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Hurray! Got my K-1 Visa in the mail today (finally)! But I have some questions...

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Hello all,

After almost thinking that the consulate had lost my visa and passport in the mail (it took forever and they actually gave me a tracking number that doesn't exist), it all finally arrived today.

First of all, I'm afraid I'll have to rant a bit. Granted, I am VERY happy that the documents are here but I have never seen important personal documents handled this way with this much neglect. It's a miracle they made it to my house in one piece.

First of all, it had been raining and the old, battered paper envelope that everything was sent in was quite wet and threatening to break.

Fortunately, everything on the inside was in reasonably okay condition. Contents: Two big, fat manila envelopes (again, old, used, and battered) with one corner open, slight dog ears on the corners. Not nearly as sturdy as the example envelopes I was shown at the consulate. I got two of those and they were full of papers. I know that I'm not supposed to open them (and I'm not going to), but they are almost bursting at the seams. We sent a lot of documents with our initial application. Could this be them? And why does the airport staff have to see all of that?

Besides that, there was a small envelope. And here's where it gets slightly problematic: I didn't see my passport in the large envelope that everything came in and because I was expecting it to be somewhat protected, I thought it was in the small envelope (which I at first only saw the back of). So, very carefully, I started to open it by lifting away about 10% of the seal. Fortunately, I had that little bit of paranoia which made me look at the opposite side, then and saw the red sticker that these were my medical results and not to open under any circumstances. So 90% of the seal was still intact in the back and I quickly pushed down the little corner I opened (no way of peeking inside even if I wanted to) and it stuck perfectly to the rest of the envelope like it did before making it seem unopened.

Of course now I'm in full paranoia mode and worried that anyone might notice my mistake and invalidate my visa, even though I think it's perfectly unnoticeable that the envelope has ever been partially opened in the first place. That's unless they dust for fingerprints around the seal or something crazy like that...(somebody please tell me they don't). But does it pose a real problem?

Finally, I did find my passport. In the bottom of the soggy, battered outside envelope, open to the all-paper K-1 visa page.

Now, it was fortunately not damaged, but with the way these things were handled, it easily could have been. Not to mention, a huge thunderstorm with lots of rain is predicted for this afternoon. Fortunately, this all got delivered now.

Again, my apologies for the long rant but it does not seem fair at all that we have to make 150% sure that we get those documents to the person at the airport without a scratch and the consulate can basically treat them however they want. Have now put everything into a large plastic covering to protect it on the way there.

Anyways, thank you for bearing with me.

A few more questions:

- On my visa, it reads "Validity shortened due to medical". What does that usually mean? My medical was 2 days before the interview but it did not seem to delay the visa by much. Or does it refer to a medical that I will still have to go to? The issue date on the visa reads: December 24th (not true, it wasn't even in the mail then) and expiration date: June 15th, 2015.
- Will I need to fill out a special form at my departure airport here in Germany (it won't be a direct flight, probably a stop-over in Iceland) or on the plane because of my K-1 visa? Do I need to tell my local airport staff about it?
- When I arrive in the US, what will the immigrations people at the airport need from me besides the whole visa package (passport with visa, two big manila envelopes with documents/evidence/whatever is in there, medical in envelope, x-ray data on CD-R)? Do they need some sort of proof of finances? If yes, how much do I have to prove? Can it be bank statements from my parents' account (since I will have to get rid of my own)? My fiance's account? Do they accept it if I just have an international credit card with me or cash?
- How much of an interview do they usually do at the airport? How long can it take and what kinds of questions do they ask?

Thank you guys, so, so much in advance!

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The validity message on your visa just refers to the validity period of your visa. Nothing to worry about. Just make sure you enter the US by the expiration date on your K-1 visa.

You shouldn't have to fill out any special forms at your departure airport, no different than if you took any other international flight. On your flight to the US, you will fill out a US customs form.

When you arrive at your POE in the US, you only need to hand in the do-not-open envelope and give them your passport. The do-not-open envelope is the one that has the corner tear in it. Depending on your POE, you can be interviewed right at the immigration counter, or you can be taken to a smaller waiting room and have a little interview in an immigration officer's office. The medical stuff is yours to keep. The x-ray CD is not needed, that is more of a souvenir for you.

They don't ask about finances, so no proof is required. The interview is usually very short, just a few questions. They take as long to interview you as they do to rifle through all your papers in the envelope you give them. When my wife went through her POE, they asked her:

  • Who is your fiancé?
  • When is your wedding?

Then he congratulated us on our upcoming wedding, and reminded us that we needed to file the adjustment of status after marriage.


K-1
NOA1: 04/08/2014; NOA2: 04/21/2014; Visa interview, approved: 07/15/2014; POE: 07/25/2014; Marriage: 09/05/2014

 

AOS

NOA1:  09/12/2014;  Biometrics:  10/06/2014;  EAD/AP Received:  11/26/2014;

Interview Waiver Letter:  01/02/2015;  RFE:  07/09/2015;

Permanent Residency Granted:  07/27/2015;  Green card Received:  08/22/2015

 

ROC

05/23/2017 -- Mailed ROC application

05/24/2017 -- NOA1 date

05/30/2017 -- NOA1 received in the mail

06/05/2017 -- Biometrics letter received

06/13/2017 -- Biometrics appointment

09/05/2018 -- Approved without interview!

