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Lawyer and ISCIS errors, big delays

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Here is the quick and dirty on my I-129f Petition sent at the end of October 2006. I committed to working with an immigration lawyer before I discovered this website. I wanted to work with a lawyer because I wanted no mistakes and the most rapid processing time possible. After a month I had heard nothing from my lawyer despite calling to ask what was being done, this went on through January. I was told that a postal receipt was received for the petition in October but nothing more. Finally, at the end of January we received a notice that I had sent the wrong money amount $190 instead of $170 (my lawyer didn’t notice the error).

At this point in time we are too far along to ditch the lawyer so I am monitoring everything carefully.

So, we immediately sent in the correct amount and received back the FIRST I-797! We are now three months behind schedule!! I protested to my lawyer and a letter was sent asking that, due to the error (no notification of incorrect/missing documents or fee, back in Ocotber when my papers were received) that my case should be expedited. A few days later I received this at my email address.

From : U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services

You are subscribed to USCIS.gov Home Page for U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services. This information has recently been updated, and is now available.

I just received a second one this morning. Neither of these messages showed updated documentation when I checked on their website, only my first I-797.

Are these “touches”? BTW, my lawyer has 10 years of experience but knows nothing of "touches", RFE's, or NOA's, or visajourney.com. She did express interest in what visajourney had to say. Gracias

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:(

Here is the quick and dirty on my I-129f Petition sent at the end of October 2006. I committed to working with an immigration lawyer before I discovered this website. I wanted to work with a lawyer because I wanted no mistakes and the most rapid processing time possible. After a month I had heard nothing from my lawyer despite calling to ask what was being done, this went on through January. I was told that a postal receipt was received for the petition in October but nothing more. Finally, at the end of January we received a notice that I had sent the wrong money amount $190 instead of $170 (my lawyer didn’t notice the error).

At this point in time we are too far along to ditch the lawyer so I am monitoring everything carefully.

So, we immediately sent in the correct amount and received back the FIRST I-797! We are now three months behind schedule!! I protested to my lawyer and a letter was sent asking that, due to the error (no notification of incorrect/missing documents or fee, back in Ocotber when my papers were received) that my case should be expedited. A few days later I received this at my email address.

From : U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services

You are subscribed to USCIS.gov Home Page for U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services. This information has recently been updated, and is now available.

I just received a second one this morning. Neither of these messages showed updated documentation when I checked on their website, only my first I-797.

Are these “touches”? BTW, my lawyer has 10 years of experience but knows nothing of "touches", RFE's, or NOA's, or visajourney.com. She did express interest in what visajourney had to say. Gracias

Yes. It's too bad you did not find this site first before hiring your lawyer. Most lawyers are horrible and have not a care in the world for their clients. Only your MONEY. :ranting:

I hope you can find a way of getting things back in order. This site is great! And so are the people! We're all working toward the same goal. Getting our loved one(s) here to be with us. Best of luck to you!


Joseph

us.jpgKarolina

AOS application received Chicago - 11/12/2007

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I was about to hire a lawyer as well but a friend of mine who used this site recommended that site and THNK GOD i did not go through a lawyer cause it seems like there are only extra unneeded delays with them. I personally don't understand why they are charing crazy fees for those documents when it takes us absolutely about an hour to fill it out on our own and it's FREE. Go figure :wacko:

Good luck and hope for a speedy journey :) Keep your head up!

Edited by NYGirl

12/14/09 - I-751 mailed

12/23/09 - Check cashed

12/28/09 - NOA1 (dated 12/21/09)

01/03/10 - I-797 NOA received for biometrics appt

01/26/10 - Biometrics appt.

01/27/10 - Touch

04/29/10 - Approved

reminder for myself: apply for citizenship in november 2010

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I protested to my lawyer and a letter was sent asking that, due to the error (no notification of incorrect/missing documents or fee, back in Ocotber when my papers were received) that my case should be expedited. A few days later I received this at my email address.

From : U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services

You are subscribed to USCIS.gov Home Page for U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services. This information has recently been updated, and is now available.

What I think your attorney did, is set up an online account for you, so that you could monitor yourself what is going on with the case (what a lazy lawyer!!!) If you go to the below link, you can log on & see if anyone "touched" your file... meaning if anyone did anything with it.

https://egov.immigration.gov/cris/jsps/index.jsp

Also, I dont think it took the USCIS 3 months to send back a notice about the overpayment, I think that would be the first thing they'd do.

And for the attorneys whole pull this type of stuff on their clients... I only wish they could feel what separation from a loved one for so long would feel like... maybe they'd move their asses quicker.


