand (http://www.russellbrand.tv/) in the security hut) ... and I've received a text message promising return of my passport by tomorrow.

Just a flight to book and the plunging exchange rate to fix!

Thanks, everyone, for your help and support.

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congrats on the visa!


DCF Timeline here

POE Timeline

08/24/2008 POE Seattle

08/29/2008 SSN assigned

09/08/2008 SSN (Card) received

09/29/2008 Green Card received

I-90 Timeline (USCIS error)

11/10/2008 Send I-90 to Texas service center

12/xx/2008 NOA1

01/07/2009 Card production ordered

01/14/2009 Card mailed

01/xx/2009 Card received

I-751 Timeline

06/02/2010 Send I-751 to California service center

06/04/2010 Received at CSC

06/07/2010 NOA1

06/09/2010 Check cashed

07/27/2010 Biometrics

07/28/2010 Touch

09/02/2010 Approved

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congrats on the visa!

Thanks ... and what I sincerely hope will be the final postscript to this long and arduous journey, is that the SMS courier who was scheduled to deliver my passport back before noon today (at extra cost) has been involved in a traffic accident and returned to base. I've been promised delivery before noon tomorrow ... and no refund of any part of my payment!

Just when you think nothing else can go wr ... wr ... wr ... ...

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congrats on the visa!

Thanks ... and what I sincerely hope will be the final postscript to this long and arduous journey, is that the SMS courier who was scheduled to deliver my passport back before noon today (at extra cost) has been involved in a traffic accident and returned to base. I've been promised delivery before noon tomorrow ... and no refund of any part of my payment!

Just when you think nothing else can go wr ... wr ... wr ... ...

Did you ask about a refund on the extra payment or is it just that they didn't offer it? If you haven't asked, you should. It's not your fault that you haven't gotten what you paid for!


My Crafting Blog - On a Roll - Blogspot

3179788211_95b93e62af_t.jpg3179788215_6a1e497e9b_t.jpg3165849344_f296789fd3_t.jpg

_______________________________________________________

US Immigration Timeline

-------------------------

24 Feb 2007 - Sent I-130 to London USCIS office (I'm the petitioner)

25 May 2007 - NOA2

2 June 2007 - Received Packet 3

12 Oct 2007 - Sent Packet 3 back by special delivery

5 Nov 2007 - Interview in London - Approved without any hitches!

7 Nov 2007 - Visa and MBE arrived by SMS! :)

30 Jan 2008 - Fly to Michigan!! :)

*Note: Any delays in our case are only due to us taking things slowly

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Did you ask about a refund on the extra payment or is it just that they didn't offer it? If you haven't asked, you should. It's not your fault that you haven't gotten what you paid for!

Oh sure, I asked ... I'm well known (at least locally!) for being the #1 whiner :) However, they're going to redeliver before noon tomorrow, instead of today, which still counts under the terms of the agreement, apparently. That small print'll catch you out every time ... six pounds, when set against the overall costs of the visa process (and the plunging sterling/dollar rate), is small beans, I suppose.

But it better be here by noon tomorrow!!!

Thanks, btw, for the other advice I've gleaned from your postings.

Jeremy

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