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Hi, I am from the USA but have been living in Costa Rica for the past 10+ years. 7 years ago I met a local girl and we were married 4 years ago and we now have 3 and 4 year old boys. They both have US passports. I had to come back to the US for work and last month we got my wife a tourist Visa and made a trip to the USA so that she can check it out and see if she likes it and wants to live here or not.

In Texas, she got pulled into secondary and they threatened to send her back. I was told by another immigration officer in the airport that the red flag came when the first agent asked me how long she was planning to stay and I told them 3 to 6 months and that we weren't sure yet. When the secondary agent found out she had toddlers waiting for her in the airport with me he told her that he was going to let her in but that she "CANNOT file for residence while in the USA"!! According to her he was pretty adamant about it! He told her that if "she didn't want to get in trouble she should stay for 2 or 3 months (her Visa says she has 6 months?) and that she NEEDS to go back to Costa Rica to file the proper documents if she wants to come here to live with me".

I spoke with an immigration lawyer in Los Angeles and he told me that he recommends that she DOES go back to file the forms from her country because if the secondary immigration officer noted the record on what he told her, and she files the forms here anyway, that they could NOT approve her application AND rip up her tourist Visa and she would NEVER be allow in the USA again and that there is no appeal or anything ..its just over. Period.

So, we then heard of Infopass from another Costa Rican friend of her's that lives here and she told us that she was here for over 3 years, illegally!, and filed the forms here and they still gave her residence!! What??? So, we called Infopass and talked to an agent there and he told us "Yes. She can in fact file for change of status here as as long as she isn't here illegally and that the secondary airport agent in Texas might have just been trying to scare her".

So, as you can see, we are getting totally different information from an Immigration lawyer and an official Immigration agent! The only purpose it will server for her to go back to Costa Rica to fill out and submit those forms from there is that a family will be separated for several months and the airlines will get richer and we will get poorer ...and that's pretty much it!

My question is:
Is it possible that her application can be declined and, her tourist Visa revoked, if the secondary agent noted the record and she files for change of status here in the USA?? Is it safe for us to file the forms here?

This is very important because I cannot go back to Costa Rica because of work and if she cannot come here ...well, I have lost my family!! But I also hate to be separated from my wife and children for so long ...

Thanks in advance for any advice you can give ;)

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You can adjust. What CBP says has no bearing on USCIS, different agencies.


AOS for my husband
8/17/10: INTERVIEW DAY (day 123) APPROVED!!

ROC:
5/23/12: Sent out package
2/06/13: APPROVED!

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~~Moved to Adjustment of Status from Work, Student, & Tourist Visas, from Introducing our Members - As this is more of an Adjustment of Status question then a Intro and will get more responses here~~


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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So, we then heard of Infopass from another Costa Rican friend of her's that lives here and she told us that she was here for over 3 years, illegally!, and filed the forms here and they still gave her residence!! What???
So, we called Infopass and talked to an agent there and he told us "Yes. She can in fact file for change of status here as as long as she isn't here illegally and that the secondary airport agent in Texas might have just been trying to scare her".

Bit odd because I was wondering how the friend adjusted, most unusual someone here illegally can do so.


“If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles. If you know yourself but not the enemy, for every victory gained you will also suffer a defeat. If you know neither the enemy nor yourself, you will succumb in every battle.”

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Hi Harpa, thanks for the fast reply! I take it that "CBP" are the airport agents? Thats strikes as a bit odd that they are different agencies that dont communicate with each other. They are both homeland security, right? And also odd that my "lawyer" would say that they do ...

So you are sayng tht she cannot be denied if she files everything from here and doesnt go back to Costa Rica for any part of the process?

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Hi Boiler, I think I left some info out there. She originally came here on a tourist visa, the 6 months expired and she was here illegally for 3 years and then went back to Costa Rica. She stayed there for a couple years, got another tourista visa (amazingly), came back, got married and filed everything from here.