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I protested to my lawyer and a letter was sent asking that, due to the error (no notification of incorrect/missing documents or fee, back in Ocotber when my papers were received) that my case should be expedited.

Unfortunately, not a chance for expedited status....


YMMV

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I was going to get a lawyer for this process because like the OP I wanted NO mistakes and a case that would be processed as quick as possible.

Thank god I chose not to after realizing how much simpler(and cheaper) it could be if i just do a little research on everything myself. I looked online, and those lawyer fees were like at least 1000$+ That's insane imo considering I did everything myself and got things moving along pretty quickly myself!

Goodluck on the rest of your journey though :)

I figure, whatever the situation is that's really important to you, Google always always is one of the first places I go to, just because there's sooooooo much information on the internet from most likely people in the same situation/with the same goals as you. Plus there's forums for everything these days :D

/gets off soapbox......sorry for the rambling.


My timeline:

02 - 09 - 2007 - Sending off of my I-129F package

02 - 13 - 2007 - NOA1 Received

02 - 21 - 2007 - Touched!

03 - 01 - 2007 - NOA2 Received

03 - 02 - 2007 - Touched Again!

03 - 06 - 2007 - NVC Received

03 - 07 - 2007 - Was told by email I-129F will be forwarded to Sydney

03 - 08 - 2007 - I-129F picked up by DHL and on it's way to Sydney!!

03 - 12 - 2007 - Sydney Consulate received packet! From DHL: 1:48 pm Shipment delivered WOOT

03 - 19 - 2007 - Packet Three is sent off!

03 - 20 - 2007 - Corey goes to get his fingerprints/police check completed. Now we wait for the investigation and then I can be assured he's not a criminal =]

03 - 21 - 2007 - Corey gets Pkt 3 via Registered Mail

03 - 22 - 2007 - Sent Corey a copy of all the documents and the notarized I-134.. hopefully everything arrives safely!

04 - 17 - 2007 - Corey's Medical Examination.. Let's hope everything goes great!

05 - 01 - 2007 - Corey's Medical Rescheduled to this date because doctor was away!

05 - 04 - 2007 - Corey's Initial Interview date! (We only had ONE week's notice!)

05 - 30 - 2007 - Corey's Rescheduled Interview date because there was no time for the initial one

____________________________________________

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To clarify my original post;

My lawyer is a friend in my community and only charged me $400. My I-129F petition sat on the shelf for three months and no one sent an notice that anything was wrong with it. When they finally did, we corrected the problem and the NOA1 was promply sent. In studying the timelines on Visajourney it appears that it is fairly standard that the NOA1 is sent in the first few days after all your petition documents are in order. If they are not you are sent a notice stating something is missing. This was not done in my case until 3 months after my petition was received.

When my NOA1 was finally sent I opened an account at USCIS and have been checking it daily. So far, the only information in my file is that on Feb 6 I was sent an I-797 Notice of Action (NOA1) which I have in hand.

However, since the NOA1 was received on Feb 6, I have received two emails saying that my account has been updated, although nothing new has been added. My original question was are these emails "touches"?

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To clarify my original post;

My lawyer is a friend in my community and only charged me $400. My I-129F petition sat on the shelf for three months and no one sent an notice that anything was wrong with it. When they finally did, we corrected the problem and the NOA1 was promply sent. In studying the timelines on Visajourney it appears that it is fairly standard that the NOA1 is sent in the first few days after all your petition documents are in order. If they are not you are sent a notice stating something is missing. This was not done in my case until 3 months after my petition was received.

When my NOA1 was finally sent I opened an account at USCIS and have been checking it daily. So far, the only information in my file is that on Feb 6 I was sent an I-797 Notice of Action (NOA1) which I have in hand.

However, since the NOA1 was received on Feb 6, I have received two emails saying that my account has been updated, although nothing new has been added. My original question was are these emails "touches"?

While your petition was received at the service center it was never accepted as the fee payment was incorrect. NOA1's are issued after a petition is received and accepted into the system. I agree with you that 3 mos. to return it to you is simply not right....

The subsequent updates to your online account without a change in status is in fact a "touch".


YMMV

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Yes. It's too bad you did not find this site first before hiring your lawyer. Most lawyers are horrible and have not a care in the world for their clients. Only your MONEY. :ranting:

I hope you can find a way of getting things back in order. This site is great! And so are the people! We're all working toward the same goal. Getting our loved one(s) here to be with us. Best of luck to you!