09/13/2018 -- 10 Yr Green card Received

 

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~Moved from K1 Process to Working & Traveling During US Immigration Forum~

~Inquiry POE processes~


Completed: K1/K2 (271 days) - AOS/EAD/AP (134 days) - ROC (279 days)

> Almost 2 years of our lives involved with the USCIS/DOS "shuffle" & worth every second of it ! <

"Si vis amari, ama" - Seneca

_______________________

:idea: Read more, post less.... Google can be your friend ! :idea:

Prior apologies if I can explain it to you, but I can't understand it for you.

Keep your timeline current: http://www.visajourney.com/timeline/

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No worries.

My visa also says "shortened due to medical" because I got my medical done 3 weeks before the interview. Your visa could technically have been issued/printed on Dec 24 because the consulate in Frankfurt is not closed on that day (yeah they actually work, I just looked up their holiday schedule - I was surprised, too). But my envelopes had dog ears (inside and outside) as well.

You just need to fill out the US customs form before entering, that's all. All the CPB officer asked me was what my husband does for a living, what kind of stuff I was bringing with me into the US (if any cigarettes, coffee, etc.), if his address was still current and how much money I was carrying with me. Nothing too serious. They might ask you when you intend to get married ;)


 

 

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Hello all,

After almost thinking that the consulate had lost my visa and passport in the mail (it took forever and they actually gave me a tracking number that doesn't exist), it all finally arrived today.

First of all, I'm afraid I'll have to rant a bit. Granted, I am VERY happy that the documents are here but I have never seen important personal documents handled this way with this much neglect. It's a miracle they made it to my house in one piece.

First of all, it had been raining and the old, battered paper envelope that everything was sent in was quite wet and threatening to break.

Fortunately, everything on the inside was in reasonably okay condition. Contents: Two big, fat manila envelopes (again, old, used, and battered) with one corner open, slight dog ears on the corners. Not nearly as sturdy as the example envelopes I was shown at the consulate. I got two of those and they were full of papers. I know that I'm not supposed to open them (and I'm not going to), but they are almost bursting at the seams. We sent a lot of documents with our initial application. Could this be them? And why does the airport staff have to see all of that?

Besides that, there was a small envelope. And here's where it gets slightly problematic: I didn't see my passport in the large envelope that everything came in and because I was expecting it to be somewhat protected, I thought it was in the small envelope (which I at first only saw the back of). So, very carefully, I started to open it by lifting away about 10% of the seal. Fortunately, I had that little bit of paranoia which made me look at the opposite side, then and saw the red sticker that these were my medical results and not to open under any circumstances. So 90% of the seal was still intact in the back and I quickly pushed down the little corner I opened (no way of peeking inside even if I wanted to) and it stuck perfectly to the rest of the envelope like it did before making it seem unopened.

Of course now I'm in full paranoia mode and worried that anyone might notice my mistake and invalidate my visa, even though I think it's perfectly unnoticeable that the envelope has ever been partially opened in the first place. That's unless they dust for fingerprints around the seal or something crazy like that...(somebody please tell me they don't). But does it pose a real problem?

Finally, I did find my passport. In the bottom of the soggy, battered outside envelope, open to the all-paper K-1 visa page.

Now, it was fortunately not damaged, but with the way these things were handled, it easily could have been. Not to mention, a huge thunderstorm with lots of rain is predicted for this afternoon. Fortunately, this all got delivered now.

Again, my apologies for the long rant but it does not seem fair at all that we have to make 150% sure that we get those documents to the person at the airport without a scratch and the consulate can basically treat them however they want. Have now put everything into a large plastic covering to protect it on the way there.

Anyways, thank you for bearing with me.

A few more questions:

- On my visa, it reads "Validity shortened due to medical". What does that usually mean? My medical was 2 days before the interview but it did not seem to delay the visa by much. Or does it refer to a medical that I will still have to go to? The issue date on the visa reads: December 24th (not true, it wasn't even in the mail then) and expiration date: June 15th, 2015.

- Will I need to fill out a special form at my departure airport here in Germany (it won't be a direct flight, probably a stop-over in Iceland) or on the plane because of my K-1 visa? Do I need to tell my local airport staff about it?

- When I arrive in the US, what will the immigrations people at the airport need from me besides the whole visa package (passport with visa, two big manila envelopes with documents/evidence/whatever is in there, medical in envelope, x-ray data on CD-R)? Do they need some sort of proof of finances? If yes, how much do I have to prove? Can it be bank statements from my parents' account (since I will have to get rid of my own)? My fiance's account? Do they accept it if I just have an international credit card with me or cash?

- How much of an interview do they usually do at the airport? How long can it take and what kinds of questions do they ask?

Thank you guys, so, so much in advance!

Congrats on getting your Visa!


ROC Timeline!

Service Center : California Service Center

NOA1 : 2017-09-01

Biometrics : 2017-09-28

 

AOS Timeline!

Marriage : 2015-01-10

AOS/EAD/AP NOA1 : 2015-01-20

Biometrics : 2015-02-17

EAD/AP Approved : 2015-03-17

EAD/AP Card Received : 2015-03-27

NPIW : 2015-06-11

AOS Approved : 2015-11-24

GC Received : 2015-12-01

 

K-1 Visa Timeline!

Service Center : Texas Service Center

Transferred? No

Consulate : Frankfurt, Germany

I-129F NOA1 : 2014-03-11

I-129F NOA2 : 2014-08-12

Consulate Received : 2014-09-15

Interview Date : 2014-11-13

Interview Result : Approved

Visa Received : 2014-11-15

US Entry : 2014-12-31

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