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She overstayed, not illegal.

Sounds like there was some Misrep on the second visa, but her problem not yours.


“If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles. If you know yourself but not the enemy, for every victory gained you will also suffer a defeat. If you know neither the enemy nor yourself, you will succumb in every battle.”

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And also odd that my "lawyer" would say that they do ...

The lawyer is only thinking of how much money he'll make if he makes it seem more complicated than it really is


August 2000: We start e-mailing. I'm in Bosnia, she's in Florida

October 29th 2000: She sends me e-mail asking if I would marry her

October 29th 2000(5 seconds later): I say yes

November 2000: She sends me tickets to Orlando for when I get back

December 6th 2000: Return from Bos

December 11th 2000: Fly to Orlando, she meets me at airport

December 22nd 2000: I fly back to UK

January 3rd 2001: She flies to UK (Good times)

Mid February 2001: Pregnancy test Positive

Mid February 2001: She flies back to US

March 2001: Miscarriage, I fly to US on first flight I can get

May 2001: I leave US before my 90 days are up

June 2001: I fly back to US, stopped at airport for questioning as I had only just left

September 2001: Pregnancy test Positive again

September 2001: She falls sick, I make decision to stay to look after her as I am afraid I may have problems getting back in.

April 16th 2002: Our son is born, we start getting stuff together for his passport

March 6th 2003: We leave US for UK as family

Early April 2003: Family troubles make her return to US, I ask Embassy in London about possibilities of returning to US

April 16th 2003: London Embassy informs me that I will be banned from the Visa Waiver Program for 10 years, my little boys first birthday

June 13th 2006: I-129f sent

August 11th 2006: NOA1 Recieved

After our relationship breaks down she admits to me that she had never bothered to start the application process

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The lawyer is only thinking of how much money he'll make if he makes it seem more complicated than it really is

Sounds like it.


“If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles. If you know yourself but not the enemy, for every victory gained you will also suffer a defeat. If you know neither the enemy nor yourself, you will succumb in every battle.”

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Interesting. He told me that he see's it happening a lot ..that little weasel! lol-

So, so far im getting that everyone agree's that she doent have to go back to Costa Rica for the interview even if the airport immigration told her and noted the record? Harpa says it doesnt matter if they did or not and that it has no bearing because they are different agencies.

I actually just contacted an agency in FL (immigrationforless.com) about an hour ago and they told me the same thing. They said that they can file all the paperwork and everything for $700 but that it would be best for her to go back for the interview at the US Embassy in Costa Rica. They said that its possible as well. They told me that we can file here but she can travel back and forth as much as she likes and they recommended that she just fly back there to do the interview and come right back because it would look better for her if they did note the record.

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What? Lawyers are crazy.

People have successfully adjusted with "NO AOS" written by CBP in their passport. It's not legally binding.


AOS for my husband
8/17/10: INTERVIEW DAY (day 123) APPROVED!!

ROC:
5/23/12: Sent out package
2/06/13: APPROVED!

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They are not Lawyers, looks more like a Noatario?


“If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles. If you know yourself but not the enemy, for every victory gained you will also suffer a defeat. If you know neither the enemy nor yourself, you will succumb in every battle.”

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Yes. I think they are just a service that files all the documents for you. Here's what they sent me:

=======================

Our procedures includes the 2 packages sent the USCIS and the NVC processing too, along with the preparation for the interview at the U.S Embassy. It includes everything for your wife to get her Spousal Visa.
For the Citizenship, your wife needs to wait 3 more years, to be eligible to apply. (Only green card holders of 3 years that are still married to their U.S Citizen sponsor/husband are eligible)
======================

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You provide the information, they fill in the forms.

You fill in the forms and save $700


“If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles. If you know yourself but not the enemy, for every victory gained you will also suffer a defeat. If you know neither the enemy nor yourself, you will succumb in every battle.”

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