No, most lawyers DO care about their clients. What seems to go on in the immigration world is that most immigration attorneys specialize in helping companies get employee visas or help refugees or help people with far more complicated situations than most of us here face. So when someone comes and says can you help with a K series, the lawyer, figuring it can't be that hard since they are used to dealing with the system, takes the case. They may be immigration specialists, but they aren't necessarily K-visa specialists. They shouldnt' take the case, but there isn't necessarily malice on their part that causes the screw up.

That doesn't mean, however, that you don't still have rights. If you feel your lawyer was unduly neglectful or too inexperienced to have taken your case, you could file a complaint with the state bar in your state. Before that, you should speak to him/her calmly, explain the information you have found here, and ask for your money back in consideration of the delay that never should have been caused.

Note: lawyers who mess up and don't read up on basic information deserve to be called out so they learn or at least hopefully don't take another case they aren't prepared for again. You have to stand up for yourself and your rights as a client. Also, never mistake a lawyer for a magician, a seer, or anyone more powerful than he or she really is. Lawyers have no special entre with the government - there's no magic hotline they can call that speeds things up. We don't know everything - as much as we'd like to. You SHOULD be able to rely on their possessing the basic knowledge of the process necessary to helping you competently. You should NOT retain an attorney because you think they have some kind of special inside track that you can't access.

Edited by TimsDaisy

I-129F/K1

1-12-07 mailed to CSC

1-22-07 DHS cashes the I-129F check

1-23-07 NOA1 Notice Date

1-26-07 NOA1 arrives in the post

4-25-07 Touched!

4-26-07 Touched again!

5-3-07 NOA2!!! Two approval emails received at 11:36am

5-10-07 Arrived at NVC/5-14-07 Left NVC - London-bound!

5-17-07??? London receives?

5-20-07 Packet 3 mailed

5-26-07 Packet 3 received

5-29-07 Packet 3 returned, few days later than planned due to bank holiday weekend

6-06-07 Medical in London (called to schedule on May 29)

6-11-07 "Medical in file" at Embassy

6-14-07 Resent packet 3 to Embassy after hearing nothing about first try

6-22-07 DOS says "applicant now eligible for interview," ie: they enter p3 into their system

6-25-07 DOS says interview date is August 21

6-28-07 Help from our congressional representative gives us new interview date: July 6

7-06-07 Interview at 9:00 am at the London Embassy - Approved.

7-16-07 Visa delivered after 'security checks' completed

I-129F approved in 111 days; Interview 174 days from filing

Handy numbers:

NVC: (603) 334-0700 - press 1, 5; US State Department: (202) 663-1225 - press 1, 0

*Be afraid or be informed - the choice is yours.*

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There are so many stories where these immigration lawyers just dont take the time to pay attention to the simple steps of the process. She doesnt know what a "touch" or an RFE is? And she calls herself an immigration lawyer? That's just scary. The reason it works for so many people who file on their own is because we're watching the process like a hawk instead of throwing a bunch of information into the hands of a lawyer who never tells you what an NOA is! My advice for uncomplicated cases is to always do it yourself...you'll save time and money. You should light a fire under her ###.

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There are so many stories where these immigration lawyers just dont take the time to pay attention to the simple steps of the process. She doesnt know what a "touch" or an RFE is? And she calls herself an immigration lawyer? That's just scary.

Why should a lawyer know what the newsgroups/discussion fora use for shorthand terms? These are not official CIS terms, they are nicknames made up by the early online note-comparers that were the precursor to these groups. See the K-1 FAQ for more detail, but "NOA" "RFE" and "touch" are not terms you should expect a lawyer, CIS worker or anyone else to use/know.


Now That You Are A Permanent Resident

How Do I Remove The Conditions On Permanent Residence Based On Marriage?

Welcome to the United States: A Guide For New Immigrants

Yes, even this last one.. stuff in there that not even your USC knows.....

Here are more links that I love:

Arriving in America, The POE Drill

Dual Citizenship FAQ

Other Fora I Post To:

alt.visa.us.marriage-based http://britishexpats.com/ and www.***removed***.com

censored link = *family based immigration* website

Inertia. Is that the Greek god of 'can't be bothered'?

Met, married, immigrated, naturalized.

I-130 filed Aug02

USC Jul06

No Deje Piedras Sobre El Pavimento!

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There are so many stories where these immigration lawyers just dont take the time to pay attention to the simple steps of the process. She doesnt know what a "touch" or an RFE is? And she calls herself an immigration lawyer? That's just scary.

Why should a lawyer know what the newsgroups/discussion fora use for shorthand terms? These are not official CIS terms, they are nicknames made up by the early online note-comparers that were the precursor to these groups. See the K-1 FAQ for more detail, but "NOA" "RFE" and "touch" are not terms you should expect a lawyer, CIS worker or anyone else to use/know.

