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saralina

Moving back to Europe

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Hi guys,

 

First a short summary of our journey:

I entered the US on a K-1 Visa in September, We got married end of October and sent the AOS first thing in November. I had my biometrics (for the work permit and the travel permit) in December. Now we are waiting.

My social security number was denied. "Because my status is changing". So I can't get insurance. 

 

Now both my husband and I feel that it would be better for us to live in Austria. I can work as a doctor there and it's a lot easier for him to get a permanent resident equivalent.

 

Will we loose everything we did so far (and the money we spent)? 
If we ever decide to move back, will we have to start over?

 

I am aware that it can take years to get a green card. We don't want to wait that long before we move. 

 

Any experience with that? Tips? Important things we have to do?

 

Thank you


Engaged: 2016-04-17

I-129 Sent: 2016-04-20

NOA 1: 2016-05-10

NOA 2: 2016-07-13

Visited him in US: 2016-07 until 2016-09

Interview Date: 2016-09-12

Result: Approved

Visa received: 2016-09-14

US Entry: 2016-09-21

Wedding: 2016-10-25

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If you are leaving then the US process is pretty irrelevant. How long will it be before you go?

 

You can get insurance without a SSN btw.


“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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We are planning on leaving in April. 

 

You can? That's news to me. So far wherever we looked they asked for a SSN and you coulnd't go on without it. 


Engaged: 2016-04-17

I-129 Sent: 2016-04-20

NOA 1: 2016-05-10

NOA 2: 2016-07-13

Visited him in US: 2016-07 until 2016-09

Interview Date: 2016-09-12

Result: Approved

Visa received: 2016-09-14

US Entry: 2016-09-21

Wedding: 2016-10-25

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They need a unique identifying number, SSN is the most common.


“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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If you plan to live outside of US, the green card is pointless since it's a permanent RESIDENT card for the US.  If you plan to live elsewhere, cancel your AOS and go.  If you get a green card and stay outside the US more than 6 moths out of the year, you will lose it anyway. 

 

Yes, you will have to start all over again to come back to the US.

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~~Moved to AOS Family, from K1 P&P- As the OP has started the AOS process. Even though they are thinking on leaving the US, some of the AOS question may come up.~~

 

Mod hat off

 

Since your 90 days are past you will have to wait for the EAD to get your ssc. There's been many members that are told they cannot get insurance without their ssc. Many of us did get insurance without the card. Either the person you spoke with has no clue or cannot be bothered. 

 

Also for the average AOS it does not take years to get the Green card. Even if it did take longer then the norm, you would have your EAD so working is available. Not sure what you would need to do to be a doctor here but I would think it was something the two of you have thought about.

 

You can also apply for re-entry permit if you think there is a chance you will be back. Many times ppl leave just to realize later that they made a mistake.  

Just things to think about. 

Edited by Ontarkie

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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Yes you would lose all the money and time you have invested in the immigration process. Should you leave now and return to the US later you would need to apply for a CR1 visa, which can take a long time, even if you have had a K1 visa before.

 

Your EAD and AP should be approved around 90 days, the green card can be issued anywhere from 3 months to one year so if it were me I would just wait and then decide. 

 

Why can't you work as a doctor in the States? I am a physical therapist and I admit it was a pain in the butt to get my education credentialled to get my professional license, it took 18 months! Also I need to go through a whole process if I want to get licensed in another state, but it is not impossible. I know there is a big need for doctors anywhere so finding a job shouldn't be a problem if you get your license here. I think that for doctors and pharmacists it is not that hard to get a license as for other health professions, but that's hearsay.

 

I don't have a SSN yet, but I have insurance through my spouse's insurance. You can always get a private insurance or an international insurance (e.g. Alliance) for which you definitely don't need a SSN.

 

After Trump got elected my first response was to get back to Europe as well, but I didn't want all the trouble to have been for nothing. Building a new life in a new country is not easy,but it will be worth it in the end. 

