Jump to content
cdh3

Requesting Advice for Complicated Tourist Visa Situation

14 posts in this topic

Recommended Posts

I'm a Canadian. I just spent the last year studying Mandarin on a scholarship in China. During my third month there I met my girlfriend. We spent all our weekends together when I was there and went traveling to Hong Kong together during the national holidays. She studied business English as her degree and I've been studying Mandarin since I was in young so we have minimal communication barriers, which has allowed us to connect at a deep level emotionally. We adopted a guinea pig and a hamster together while I was there. We went camping together and traveled by motorbike together. We are very serious about each other and love our chemistry. We make a good team. My studies in China ended in July and now I am back in my home country of Canada. I helped my girlfriend apply for a Canadian tourist visa for my girlfriend while i was studying in China to have come visit me this august for 18 days, but it was denied because of two reasons: her "personal assets and current employment situation" led the immigration officer who viewed her application to believe she would not leave Canada. She already has an above average salary and better work benefits than those in her city. We also provided proof of her mortgage payments she has been making on her apartment for the last 7-or so years as well as her banking records ($7500 usd savings) and proof of continued employment from her employer. We provided photos of us together as well of photos showing her close relationship with her family and her cat she has personally cared for at her apartment for 4 years. Since I have been back in Canada we have missed each other deeply and have decided to make a commitment to marriage to each other and living together in Canada. The complicated part is that the political situation in China is getting very scary at the moment. With the protests in Hong Kong and serious tensions with the current US administration selling of weapons to Taiwan, the trade war and threats exchanged with the USA, as well as the arbitrary detention of two Canadians during the Huawei incident, things are not looking good. I do not feel comfortable returning to China at this time and she is understanding of this. We are looking to get married and since she has history now of been denied a tourist visa to Canada we think she will not have very good chances at re-applying to come here for a wedding. We are considering the option of applying for a US tourist visa for her to meet me in Hawaii to get married and then travel across the westcoast of the USA and then have have her return home to China while I go back to Canada to file the sponsorship paperwork to bring her there. (more specific itinerary to come) I am inquiring into what chance you think she has at being accepted given the above information? Would our plans to get married to a Canadian citizen there improve her chances of being accepted for a visa and make her less of an immigration risk to the United States in the eyes of immigration officers? We both agree it would be better to have the marriage take place in an English speaking country so we can avoid the complication of notarized translations when I plan to sponsor her to live with me in Canada in the future. 

Any advice would be greatly appreciated,
Thank you.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
33 minutes ago, cdh3 said:

I'm a Canadian. I just spent the last year studying Mandarin on a scholarship in China. During my third month there I met my girlfriend. We spent all our weekends together when I was there and went traveling to Hong Kong together during the national holidays. She studied business English as her degree and I've been studying Mandarin since I was in young so we have minimal communication barriers, which has allowed us to connect at a deep level emotionally. We adopted a guinea pig and a hamster together while I was there. We went camping together and traveled by motorbike together. We are very serious about each other and love our chemistry. We make a good team. My studies in China ended in July and now I am back in my home country of Canada. I helped my girlfriend apply for a Canadian tourist visa for my girlfriend while i was studying in China to have come visit me this august for 18 days, but it was denied because of two reasons: her "personal assets and current employment situation" led the immigration officer who viewed her application to believe she would not leave Canada. She already has an above average salary and better work benefits than those in her city. We also provided proof of her mortgage payments she has been making on her apartment for the last 7-or so years as well as her banking records ($7500 usd savings) and proof of continued employment from her employer. We provided photos of us together as well of photos showing her close relationship with her family and her cat she has personally cared for at her apartment for 4 years. Since I have been back in Canada we have missed each other deeply and have decided to make a commitment to marriage to each other and living together in Canada. The complicated part is that the political situation in China is getting very scary at the moment. With the protests in Hong Kong and serious tensions with the current US administration selling of weapons to Taiwan, the trade war and threats exchanged with the USA, as well as the arbitrary detention of two Canadians during the Huawei incident, things are not looking good. I do not feel comfortable returning to China at this time and she is understanding of this. We are looking to get married and since she has history now of been denied a tourist visa to Canada we think she will not have very good chances at re-applying to come here for a wedding. We are considering the option of applying for a US tourist visa for her to meet me in Hawaii to get married and then travel across the westcoast of the USA and then have have her return home to China while I go back to Canada to file the sponsorship paperwork to bring her there. (more specific itinerary to come) I am inquiring into what chance you think she has at being accepted given the above information? Would our plans to get married to a Canadian citizen there improve her chances of being accepted for a visa and make her less of an immigration risk to the United States in the eyes of immigration officers? We both agree it would be better to have the marriage take place in an English speaking country so we can avoid the complication of notarized translations when I plan to sponsor her to live with me in Canada in the future. 

