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Canadian engaged to American, living in Japan

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Hiya,

I'm a Canadian citizen, engaged to an American.

We've been living together in Asia for the past 4 years,

and we feel it's finally time to settle into a home and plant some seeds.

We wish to live in New Orleans, her hometown, and plan to be married there this May.

Looking over our visa options, it looks like I could:

A) Arrive on a tourist visa, get married in the US, then apply for citizenship in country.

B) Fly home to Canada, apply for the fiance visa, and fly down once that is approved.

C) Get married in Japan, arrive in the US, and apply for citizenship.

I'm aware that option B will take 4-8 months to be approved, so it won't make the May date...

My question is: Is it better to arrive in US and hope for a tourist visa entry* or should we get married here in Japan** and arrive in America with a marriage certificate but no visas?

*I've heard that it can be problematic to enter America on a tourist visa if you have intention to be married during that visit. Can anyone give me their thoughts about this?

**We won't have time to file for Direct Consular Filing in Japan.

Thanks for any and all advice,

Look forward to hearing from you :D

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DCF in Japan doesn't exist anymore.

Have thought about filing the I-129F NOW, setting up the interview in Montreal ?


Sometimes my language usage seems confusing - please feel free to 'read it twice', just in case !
Ya know, you can find the answer to your question with the advanced search tool, when using a PC? Ditch the handphone, come back later on a PC, and try again.

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Coming to the US on a tourist visa (or the canadian equivalent) with the intent to immigrate is considered fraud and probably not the best way to start off your immigration journey.

You won't be applying for citizenship, you'll be applying for a green card. Citizenship doesn't come until 3 years after you've received your green card if you are still married, 5 years if you are not still married.

Let's go over the options you stated:

A) this is illegal. If you DID do this though, it would take about 8-10 months.

B) only legal option you stated. Again, 8-10 months. After you got the visa, you would come to the States and get married within 90 days. Then you would have to apply to adjust your status to get your green card. This option is more expensive and more time to actually have green card in hand.

C) Again, illegal. You could get married there and stay there while you file, but you say you have no time for that.

GOOD LUCK!


HUSBAND'S CASE

9/17/2011 - sent I-13

09/19/2011 - noa1 received

3/16/2012 - case sent to my local USCIS office for additional processing

4/21/2012 - AP. If we haven't heard from them in SIX MONTHS (omg) we can feel free to call them!!! Thanks!

9/20/2012 - Interview scheduled - October 3!!!!

10/3/2012 - Interview went well but she must look at his A-file more before decision.

10/12/2012 - I-130 APPROVED! APPROVED! APPROVED!

KIDS' CASES

04/20/2012: NOA107/20/2012: instead of an approval, we got thrown into AP. sigh

11/01/2012: Boys' I-130 interview set for November 28, 2012.

11/28/2012: I-130s APPROVED! APPROVED! APPROVED!

NVC

12/14/2012: NVC Received

12/31/2012: Case number/IIN

12/31/2012: DS-3032 sent

01/08/2013: DS-3032 accepted

01/02/2013: AOS bill0

1/03/2013: AOS bill shows PAID

01/04/2013: AOS package sent

01/09/2013: IV bill

01/10/2013: IV bill shows PAID

01/11/2013: IV package sent

01/23/2013: Case complete

02/01/2013: Interview scheduled

US Embassy Lagos

02/22/2013: Embassy received

03/01/2013: Medical

03/20/2013: Interview - was told the boys would have been approved on the spot if they had pics! Errrr :-(

04/15/2013: DNA test

05/15/2013: Emailed embassy BEGGING them to let boys drop off passports for visa insertion. IT WORKED!!!

05/31/2013: Visa in hand

06/02/2013: POE JFK!!!!!!

5spxll0m6aa.png

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let me be the first to say that every one here.. so as not to be banned, will say to go with option 2.. pm me for more questions.. :whistle:


LPR 2007

CITIZENSHIP 2012

N-400 filed based marriage to usc = april ??

biometrics = june 21

interview = august 2

oath taking = august 29

done..

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I see a major misconception in your planning. Getting married to a US citizen does not give you citizenship. It does not even entitle you to a visa. It only gives the US citizen a means to petition the US government for you to immigrate as either a fiancé or spouse and get a green card. There are many steps between where you are now and citizenship and you must be a green card holder for at least 3 years to even apply.

I suggest first of all you look at the guides. Start here and you can see a chart that shows you the major points of each: http://www.visajourney.com/content/compare

As for your options as you’ve laid them out:

A) Illegal. You are not allowed to come into the US on a tourist visa with the intent to get married and stay. You have to have either a fiancé visa (k-1) or be married and have a CR-1 (spousal) visa.