 

Edited by glennw84

AOS from VWP

10/04/16: Package (I485, I130, I765, I131) sent to Chicago Lockbox via Priority USPS

10/05/16: NOA1 Package received

10/18/16: Hard copies received

10/26/16: Appointment letter for Biometrics

11/01/16: RFIE: birth certificate joint sponsor missing

11/08/16: Biometrics

11/22/16: RFIE received

12/14/16: I485 Case is ready to be scheduled for interview

12/19/16: Service request for I765 (day 76)

12/23/16: Letter in mail stating that I765 is within normal processing times

01/03/17: EAD card in production (day 91) later changed to Case Approved

01/03/17: I131 AP case approved

01/06/17: Card has been mailed (day 94)

01/11/17: Card in hand :jest: (day 99)

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My sister (USC) lives in Austria with her Austrian husband and she finds it extremely hard to live there. Even after 5+ years of being there and speaking fluent German, she just finds the people to be really hard to make friends with. She has also struggled to get a job there. Austrians seem to only respect Austrian universities degrees. It might be different if you're in a STEM field, maybe American degrees are more respect in that sphere?

 

So, I don't know what your husband's situation is, but if he hasn't lived in Austria before, despite the fact that the Aufenthaltstitel is pretty straightforward and easy to get compared to the US green card, there can be another set of issues which will make it hard to live there. There are a lot of things to think about, but since you've already come so far on the green card journey, why abandon it now? As the others have said, you'll lose everything and have to start over again from zero if you decide to head back to the States. It's a decision that you should consider with care.


03639.png                  

                  🇷🇺  ♥  CR-1 via DCF in Moscow! ♥  🇺🇸

Spoiler

26-Jul-2016: Married abroad :3
21-Dec-2016: I-130 filed at Embassy
29-Dec-2016: I-130 approved! Yay! 

17-Jan-2017: Case number received :]

21-Mar-2017: Medical Exam completed

24-Mar-2017: Interview - approved!

29-Mar-2017: CR-1 Visa received (via mail)

02-Apr-2017: USCIS Immigrant (GC) Fee paid

28-Jun-2017: Port of Entry @ PDX

21-Jul-2017: No SSN after three weeks; applied in person at the SSA

22-Jul-2017: GC arrived in the mail

31-Jul-2017: SSN arrived via mail, hurrah!

                     I-90 GC Replacment (for Erroneous GC)

Spoiler

22-Jul-2017: GC arrives in the mail – middle name is cut off 😕

01-Aug-2017: Sent in I-90 online via website

05-Aug-2017: Biometrics scheduled

23-Aug-2017: Biometrics done @ USCIS office; kept GC!

16-Jul-2018: RFE for supporting docs!! D:<

31-Jul-2018: USCIS Appointment at local field office..

22-Aug-2018: Mailed GC back to USCIS in response to RFE

29-Aug-2018: GC received by USCIS

17-Sept-2018: Received CORRECTED GC in the mail! Finally!!

 

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At what point in the process did  you apply for the SSN? You could have applied any time after arrival up until 14 days before the visa expired. If you didn't (we didn't), then you need to wait for EAD/AP. Could that be what they mean?

 

But you CAN get health insurance without an SSN. My husband was added to my family plan within a week, without an SSN. I think we gave them his A-number? If your husband has insurance through his employer and you're eligible to be added, have him talk to the benefits managers there. If you're trying to buy through the exchange, your Notice of Action for AOS *should* be sufficient but the K1/AOS process is really unique and it is possible they missed it. But, try. You may need to see someone in person, this might not be possible online. If for whatever reason you're left out, your EAD DOES make you eligible and you'll get that soon. Or  you can go the private route which does not need an SSN or any immigration information at all.

