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Mike E

Experiences of a K-1 visa holder getting California state Real ID

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After we successfully got the SS card before we got married, and after we got the marriage certificate, at 61 days before the K-1 expired, we went to California DMV office in San Jose at Senter RD. My understanding is that at 59 days or less, it would be too late unless we had filed for AOS and had the USCIS acknowledgment letter. For various reasons, we had not and to date have not done the AOS.  


We tried to get an appointment but due to the stampede to get Real ID before the 2020 deadline, ststewidenthe earliest appointment we could get an appointment was mid March.  It being late January, that wasn’t going to work. So instead we filled out an application online and printed the application number. 


An hour before the DMV opened we arrived and there were already 100 people ahead of us. 


After the DMV opened, 15 minutes later our turn in the first. line came. We presented my wife’s application number, SS card, passport, I-94, my utility bill, and our marriage certificate.  The clerk asked us for a second proof of address and we said we didn’t have one (because the DMV check list said we didn’t need one. The clerk said ok and gave us ticket number for the next window. B-07


20 minutes later B-07 was called.  The second clerk was knowledgeable and accepted all our docs.  I paid the fee, about $20, with my ATM card.  She said we would get the state ID in two weeks. After we had the photo taken we left.  10 days later a Real ID California state ID arrived in the mail.  


It is good for 5 years from her next birthday instead of the normal 6 years.  Still this far exceeded my expectations because all my reading said that the state ID would expire when the K-1 expired. 


Now my wife has a Real ID good for domestic air travel for the next 5 years. 


We will also now look into enrolling her into some adult education classes such as ESL, paying state resident rates.  


So these are the steps that work:


* Apply for SS cars two days after POE

* Get married. 

* Take SS card, marriage certificate, passport, I-94 and petitioner’s  utility bill to DMV and apply for Real ID


Next is AOS

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Thread is moved from the "AOS from K Visas" forum to the "Moving to the US" forum, to be among similar-themed threads.

06-04-2007 = TSC stamps postal return-receipt for I-129f.

06-11-2007 = NOA1 date (unknown to me).

07-20-2007 = Phoned Immigration Officer; got WAC#; where's NOA1?

09-25-2007 = Touch (first-ever).

09-28-2007 = NOA1, 23 days after their 45-day promise to send it (grrrr).

10-20 & 11-14-2007 = Phoned ImmOffs; "still pending."

12-11-2007 = 180 days; file is "between workstations, may be early Jan."; touches 12/11 & 12/12.

12-18-2007 = Call; file is with Division 9 ofcr. (bckgrnd check); e-prompt to shake it; touch.

12-19-2007 = NOA2 by e-mail & web, dated 12-18-07 (187 days; 201 per VJ); in mail 12/24/07.

01-09-2008 = File from USCIS to NVC, 1-4-08; NVC creates file, 1/15/08; to consulate 1/16/08.

01-23-2008 = Consulate gets file; outdated Packet 4 mailed to fiancee 1/27/08; rec'd 3/3/08.

04-29-2008 = Fiancee's 4-min. consular interview, 8:30 a.m.; much evidence brought but not allowed to be presented (consul: "More proof! Second interview! Bring your fiance!").

05-05-2008 = Infuriating $12 call to non-English-speaking consulate appointment-setter.

05-06-2008 = Better $12 call to English-speaker; "joint" interview date 6/30/08 (my selection).

06-30-2008 = Stokes Interrogations w/Ecuadorian (not USC); "wait 2 weeks; we'll mail her."

07-2008 = Daily calls to DOS: "currently processing"; 8/05 = Phoned consulate, got Section Chief; wrote him.

08-07-08 = E-mail from consulate, promising to issue visa "as soon as we get her passport" (on 8/12, per DHL).

08-27-08 = Phoned consulate (they "couldn't find" our file); visa DHL'd 8/28; in hand 9/1; through POE on 10/9 with NO hassles(!).

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On 2/15/2019 at 10:37 PM, Mike E said:

It is good for 5 years from her next birthday instead of the normal 6 years.  Still this far exceeded my expectations because all my reading said that the state ID would expire when the K-1 expired.

DMV mistake? That is what the following article implies: https://www.sacbee.com/news/politics-government/capitol-alert/article230671784.html The issuing department in HQ is tasked with legal presence compliance: (916) 657-7790

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