B) Completely doable. Won’t make your timeframe but no grey areas and it will give your fiancé time to establish herself in order to be able to prove domicile and financial well-being and/or arrange a co-sponsor.

C) Illegal. To immigrate to the US you must have a Visa. In this case the CR-1 Visa.

To continue on: Each and every time you POE (point of Entry) to the US, you must be able to show that you have no immigration intent. Even as a Canadian. You need to be able to show proof of ties to another country. They may let you in to get married if you tell them you are going home to Canada after, they may not. For me when I got married down south I brought my lease agreement, a letter from my boss to tell them when I was expected back etc.

Once again please read the guides and it will give you more of an understanding of what is actually required.

*sorry for all the overlap. I took a LONG time to type and get my wording straight :blush:

Edited by hikergirl

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let me be the first to say that every one here.. so as not to be banned, will say to go with option 2.. pm me for more questions.. :whistle:

LOL....yes, "pm him for more questions..." :whistle::innocent::whistle:


HUSBAND'S CASE

9/17/2011 - sent I-13

09/19/2011 - noa1 received

3/16/2012 - case sent to my local USCIS office for additional processing

4/21/2012 - AP. If we haven't heard from them in SIX MONTHS (omg) we can feel free to call them!!! Thanks!

9/20/2012 - Interview scheduled - October 3!!!!

10/3/2012 - Interview went well but she must look at his A-file more before decision.

10/12/2012 - I-130 APPROVED! APPROVED! APPROVED!

KIDS' CASES

04/20/2012: NOA107/20/2012: instead of an approval, we got thrown into AP. sigh

11/01/2012: Boys' I-130 interview set for November 28, 2012.

11/28/2012: I-130s APPROVED! APPROVED! APPROVED!

NVC

12/14/2012: NVC Received

12/31/2012: Case number/IIN

12/31/2012: DS-3032 sent

01/08/2013: DS-3032 accepted

01/02/2013: AOS bill0

1/03/2013: AOS bill shows PAID

01/04/2013: AOS package sent

01/09/2013: IV bill

01/10/2013: IV bill shows PAID

01/11/2013: IV package sent

01/23/2013: Case complete

02/01/2013: Interview scheduled

US Embassy Lagos

02/22/2013: Embassy received

03/01/2013: Medical

03/20/2013: Interview - was told the boys would have been approved on the spot if they had pics! Errrr :-(

04/15/2013: DNA test

05/15/2013: Emailed embassy BEGGING them to let boys drop off passports for visa insertion. IT WORKED!!!

05/31/2013: Visa in hand

06/02/2013: POE JFK!!!!!!

5spxll0m6aa.png

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Hi all!

Thanks for your thoughts on our situation.

I'm relieved to know I can make my mistakes on this message board, rather being banned from my fiancé's country. :bonk:

Darnell - Japan doesn't do this anymore? Where did you find this info? From what I've read, they could process this request..

- Filing now, with an interview in Montreal would work. But I'm trying to avoid returning to Canada and waiting, away from my boo.

Kazulie - Bingo! I'd rather not start my immigration with fraud!

Thanks for the clarification of green card vs. citizenship. I'll be sure to use the right terms when I'm smiling and talking to the immigration officers. :D

hikergirl - Thanks for further clarifications, and for the handy guides. Nice to see the pros and cons, nice to see I have options.

Will be sure to have proof of intention to exit when I POE, great tip.

Good looking out, y'all. Big big thanks! :)

Now: We have our wedding planned for mid May, I have family flying a long way to be there. They've already bought tickets and all.

It would be fine if it wasn't so much a wedding as a celebration, we aren't planning to do it too traditionally anyways.. :innocent:

So what is the smartest, least damnable route to take?

A) Get married in Japan. Fly to America for a celebration, with documents proving I will be returning to Asia for another contract as an English teacher. File for DFC during this new contract.

B) Remain engaged, fly to America and throw a celebration without actually marrying. Return to Asia and then get married and file for DFC.

C) Get married ASAP, file for DFC now. Stay in Japan until we get our visa, cross our fingers that 11 weeks is enough time. I've read that it can take 2-12 weeks for the DFC process around here.

D) You tell me.. Any bright ideas, even if you have to PM them to me :whistle:

All thoughts are welcomed, thanks for your words of wisdom!! :star:

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W/o DCF, you can do this:

Marry in Japan, or US, doesn't matter.

If you want to fly to US for celebration, or go to US for marriage, either is fine.

Either case, bring ties to return to Japan.

File I-130 for CR1 visa after marriage.

Wife move back to US and get job from US company to be able to pass Affidavit of support in 4-5 months post I-130 filing.

Wait approx 8-9 months total for approval of visa while occasionally visiting wife because you luvs each othr.