 

If you leave now, you completely abandon the process, no refunds, nothing and if you want to return to live, you'll need a spouse visa. Same if you leave after getting your green card (which takes about 6 months, not "years"). If you leave the US as a green card holder for more than 6 months,  you've abandoned your green card and will need a visa to return. Not sure if/how this would effect your ability to use ESTA but I'd look into that too. Citizenship (which does take years) is what gives you the ability to come and go as you please and stay away for as long as you like.

 

I understand that each case is unique, but it seems pretty short-sighted to me to change your mind on what country you're going to live in over a few weeks of being uninsured (after how many weeks already?)


Marriage/ AOS Timeline:

23 Dec 2015: Legal marriage

23 Jan 2016: Wedding!

23 Jan 2016: "Blizzard of the Century", wedding canceled/rescheduled (thank goodness we were legally married first or we'd have had a big problem!) :sleepy:

24 Jan 2016: Small "civil ceremony" with friends and family who were snowed in with us. December was a bit of a secret and people had traveled internationally and knew we *had* to get married that weekend, and our December legal marriage was nothing but signing a piece of paper at our priest's kitchen table, without any sort of vows etc so this was actually a very special (if not legally significant) day. (L)

16 Apr 2016: Filed for AOS and EAD/AP (We delayed a bit-- no big rush, enjoying the USCIS break)

23 Apr 2016: Wedding! Finally! :luv:

27 Apr 2016: Electronic NOA1 for all 3 :dancing:
29 Apr 2016: NOA1 Hardcopy for all 3
29 Jul 2016: Online service request for late EAD (Day 104)
29 Jul 2016: EAD/AP Approved ~3 hours after online service request
04 Aug 2016: RFE for Green Card (requested medicals/ vaccination record. They already have it). :ranting:
05 Aug 2016: EAD/AP Combo Card arrived! (Day 111)
08 Aug 2016: Congressional constituent request to get guidance on the RFE. Hoping they see they have the form and approve!

K-1 Visa Timeline:

PLEASE NOTE. This timeline was during the period of time when TSC was working on I-129fs and had a huge backlog. The average processing time was 210+ days. This is in no way predictive of your own timeline if you filed during or after April 2015, unless CSC develops a backlog. A backlog is anything above the 5-month goal time listed on USCIS's site

14 Feb 2015: Mailed I-129f to Dallas Lockbox. (L) (Most expensive Valentine's card I've ever sent!)

17 Feb 2015: NOA1 "Received Date"
19 Feb 2015: NOA1 Notice Date
08 Aug 2015: NOA2 email! :luv: (173 days from NOA1)

17 Aug 2015: Sent to NVC

?? Aug 2015: Arrived at NVC

25 Aug 2015: NVC Case # Assigned

31 Aug 2015: Left NVC for Consulate in San Jose

09 Sep 2015: Consulate received :dancing: (32 days from NOA2)

11 Sep 2015: Packet 3 emailed from embassy to me, the petitioner (34 days from NOA2).

18 Sep 2015: Medicals complete

21 Sep 2015: Packet 3 complete, my boss puts a temporary moratorium on all time off due to work emergency :clock:

02 Oct 2015: Work emergency clears up, interview scheduled (soonest available was 5 business days away--Columbus Day was in there)

13 Oct 2015: Interview

13 Oct 2015: VISA APPROVED :thumbs: (236 days from NOA1)

19 Oct 2015: Visa-in-hand

24 Oct 2015: POE !

15 Dec 2015: Fiance's mother's B-2 visa interview: APPROVED! So happy she will be at the wedding! :thumbs:

!

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21 hours ago, saralina said:

We are planning on leaving in April. 

 

You can? That's news to me. So far wherever we looked they asked for a SSN and you coulnd't go on without it. 

Yes, we got medical insurance for Noom without a SSN. 