Any advice would be greatly appreciated,
Thank you.

Hi, 

 

I’m an American citizen currently going through the K1 (fiancee visa) process with my fiancee, who, like yours, is a Chinese citizen.

 

First of all, I know things have been sensitive lately, but I don’t think these big political events are reason for you personally to be worried about traveling to China to see your fiancee. I’m worried about the big picture political trends as well, but I feel perfectly safe as a US citizen here in China where I currently am living with my fiancee. Unless you work for some Canadian NGO or high tech competitor of Huawei, or are a known anti-China political activist, or have anti-China screeds on your social media accounts, I really don’t think you need to be worried.

 

Second, if your girlfriend/fiancee was denied a Canadian tourist visa because of financial reasons, chances are she’ll be denied US tourist visa as well. They’re very strict.

 

Third, if she does manage to get a US tourist visa and then marries you in Hawaii, you are most likely putting your future with her in serious jeopardy. If you were a US citizen and did this, you would be breaking US law by committing visa fraud. Since you are a Canadian citizen and not a US citizen I’m not sure exactly how that works, but I think that it probably would still count as visa fraud, and I’m guessing that when the time comes for you to get your wife residence status in Canada they would consider it visa fraud too, and it would be a huge red flag that could cause all sorts of trouble down the line. 

 

I don’t know how Canadian fiancee or spousal visas or immigration work, but if it’s anything like the US, then your best bet is either to do Canada’s version of a K1 (fiancee visa), which in the case of the US lets you bring your fiancee to the US first, then get married, then apply for residence (green card), or Canada’s version of a CR1 visa (spouse visa), in which case you get married in China, then apply for her to come to your country.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The US shares visa application information with Canada, so they will see that. The US is - IMO - more strict than Canada with immigrant intent.

That said, a US tourist visa application will be adjudicated based on her circumstances/merits of her case. She does not have a US fiance, so that is less of a reason to overstay IMO...but also probably not that large of a factor here either.

 

9 minutes ago, Hemutian said:

Third, if she does manage to get a US tourist visa and then marries you in Hawaii, you are most likely putting your future with her in serious jeopardy. If you were a US citizen and did this, you would be breaking US law by committing visa fraud. Since you are a Canadian citizen and not a US citizen I’m not sure exactly how that works, but I think that it probably would still count as visa fraud, and I’m guessing that when the time comes for you to get your wife residence status in Canada they would consider it visa fraud too, and it would be a huge red flag that could cause all sorts of trouble down the line. 

There's no fraud at all with this. Many people do this all the time and perfectly legally. Never seen a destination wedding? ;)

The fraud is if somebody comes to the US to stay. Marrying is fine...marrying and staying/adjusting status is not.

 

54 minutes ago, cdh3 said:

We both agree it would be better to have the marriage take place in an English speaking country so we can avoid the complication of notarized translations when I plan to sponsor her to live with me in Canada in the future. 

I would not let a couple pages of translations stand anywhere in the way of the process. That's making a mountain out of a molehill. Arranging a destination wedding is very likely much more complicated (barring something like a drive-through Vegas wedding) as it requires a license, an officiant, etc.


Timelines:

Spoiler

AOS (I-485 + I-131 + I-765):

9/25/17: sent forms to Chicago

9/27/17: received by USCIS

10/4/17: NOA1 electronic notification received

10/10/17: NOA1 hard copy received. Social Security card being issued in married name (3rd attempt!)

10/14/17: Biometrics appointment notice received

10/25/17: Biometrics

1/2/18: EAD + AP approved (no website update)

1/5/18: EAD + AP mailed

1/8/18: EAD + AP approval notice hardcopies received

1/10/18: EAD + AP received

9/5/18: Interview scheduled notice

10/17/18: Interview

10/24/18: Green card produced notice

10/25/18: Formal approval

10/31/18: Green card received

 

K-1:

Spoiler

I-129F

12/1/17: sent

12/14/17: NOA1 hard copy received

3/10/17: RFE (IMB verification)

3/22/17: RFE response received

3/24/17: Approved!