Move to US and live happily ever after.


oldlady.gif

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Darnell was correct in that DCF is not available in Japan any longer. http://travel.state.gov/visa/immigrants/immigrants_5254.html They changed it so you cannot do DCF unless the country you are in has a USCIS International Office.

If you are poking around or someone “helpful” PMs you, you may see something about getting married in the US and adjusting status and staying. This is in place for people already in the US when they decide they want to marry the person they are visiting and stay(or are here on another type of Visa). As we’ve told you above, it’s illegal to enter the US with the intent of immigrating without a Visa. You run the risk of being barred from the US for life due to misrepresentation because you came to the US with the intention to stay and this is circumventing the immigration system. The headache, worry and cost of trying to overcome a ban are extreme and sometimes the ban just sticks and you are S.O.L. Just before Christmas there was a Canadian on the board who found VJ when he had gotten turned back around at the airport because this was his intent and he didn’t know any better. He had this method recommended by friends and was lucky because he didn’t get a ban and he was truthful to the CBS. Totally screwed the wedding plans though because he was not allowed into the US.

As KDH has said it doesn’t matter so much where you get married. It’s all about the steps that you guys want to take. My preferred method was a CR-1 Visa because I wanted the option of working and being able to travel outside of the US once I had POE’d with my Visa. I had my destination wedding in the US and then flew back home for the CR-1 process. The only way for you guys to not be separated for a while and keep the May plans in place would be to get married as planned and then both of you fly back to Japan while doing the immigration process. However you would then need a co-sponsor for the financial part.

There is a lot to absorb and it takes a while to take it all in especially when there is a lot of misinformation out there.

Good luck.

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The only item I will add, as I agree with KDH and Hikergirl in their thoughts, is to keep in mind that you will need to go to the consulate in Montreal in order to complete your interview process if you go the CR1 route. Will you have that flexibility in your work in Japan to be able to just fly out to Canada to do your interview when the time comes? We don't get to pick our date, they are assigned to us. Just something else to keep in mind as it sounds like you've already got a very complicated set of plans on the go!


USCIS - 40 DAYS
2012-10-30: FedEx delivered I-130 to Chicago Lockbox Mail Room
2012-11-01: NOA1 by email - MSC
2012-11-02: $420 (x3) debited from our account
2012-11-05: NOA1 hard copies received, Priority Date 2012-10-30
2012-12-11: NOA2


NVC - 26 DAYS
2013-01-02: Rec'd case#, IIN, BIN & OPTIN emails for EP sent
2013-01-03: Submitted DS-261 (x3)
2013-01-07: AOS bills invoiced and paid & OPTIN for EP accepted for each of us
2013-01-08: AOS bills appear as paid & AOS packages sent by email
2013-01-08: IV bill invoiced & paid (kids' only)
2013-01-09: IV bill appears as paid (kids' only)
2013-01-09: IV Package emailed & DS-260 submitted online (kids only)
2013-01-11: AOS received -notified by email
2013-01-11: IV bill invoiced & paid (for me)
2013-01-14: IV bill appears as paid (for me)
2013-01-14: IV Supporting Docs received for kids - notified by email
2013-01-14: IV Package emailed & DS-260 submitted online (me only)
2013-01-18: IV Supporting Docs received for me - notified by email
2013-01-18: Son#1 CASE COMPLETE - Son#2 checklist - saying $ on I-864 don't match tax return (but they do)-resubmitted
2013-01-23: AOS 2nd submission for Son #2 received - notified by email
2013-01-25: My CASE COMPLETE
2013-01-28: ALL 3 OF OUR CASES ARE NOW COMPLETE
2013-02-06: Packet 4 Received by email

MEDICAL ~ CONSULATE ~ POE REMOVAL OF CONDITIONS - 160 DAYS NATURALIZATION
2013-02-13: Medicals 2014-12-17: Delivered to California Lockbox 2015-12-15: Delivered to Phoenix Lockbox
2013-03-06: Interview 2014-12-19: 1 I-751 + 3 Biometrics Fees debited from our account 2015-12-16: Fees charged to Credit Card
2013-03-08: Visas in-hand 2014-12-22: Received NOA1 by mail. Receipt Date: 2014-12-17 2015-12-17: NOA
2013-03-12: Paid USCIS Immigrant Fee 2014-12-24: Received Biometrics Appointment Letter 2016-01-02: Biometrics Letter 2016-01-11: Biometrics
2013-03-14: POE 2015-01-06: Biometrics 2016-02-15: In Line for Interview 2016-02-19: Letter
2013-03-25: SSNs arrived 2015-05-27: Approved 2016-03-22: Interview
2013-04-01: Green Cards arrived 2015-06-03: New Green Cards arrived 2016-04-15: Oath Ceremony

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The only item I will add, as I agree with KDH and Hikergirl in their thoughts, is to keep in mind that you will need to go to the consulate in Montreal in order to complete your interview process if you go the CR1 route. Will you have that flexibility in your work in Japan to be able to just fly out to Canada to do your interview when the time comes? We don't get to pick our date, they are assigned to us. Just something else to keep in mind as it sounds like you've already got a very complicated set of plans on the go!