K-1 Visa Timeline

2016.04.18 -- I-129F Received by USCIS

2016.04.20 -- I-129F NOA1

2016.06.29 -- NOA

2016.08.15 -- Bangkok Embassy received our case from NVC

2016.08.23 -- Packet 3 sent to Embassy in Bangkok

2016.08.26 -- Packet 4 email received from Embassy

2016.09.05 -- Medical exam @ 10:30 AM @ BNH

2016.09.07 -- Interview @ 7:30 AM...Visa approved

2016.09.09 -- Visa Received

2016.10.02 -- Entered USA (POE LAX)

2016.11.18...Our Wedding Day 

AOS Timeline

2016.12.30 -- AOS, EAD, and AP applications delivered to Chicago PO

2017.01.21 -- NOA1's received via USPS for I-485 (AOS),  I-131 (AP), and I-765 (EAD)

2017.02.24 -- Biometrics Appointment

2017.04.20 -- AOS & EAD approved; NOA2's received via USPS on 2017.04.23

2017.04.29 -- EAD & AP combo card received

2017.06.06 -- AOS approved!

2017.06.10 -- Green Card received

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14 hours ago, glennw84 said:

 

Why can't you work as a doctor in the States? I am a physical therapist and I admit it was a pain in the butt to get my education credentialled to get my professional license, it took 18 months! Also I need to go through a whole process if I want to get licensed in another state, but it is not impossible. I know there is a big need for doctors anywhere so finding a job shouldn't be a problem if you get your license here. I think that for doctors and pharmacists it is not that hard to get a license as for other health professions, but that's hearsay.

 

 

1

It's extremely complicated to become a doctor here if you went to a foreign medical school. There are 4 License examinations which are not only very hard but also expensive. And their focus is quite different from European schools. Not to mention the type of questions. I took the first of the 4 so far. You also can only apply for residency one a year and then wait months until you get matched to any hospital in the US and likely not the specialty you want to go into unless you aced the exams.

 

I guess if you are already a specialist it's easier. If you still need to go through residency? It's not... Sadly.


Engaged: 2016-04-17

I-129 Sent: 2016-04-20

NOA 1: 2016-05-10

NOA 2: 2016-07-13

Visited him in US: 2016-07 until 2016-09

Interview Date: 2016-09-12

Result: Approved

Visa received: 2016-09-14

US Entry: 2016-09-21

Wedding: 2016-10-25

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48 minutes ago, CatherineA said:

At what point in the process did  you apply for the SSN? You could have applied any time after arrival up until 14 days before the visa expired. If you didn't (we didn't), then you need to wait for EAD/AP. Could that be what they mean?

 

1

I applied a week after our wedding. So there were still at least 50 days of my visa left. It took them over 7 weeks to tell me that it was declined. 

 

Quote

But you CAN get health insurance without an SSN. My husband was added to my family plan within a week, without an SSN. I think we gave them his A-number? If your husband has insurance through his employer and you're eligible to be added, have him talk to the benefits managers there. If you're trying to buy through the exchange, your Notice of Action for AOS *should* be sufficient but the K1/AOS process is really unique and it is possible they missed it. But, try. You may need to see someone in person, this might not be possible online. If for whatever reason you're left out, your EAD DOES make you eligible and you'll get that soon. Or  you can go the private route which does not need an SSN or any immigration information at all.

1

My husband is self employed and has government assisted insurance. Which I can't get, right? I remember some of the forms saying that I am not allowed to have any kind of governmental aid for a while after immigrating.

 

Quote

If you leave now, you completely abandon the process, no refunds, nothing and if you want to return to live, you'll need a spouse visa. Same if you leave after getting your green card (which takes about 6 months, not "years"). If you leave the US as a green card holder for more than 6 months,  you've abandoned your green card and will need a visa to return. Not sure if/how this would effect your ability to use ESTA but I'd look into that too. Citizenship (which does take years) is what gives you the ability to come and go as you please and stay away for as long as you like.

 

I understand that each case is unique, but it seems pretty short-sighted to me to change your mind on what country you're going to live in over a few weeks of being uninsured (after how many weeks already?)

