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cdecarolis

To declare or not?

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Filed: Country: Ukraine
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Ok, so my GF, soon to be fiance, and I did meet through an IMB, however we very quickly, like before requesting contact info through said IMB, found each other on vKontakte.ru (Russian version of Facebook) and exchanged full info there. So, IMB has no record of the exchange and she never got the background check or whatever. Would it be safer to go ahead and admit we met through the IMB then circumvented it, or just pretend it never happened? No the issue isn't that I have a criminal background or previous marriages I'm trying to hide, the issue is the fundamental invasion of privacy and interference of the gov't. So without making this a discussion of whether IMBRA is right or not, which would be safest?

Edited by cdecarolis

There are only four question of any value in this life, Don Octavio; what is sacred, of what is the spirit made, what is worth living for and what is worth dieing for. The answer to each is the same - only love. ~Don Juan DeMarco

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Disclosing that you met through an agency will not hurt you at all. Given what you said in your OP, I would say you should disclose the whole story, just to ensure no one says the wrong thing at the visa interview or later at AOS. Not wanting the government too far in your business is completely understandable, but that argument won't help if there is ever a problem. Usually they don't ask about that at the visa interview because how you met has limited relevance - they just want to verify that you have in fact met personally. Mapt, from the RUB forum just had an interview the other day though, and his SO WAS asked this question. And at the AOS interview stateside it is usually asked. Again, no problem if you met through an agency, but BIG problems if you lie and get caught somehow. I probably wouldn't risk it.


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Filed: Country: Ukraine
Timeline

Disclosing that you met through an agency will not hurt you at all. Given what you said in your OP, I would say you should disclose the whole story, just to ensure no one says the wrong thing at the visa interview or later at AOS. Not wanting the government too far in your business is completely understandable, but that argument won't help if there is ever a problem. Usually they don't ask about that at the visa interview because how you met has limited relevance - they just want to verify that you have in fact met personally. Mapt, from the RUB forum just had an interview the other day though, and his SO WAS asked this question. And at the AOS interview stateside it is usually asked. Again, no problem if you met through an agency, but BIG problems if you lie and get caught somehow. I probably wouldn't risk it.

I was leaning towards disclosing anyway, for exactly the reasons you mentioned, but was wondering if the fact that we went around the agency would make a difference. Doesn't sound like it though. Thanks for the help so far guys. :)


There are only four question of any value in this life, Don Octavio; what is sacred, of what is the spirit made, what is worth living for and what is worth dieing for. The answer to each is the same - only love. ~Don Juan DeMarco

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I was leaning towards disclosing anyway, for exactly the reasons you mentioned, but was wondering if the fact that we went around the agency would make a difference. Doesn't sound like it though. Thanks for the help so far guys. :)

Best of luck to you! Check in as you go through the process, and keep us informed.


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Travelers - not tourists

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Disclosing that you met through an agency will not hurt you at all. Given what you said in your OP, I would say you should disclose the whole story, just to ensure no one says the wrong thing at the visa interview or later at AOS. Not wanting the government too far in your business is completely understandable, but that argument won't help if there is ever a problem. Usually they don't ask about that at the visa interview because how you met has limited relevance - they just want to verify that you have in fact met personally. Mapt, from the RUB forum just had an interview the other day though, and his SO WAS asked this question. And at the AOS interview stateside it is usually asked. Again, no problem if you met through an agency, but BIG problems if you lie and get caught somehow. I probably wouldn't risk it.

If you put IMB down -they (the embassy/consulate) will make sure your beneficiary was given all the information that the IMB source was suppose to do (like your background check, etc..) - they will also give them a handbook outlining what IMBRA is.

They also use this to keep an eye on IMB's that are not following the rules.

It will not stop your from getting a visa, but the IMBRA law invokes certain things that have to be done prior to them granting a visa.

Here is a good write up on this part of the IMBRA:

International Marriage Broker Defined

The definition of International Marriage Brokers in IMBRA covers virtually all for-profit matchmaking entities, whether U.S. based on not, whose main business is the facilitation of dating or like services between U.S. citizens and foreigners. The definition excludes matchmaking sites whose principal business in not providing dating services between U.S. residents and foreign clients and which charges like fees for its services regardless of the gender or national origin of the client.

International Marriage Broker Obligations

Before an IMB can release the personal contact information of a foreign client to a U.S. client, the IMB must:

  • Search the National Sex Offender Registry to determine the record of the U.S. citizen, and disclose any information found concerning the U.S. citizen to the foreign client
  • Obtain a signed statement from the U.S. citizen revealing any current or past protection or restraining order, most criminal arrests and convictions, virtually all arrest or convictions for domestic or sexual offenses, multiple convictions for substance and/or alcohol abuse, the U.S. client's marital history (including the reason for termination of any prior marriages), the ages of any of the U.S. citizen's children under the age of 18, and a list of all States and counties that the U.S. citizen has lived in since the client was 18 years of age.
  • Distribute to the foreign national a pamphlet currently being developed by the U.S. government to educate foreign fiancé(e)s about U.S. domestic abuse laws and resources for immigrant victims in the U.S.; and
  • Obtain the foreign nationals written consent to disclosing her personal contact information.

IMBRA and Initial Contact With the Fiancee

The background information must be provided before the foreign client's personal contact information may be released to the U.S. client. Additional information must be provided by the IMB to ensure that the foreign national is aware of his/her (for simplicity's sake, we will adopt the female gender henceforth for the beneficiary, and the male for the petitioner) immigrant rights in the U.S. and her ability to defend herself against domestic abuse. At the consular level, all K1 visa beneficiaries will be asked during the visa interview whether they became acquainted with their U.S. citizen fiancé(e) through an IMB, and if so, whether the IMB complied with the various disclosure obligations of IMBRA. K Visa Interview Changes

The U.S. consul must ask the fiancé(e) during the Embassy/Consulate interview whether an IMB facilitated the couple's relationship, and if so, the consul must determine the name of the IMB and confirm that the IMB acted in accordance with the new requirements regarding information gathering and disclosure, as well as pamphlet dissemination.

However, with that said, since you never exchange contact info via the IMB - but used vKontakte.ru (which is not an IMB), you do not fall under the IMBRA in my opinion.


My Advice is usually based on "Worst Case Scenario" and what is written in the rules/laws/instructions. That is the way I roll... -Protect your Status - file before your I-94 expires.

WARNING: Phrases in this post may sound meaner than they were intended to be. Read the Adjudicator's Field Manual from USCIS

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