If he’s legally working/residing in Japan he will interview in Japan. The I-130 would have Toyko where we put Montreal.

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If he’s legally working/residing in Japan he will interview in Japan. The I-130 would have Toyko where we put Montreal.

OH GOOD! I'm glad I was wrong on that. I thought OP would have to come back to Canada for interview. That's great news! Just ignore me!


USCIS - 40 DAYS
2012-10-30: FedEx delivered I-130 to Chicago Lockbox Mail Room
2012-11-01: NOA1 by email - MSC
2012-11-02: $420 (x3) debited from our account
2012-11-05: NOA1 hard copies received, Priority Date 2012-10-30
2012-12-11: NOA2


NVC - 26 DAYS
2013-01-02: Rec'd case#, IIN, BIN & OPTIN emails for EP sent
2013-01-03: Submitted DS-261 (x3)
2013-01-07: AOS bills invoiced and paid & OPTIN for EP accepted for each of us
2013-01-08: AOS bills appear as paid & AOS packages sent by email
2013-01-08: IV bill invoiced & paid (kids' only)
2013-01-09: IV bill appears as paid (kids' only)
2013-01-09: IV Package emailed & DS-260 submitted online (kids only)
2013-01-11: AOS received -notified by email
2013-01-11: IV bill invoiced & paid (for me)
2013-01-14: IV bill appears as paid (for me)
2013-01-14: IV Supporting Docs received for kids - notified by email
2013-01-14: IV Package emailed & DS-260 submitted online (me only)
2013-01-18: IV Supporting Docs received for me - notified by email
2013-01-18: Son#1 CASE COMPLETE - Son#2 checklist - saying $ on I-864 don't match tax return (but they do)-resubmitted
2013-01-23: AOS 2nd submission for Son #2 received - notified by email
2013-01-25: My CASE COMPLETE
2013-01-28: ALL 3 OF OUR CASES ARE NOW COMPLETE
2013-02-06: Packet 4 Received by email

MEDICAL ~ CONSULATE ~ POE REMOVAL OF CONDITIONS - 160 DAYS NATURALIZATION
2013-02-13: Medicals 2014-12-17: Delivered to California Lockbox 2015-12-15: Delivered to Phoenix Lockbox
2013-03-06: Interview 2014-12-19: 1 I-751 + 3 Biometrics Fees debited from our account 2015-12-16: Fees charged to Credit Card
2013-03-08: Visas in-hand 2014-12-22: Received NOA1 by mail. Receipt Date: 2014-12-17 2015-12-17: NOA
2013-03-12: Paid USCIS Immigrant Fee 2014-12-24: Received Biometrics Appointment Letter 2016-01-02: Biometrics Letter 2016-01-11: Biometrics
2013-03-14: POE 2015-01-06: Biometrics 2016-02-15: In Line for Interview 2016-02-19: Letter
2013-03-25: SSNs arrived 2015-05-27: Approved 2016-03-22: Interview
2013-04-01: Green Cards arrived 2015-06-03: New Green Cards arrived 2016-04-15: Oath Ceremony

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Hey everyone!

Thanks for the endless insight!

You really know your stuff and I like you so much more than the lawyers who charge $450 an hour! :luv:

So it checks out, you can no longer file for DFC in Japan :crying:

The nice thing about being an English teacher is that you can choose your next contract and country:

Perhaps a country that has an International Immigration Office, such as South Korea, China, Mexico or Peru. *Thanks for the list, hikergirl :thumbs:

Does anyone see a problem with this:

1) Find a job now in (for example) Peru that would begin in June-August. Get work contracts signed and plane tickets booked.

2) Enter the US in May on a tourist visa, with contracts and plain tickets to prove I have no intention to file for immigration in the US.

3) Get married and celebrate like these dancing fools here :dance::dance:

4) Go to work my contract in (for example) Peru.

5) After living there for 6 month, file my DFC, get my visa

6) Finish contract, return to America and start a new life.

Have I missed something? Is there a fatal flaw to this plan?

My fiancee is already cranky that we can't just go to America now, so I don't want to head in this direction unless it could work out... :blush:

Otherwise, the best route sounds like KDH/hikergirl 's plan to get hitched in America on a tourist visa, with evidence of a new contract in Japan thereafter.

File I-130 for CR1 visa, work and live in Japan until the process is completed, then come into America with my visa.

How would I go about booking the interview in Tokyo, instead of Montreal?

Thanks again for all the assistance!

I appreciate it like you wouldn't believe! :star:

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