1

Well, I still have insurance through my parents back in Austria until February. And really that's not the only reason. It does worry me though. I come from a country where you don't even know how much your last doctors visit cost. And paying $700 for a 20 minutes ER visit is something we can't afford right now with me not working.

 

Also thank you for the tip with ESTA - I will have to look into that to make sure I am still able to get that.


Engaged: 2016-04-17

I-129 Sent: 2016-04-20

NOA 1: 2016-05-10

NOA 2: 2016-07-13

Visited him in US: 2016-07 until 2016-09

Interview Date: 2016-09-12

Result: Approved

Visa received: 2016-09-14

US Entry: 2016-09-21

Wedding: 2016-10-25

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1 hour ago, millefleur said:

My sister (USC) lives in Austria with her Austrian husband and she finds it extremely hard to live there. Even after 5+ years of being there and speaking fluent German, she just finds the people to be really hard to make friends with. She has also struggled to get a job there. Austrians seem to only respect Austrian universities degrees. It might be different if you're in a STEM field, maybe American degrees are more respect in that sphere?

 

So, I don't know what your husband's situation is, but if he hasn't lived in Austria before, despite the fact that the Aufenthaltstitel is pretty straightforward and easy to get compared to the US green card, there can be another set of issues which will make it hard to live there. There are a lot of things to think about, but since you've already come so far on the green card journey, why abandon it now? As the others have said, you'll lose everything and have to start over again from zero if you decide to head back to the States. It's a decision that you should consider with care.

 

I am sorry your sister is having a hard time in Austria! My husband works in social media marketing which is still a relatively new field of expertise. The company he is working for as a contractor would allow him to keep working for them in Austria at least for a while.

My cousin's husband is also American and after his German was good enough he found a good job easily. So we have our hopes up.


Engaged: 2016-04-17

I-129 Sent: 2016-04-20

NOA 1: 2016-05-10

NOA 2: 2016-07-13

Visited him in US: 2016-07 until 2016-09

Interview Date: 2016-09-12

Result: Approved

Visa received: 2016-09-14

US Entry: 2016-09-21

Wedding: 2016-10-25

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Thank you all for your input!

 

It is a tough decision and losing all the progress we made so far sucks. 

There are a lot of factors we are trying to consider in our decision. And insurance is one of them but obviously not the main problem. It's good to know, though, that I can get it without my SSN. 

 

 


Engaged: 2016-04-17

I-129 Sent: 2016-04-20

NOA 1: 2016-05-10

NOA 2: 2016-07-13

Visited him in US: 2016-07 until 2016-09

Interview Date: 2016-09-12

Result: Approved

Visa received: 2016-09-14

US Entry: 2016-09-21

Wedding: 2016-10-25

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4 minutes ago, saralina said:

I applied a week after our wedding. So there were still at least 50 days of my visa left. It took them over 7 weeks to tell me that it was declined. 

 

My husband is self employed and has government assisted insurance. Which I can't get, right? I remember some of the forms saying that I am not allowed to have any kind of governmental aid for a while after immigrating.

 

Well, I still have insurance through my parents back in Austria until February. And really that's not the only reason. It does worry me though. I come from a country where you don't even know how much your last doctors visit cost. And paying $700 for a 20 minutes ER visit is something we can't afford right now with me not working.

 

Also thank you for the tip with ESTA - I will have to look into that to make sure I am still able to get that.

 

 

Hrm, interesting on the timing. Maybe that's what they meant....but I still don't think that that would have been grounds for denial. K1 is so unique in the way it works (non-immigrant visa without work authorization that ends in immigration, by design) that it throws a lot standard processes off. I'll dig around a bit but maybe it's possible to try again. Was it the person who told you this or some sort of official denail? Either way, your EAD should be here soon and it's all a moot point. EAD *definitely* qualifies for a SSN.