3/30/17: NOA2 hard copy received

 

NVC

4/6/2017: Received

4/12/2017: Sent to Riyadh embassy

4/16/2017: Case received at Riyadh embassy

4/21/2017: Request case transfer to Manila, approved 4/24/2017

 

K-1

5/1/2017: Case received by Manila (1 week embassy transfer??? Lucky~)

7/13/2017: Interview: APPROVED!!!

7/19/2017: Visa in hand

8/15/2017: POE

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, geowrian said:

There's no fraud at all with this. Many people do this all the time and perfectly legally. Never seen a destination wedding? ;)

The fraud is if somebody comes to the US to stay. Marrying is fine...marrying and staying/adjusting status is not.

 

Okay. I was basing this off of having learned that applying as a fiancee but marrying before entering the US would be visa fraud because the visa is specifically for the purpose of fiancees entering, not married spouses entering. Naturally, I assumed that the same rigid scrutiny would apply to a tourist visa - purpose is for tourism, not getting married. But I guess if the people doing the marrying are not US citizens, none of this matters.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
8 hours ago, Hemutian said:

Okay. I was basing this off of having learned that applying as a fiancee but marrying before entering the US would be visa fraud because the visa is specifically for the purpose of fiancees entering, not married spouses entering. Naturally, I assumed that the same rigid scrutiny would apply to a tourist visa - purpose is for tourism, not getting married. But I guess if the people doing the marrying are not US citizens, none of this matters.

The fraud in that case would be obtaining or using a visa that requires you to be "free to marry", when you know you are no longer free to marry anybody (because you're now married).

Some people have married mid-k1-process, but they have to then start over with a spousal visa. If they don't then, it would be fraud.


Timelines:

Spoiler

AOS (I-485 + I-131 + I-765):

9/25/17: sent forms to Chicago

9/27/17: received by USCIS

10/4/17: NOA1 electronic notification received

10/10/17: NOA1 hard copy received. Social Security card being issued in married name (3rd attempt!)

10/14/17: Biometrics appointment notice received

10/25/17: Biometrics

1/2/18: EAD + AP approved (no website update)

1/5/18: EAD + AP mailed

1/8/18: EAD + AP approval notice hardcopies received

1/10/18: EAD + AP received

9/5/18: Interview scheduled notice

10/17/18: Interview

10/24/18: Green card produced notice

10/25/18: Formal approval

10/31/18: Green card received

 

K-1:

Spoiler

I-129F

12/1/17: sent

12/14/17: NOA1 hard copy received

3/10/17: RFE (IMB verification)

3/22/17: RFE response received

3/24/17: Approved!

3/30/17: NOA2 hard copy received

 

NVC

4/6/2017: Received

4/12/2017: Sent to Riyadh embassy

4/16/2017: Case received at Riyadh embassy

4/21/2017: Request case transfer to Manila, approved 4/24/2017

 

K-1

5/1/2017: Case received by Manila (1 week embassy transfer??? Lucky~)

7/13/2017: Interview: APPROVED!!!

7/19/2017: Visa in hand

8/15/2017: POE

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Speaking about destination marriages..... Why not meet in a southern Asian country and get married?  Vietnam, Cambodia, Thailand, the Phils.....  It should be easy for Canadian and Chinese citizens to get visitor/tourist visas to those countries?


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

"Si vis amari, ama" - Seneca

 

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If you got married in Hong Kong nothing would need to be translated.   Ig you apply a few weeks in advance you can get married in a quick few day trip.


March 2, 2018  Married In Hong Kong

April 30, 2018  Mary moves from the Philippines to Mexico, Husband has MX Permanent Residency

June 13, 2018 Mary receives Mexican Residency Card

June 15, 2018  I-130 DCF Appointment in Juarez  -  June 18, 2018  Approval E-Mail

August 2, 2018 Case Complete At Consulate

September 25, 2018 Interview in CDJ and Approved!