You're right.

A lawyer should know the process before taking a case. That goes for anything in any type of law. For instance, just because I'm a lawyer doesn't mean I can help you with your bankruptcy, your divorce, your visa (well, perhaps now I could - but just your fiance visa, NOT your H1-B, see what I mean?), or your murder trial. That's like expecting all doctors to know how to perform brain surgery or better yet, to expect a dentist to be able to fix your boobs - hey, all parts of the body right? No, doesn't really work like that, does it.

If you feel you might need professional assistance with your process, the first place to turn is to the immigration case worker in your congressman/woman's or Senator's office. He or she has likely had experience with THIS KIND of visa, not just another kind. If you aren't satisfied with the answers, find someone else or try an attorney.

But meauxna is right here: the acronyms we use here aren't universal. I was speaking with my congressional caseworker friend yesterday and learned new lingo common in her office, while translating some of the stuff we use here. Hers, by the way, would be the correct kind since she works for the government - she speaks USCIS language fluently. Her comment when I was showing her this site: "I have always wondered where people get their information."

So take what's useful and use it, but don't expect the community here to get it right every time. You should be able to expect more from a lawyer - but again, at the end of the day, the K visa applications (as with all government forms) are written to be used by lay people. Lawyers can do more harm than good. And lawyers whose experience is SOLELY or MOSTLY with work-related visas are not necessarily going to know about THIS process.

Caveat emptor.


I-129F/K1

1-12-07 mailed to CSC

1-22-07 DHS cashes the I-129F check

1-23-07 NOA1 Notice Date

1-26-07 NOA1 arrives in the post

4-25-07 Touched!

4-26-07 Touched again!

5-3-07 NOA2!!! Two approval emails received at 11:36am

5-10-07 Arrived at NVC/5-14-07 Left NVC - London-bound!

5-17-07??? London receives?

5-20-07 Packet 3 mailed

5-26-07 Packet 3 received

5-29-07 Packet 3 returned, few days later than planned due to bank holiday weekend

6-06-07 Medical in London (called to schedule on May 29)

6-11-07 "Medical in file" at Embassy

6-14-07 Resent packet 3 to Embassy after hearing nothing about first try

6-22-07 DOS says "applicant now eligible for interview," ie: they enter p3 into their system

6-25-07 DOS says interview date is August 21

6-28-07 Help from our congressional representative gives us new interview date: July 6

7-06-07 Interview at 9:00 am at the London Embassy - Approved.

7-16-07 Visa delivered after 'security checks' completed

I-129F approved in 111 days; Interview 174 days from filing

Handy numbers:

NVC: (603) 334-0700 - press 1, 5; US State Department: (202) 663-1225 - press 1, 0

*Be afraid or be informed - the choice is yours.*

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Thanks fwaguy for answering my question about "touches". I hope that you are not right about having at least some partial correction of the error on the part of uSCIS. I did call the USCIS the other day and talked to someone and they said give it a month and call again.

Yes, my lawyer is not a genius and I am not her only case. I don't know what type of cases she usually handles but she admitted that fiance visas are not something she does alot of. She did mention that fiance visas from Mexico are not common for her as most Mexicans just cross the border illegally and then marry or whatever bypassing the whole K-1 scene. Since my fiance was able to obtain her Tourist Visa she is with me now. We did consider getting married and petitioning for resident status as this would have been easier and faster. However, it would exclude my fiance's children and we want them in the US ASAP, not a year from now. Getting her children to the USA is where our anguish lies. There are some complications that make it best for my fiance to stay with me right now.

I want to get my timeline posted but it doesn't seem like anything is measurable at this point.

Thank you for all your help and good wishes. MM

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Thanks fwaguy for answering my question about "touches". I hope that you are not right about having at least some partial correction of the error on the part of uSCIS. I did call the USCIS the other day and talked to someone and they said give it a month and call again.

I am often wrong and I hope I am here in this situation as well....


YMMV

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I am curious how horrible lawyers dealing with Immigration really are. Obviously a lot of people on here have had bad experiences, but if you had a good lawyer who kept you up to date on everything and you arent obsessive compulsive about the procedure, would you have found VJ and joined? Sorry all, taking my stats class right now so I have my mind on cause hehe!!!


Timeline

AOS

Mailed AOS, EAD and AP Sept 11 '07

Recieved NOA1's for all Sept 23 or 24 '07

Bio appt. Oct. 24 '07

EAD/AP approved Nov 26 '07

Got the AP Dec. 3 '07

AOS interview Feb 7th (5 days after the 1 year anniversary of our K1 NOA1!

Stuck in FBI name checks...

Got the GC July '08

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