 

Explain "government assisted insurance"? He purchased through Healthcare.gov and has his fees reduced based on income? You can't receive "means tested benefits" but I don't think that that would qualify. That generally means food stamps and subsidized housing etc. The fee scale based on income is sort of like tax brackets-- the less  you make, the lower your tax rate. Is he on Medicaid (government healthcare for the poor)?

 

I'm not sure how Medicaid works and am pretty sure that you'd be excluded from that. But, if he has a plan through healthcare.gov, his getting married is a "qualifying life event" so he can change from insuring just himself to insuring "the household', of which you are a member. Plus, it' is Open Season right now, so anyone can make changes right now, until January 31. Again, because of your lack of SSN, this may be something you need to take care of in person. That stinks, I know (we had to file taxes in person last year for the same reason) but it's how it is. I would hurry up and get on finding a family plan now, though.

 

I understand your frustrations with our healthcare/insurance system. A good half or more of the people in this country feel the same way.


Marriage/ AOS Timeline:

23 Dec 2015: Legal marriage

23 Jan 2016: Wedding!

23 Jan 2016: "Blizzard of the Century", wedding canceled/rescheduled (thank goodness we were legally married first or we'd have had a big problem!) :sleepy:

24 Jan 2016: Small "civil ceremony" with friends and family who were snowed in with us. December was a bit of a secret and people had traveled internationally and knew we *had* to get married that weekend, and our December legal marriage was nothing but signing a piece of paper at our priest's kitchen table, without any sort of vows etc so this was actually a very special (if not legally significant) day. (L)

16 Apr 2016: Filed for AOS and EAD/AP (We delayed a bit-- no big rush, enjoying the USCIS break)

23 Apr 2016: Wedding! Finally! :luv:

27 Apr 2016: Electronic NOA1 for all 3 :dancing:
29 Apr 2016: NOA1 Hardcopy for all 3
29 Jul 2016: Online service request for late EAD (Day 104)
29 Jul 2016: EAD/AP Approved ~3 hours after online service request
04 Aug 2016: RFE for Green Card (requested medicals/ vaccination record. They already have it). :ranting:
05 Aug 2016: EAD/AP Combo Card arrived! (Day 111)
08 Aug 2016: Congressional constituent request to get guidance on the RFE. Hoping they see they have the form and approve!

K-1 Visa Timeline:

PLEASE NOTE. This timeline was during the period of time when TSC was working on I-129fs and had a huge backlog. The average processing time was 210+ days. This is in no way predictive of your own timeline if you filed during or after April 2015, unless CSC develops a backlog. A backlog is anything above the 5-month goal time listed on USCIS's site

14 Feb 2015: Mailed I-129f to Dallas Lockbox. (L) (Most expensive Valentine's card I've ever sent!)

17 Feb 2015: NOA1 "Received Date"
19 Feb 2015: NOA1 Notice Date
08 Aug 2015: NOA2 email! :luv: (173 days from NOA1)

17 Aug 2015: Sent to NVC

?? Aug 2015: Arrived at NVC

25 Aug 2015: NVC Case # Assigned

31 Aug 2015: Left NVC for Consulate in San Jose

09 Sep 2015: Consulate received :dancing: (32 days from NOA2)

11 Sep 2015: Packet 3 emailed from embassy to me, the petitioner (34 days from NOA2).

18 Sep 2015: Medicals complete

21 Sep 2015: Packet 3 complete, my boss puts a temporary moratorium on all time off due to work emergency :clock:

02 Oct 2015: Work emergency clears up, interview scheduled (soonest available was 5 business days away--Columbus Day was in there)

13 Oct 2015: Interview

13 Oct 2015: VISA APPROVED :thumbs: (236 days from NOA1)

19 Oct 2015: Visa-in-hand

24 Oct 2015: POE !

15 Dec 2015: Fiance's mother's B-2 visa interview: APPROVED! So happy she will be at the wedding! :thumbs:

!

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