October 7, 2018 In the USA

October 27, 2018 Green Card received 

October 29, 2018 Applied for Social Security Card - November 5, 2018 Social Security Card received

November 6th, 2018 State ID Card Received, Applied for Global Entry - Feb 8,2019 Approved.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
23 hours ago, Paul & Mary said:

If you got married in Hong Kong nothing would need to be translated.   Ig you apply a few weeks in advance you can get married in a quick few day trip.

Not sure if I would be headed to Hong Kong any time soon. DOS has a Level 2 warning people to exercise increased caution, due to civil unrest, 

 

Another place to consider would be Singapore, Mandarin is likely spoken there.


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

"Si vis amari, ama" - Seneca

 

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, Pitaya said:

Not sure if I would be headed to Hong Kong any time soon. DOS has a Level 2 warning people to exercise increased caution, due to civil unrest, 

 

So is all of China https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/international-travel/International-Travel-Country-Information-Pages/China.html

And my state in Mexico is Level 3.

 

I would avoid Hong Kong on the weekends tho for now

Edited by Paul & Mary

March 2, 2018  Married In Hong Kong

April 30, 2018  Mary moves from the Philippines to Mexico, Husband has MX Permanent Residency

June 13, 2018 Mary receives Mexican Residency Card

June 15, 2018  I-130 DCF Appointment in Juarez  -  June 18, 2018  Approval E-Mail

August 2, 2018 Case Complete At Consulate

September 25, 2018 Interview in CDJ and Approved!

October 7, 2018 In the USA

October 27, 2018 Green Card received 

October 29, 2018 Applied for Social Security Card - November 5, 2018 Social Security Card received

November 6th, 2018 State ID Card Received, Applied for Global Entry - Feb 8,2019 Approved.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, Pitaya said:

Not sure if I would be headed to Hong Kong any time soon. DOS has a Level 2 warning people to exercise increased caution, due to civil unrest, 

 

Another place to consider would be Singapore, Mandarin is likely spoken there.

Don't think tourists are in any real physical danger in HK.  More likely is that they find flights delayed or canceled, subway service delayed or canceled, and offices shut down.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 8/18/2019 at 5:39 PM, Hemutian said:

Don't think tourists are in any real physical danger in HK.  More likely is that they find flights delayed or canceled, subway service delayed or canceled, and offices shut down.

Hard to say. Best advice to follow may be to avoid Hong Kong altogether. Here is a link to a recent Yahoo article, that seems to imply that for right now, HK is not the place to be:

 

https://www.yahoo.com/news/photos-unrest-in-hong-kong-during-antigovernment-protests-150510834.html


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

"Si vis amari, ama" - Seneca

 

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Chinese do not need a visa for Saipan etc.


“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.”

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, Pitaya said:

Hard to say. Best advice to follow may be to avoid Hong Kong altogether. Here is a link to a recent Yahoo article, that seems to imply that for right now, HK is not the place to be:

 

https://www.yahoo.com/news/photos-unrest-in-hong-kong-during-antigovernment-protests-150510834.html

One thing's for sure. I would not want to be crossing the border from Hong Kong to the Mainland right now. There are reports that people are now having their phones, computers searched at the border crossing.

Since I live in Guangdong, Hong Kong used to be my go-to place for visa runs. Fortunately, there's still Macau. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
 
Didn't find the answer you were looking for? Ask our VJ Immigration Lawyers.

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
- Back to Top -


Important Disclaimer: Please read carefully the Visajourney.com Terms of Service. If you do not agree to the Terms of Service you should not access or view any page (including this page) on VisaJourney.com. Answers and comments provided on Visajourney.com Forums are general information, and are not intended to substitute for informed professional medical, psychiatric, psychological, tax, legal, investment, accounting, or other professional advice. Visajourney.com does not endorse, and expressly disclaims liability for any product, manufacturer, distributor, service or service provider mentioned or any opinion expressed in answers or comments. VisaJourney.com does not condone immigration fraud in any way, shape or manner. VisaJourney.com recommends that if any member or user knows directly of someone involved in fraudulent or illegal activity, that they report such activity directly to the Department of Homeland Security, Immigration and Customs Enforcement. You can contact ICE via email at Immigration.Reply@dhs.gov or you can telephone ICE at 1-866-347-2423. All reported threads/posts containing reference to immigration fraud or illegal activities will be removed from this board. If you feel that you have found inappropriate content, please let us know by contacting us here with a url link to that content. Thank you.
×
×
  • Create New...