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JAC&MEH

K1 Visa 129-F Denial -- Next Steps?

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Well after waiting for an answer from our RFE response, I got an electronic notification today that our petition has been denied.  I'm sure most people who have been denied quickly leave this forum all together but I could really use some advice.  I have not yet received the letter, so I have no explanation for exactly why we were denied but I would think it would be safe to say it is related to our RFE.  It said the letter would explain the reasons and what our options are but I have read on here that there are NO options after being denied a K1.  I guess I'm reaching out to anyone on here that has been through the same thing that could shed some light on where to go from here.

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Just now, JAC&MEH said:

Well after waiting for an answer from our RFE response, I got an electronic notification today that our petition has been denied.  I'm sure most people who have been denied quickly leave this forum all together but I could really use some advice.  I have not yet received the letter, so I have no explanation for exactly why we were denied but I would think it would be safe to say it is related to our RFE.  It said the letter would explain the reasons and what our options are but I have read on here that there are NO options after being denied a K1.  I guess I'm reaching out to anyone on here that has been through the same thing that could shed some light on where to go from here.

What was the RFE for?

 

No appeal, only thing to do is cure the ineligiblility and file again if that is the course you choose 


YMMV

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5 minutes ago, payxibka said:

What was the RFE for?

 

No appeal, only thing to do is cure the ineligiblility and file again if that is the course you choose 

During a previous visitor visa application she listed her marital status as married.  It was a common-law marriage and it was not legally binding.  The RFE was for me to provide proof of termination of her prior marriage.  I could not produce a divorce decree as none existed.  I did, however, provide a Single Status Certificate from the Mexican government showing that she was indeed single and had no impediments to being married.  I had consulted with others on this forum that had similar situations and they had submitted a Single Status Certificate for just such a case and they were approved.  I have not received the official denial letter yet but I have to assume that it is due to my not being able to produce a divorce decree for a non legally-binding marriage.  I would not imagine that would receive our RFE response, review it, and then deny us on different grounds but who knows.

 

Not sure if it would make sense to file again as I would still not be able to produce a divorce decree.  I'm not really sure what we can do.  If we go ahead and get married and go the whole I-130 route, wouldn't this same issue come up again?  In order for us to be able to get married in Mexico, she would need to produce the very same Single Status Certificate that we sent to them in response to our RFE.  Maybe someone on here that has had a K1 denied and then successfully went on to secure an I-130 could chime in with some advice.  The reason we even went the whole K1 route was so that we could be together sooner.  I guess that didn't really work out.

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What I am confused about is that according to information that I have found on the web (for whatever use that is), it claims that if your K1 visa was denied at the USCIS stage, that you can file an appeal within 30 days using an I-290B form.  Not sure if that is actually an option or not.  I will be meeting with my lawyer as soon as I actually get the letter.  Has anyone on here ever appealed a denied K1 at the USCIS level?

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43 minutes ago, JAC&MEH said:

What I am confused about is that according to information that I have found on the web (for whatever use that is), it claims that if your K1 visa was denied at the USCIS stage, that you can file an appeal within 30 days using an I-290B form.  Not sure if that is actually an option or not.  I will be meeting with my lawyer as soon as I actually get the letter.  Has anyone on here ever appealed a denied K1 at the USCIS level?

Your appeal would be a waste of time. The same as having a lawyer for marriage visas - waste of time. And money.

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2 minutes ago, WandY said:

Your appeal would be a waste of time. The same as having a lawyer for marriage visas - waste of time. And money.

I suspected that would be the case but I didn't think it would hurt to ask.  I don't know how I'm going to break the news to my fiancee...  I'm not sure she's up to waiting another year for me.  I need to wait to get the letter before I tell her as I am not entirely sure what the reasoning for the denial will be.

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Where were you exactly in the K process? Typically the issue of previous DS filled out for tourist visas with incorrect info doesnt come into play until it is at the Embassy. Did you list a previous marriage on the 129F? If you could provide some more info it would help get you the best advice. Also when you say my attny did you use one for filing?

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3 hours ago, Villanelle said:

Where were you exactly in the K process? Typically the issue of previous DS filled out for tourist visas with incorrect info doesnt come into play until it is at the Embassy. Did you list a previous marriage on the 129F? If you could provide some more info it would help get you the best advice. Also when you say my attny did you use one for filing?

This was during USCIS stage.  We had received a RFE regarding proof of termination of previous marriage and had responded to it.  This electronic notification indicated that we had been denied on 11/1.  I am hoping the actual letter will show up tomorrow.  Perhaps it will be a NOID as opposed to a flat out denial.  Not sure.  The attorney that I was referring to, was someone I consulted with while preparing my response to the RFE.  I did not list that she had been married previously as to my knowledge, she had not been.  When I received the RFE and discussed it with her, I found out that she had applied for a visitor visa in the past as "married" as she had been living the same guy for over 5 years at the time.  That was why we received the RFE.

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The case status website stated the following:

 

On November 1, 2019, we denied your Form I-129F, Petition for Alien Fiancé(e), Receipt Number WACXXXXXXXXXX. We sent you a denial notice that explains why we denied your case and your options. Please follow the instructions in the notice. If you do not receive your denial notice by November 16, 2019, please go to www.uscis.gov/e-request to request a copy of the notice. If you move, go to www.uscis.gov/addresschange to give us your new mailing address.

 

Is it possible that what I will be receiving is actually a NOID as opposed to a flat out denial?  I had a friend here on the forum that suggested that perhaps that might be the case.  I'm just wondering if the case status website would indicate the same for a denial as for a NOID.

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Wait for the letter to know for sure why it was denied / why they didn't accept the evidence provided.

 

A Single Status Certificate is often useless after somebody has claimed on official forms to be married. The reason is you are trying to prove a negative. A Single Status Certificate does not prove that one is actually single - just that there is no record of a marriage by that issuing authority.

For instance, until my wife and I went through the Report Of Marriage process for the Philippines, she could receive a Certificate of No Marriage (CENOMAR) just fine in her home country. The certificate would not mean she is actually single (she was clearly married to me), just that there was no record of it in the Philippines.

 

Overcoming that previous visa application marital status is going to be very difficult. I honestly am not sure how to do it - again, it's trying to prove a negative. Others have had the issue but we typically do not hear back from them on this website to see how things turned out.

I hope things work out. Best wishes.

 

Edit: One of the reasons the US is so strict on this is because people lie about their marital status in attempts to obtain a tourist visa. They believe stating that they are married is a strong tie to return home and therefore less likely to be denied under 214(b). So it could means admitting to a misrepresentation (which carries a permanent bar with it, if deemed material).

Edited by geowrian

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

12/1/16: sent

12/14/16: 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

 

 

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The sad future fact will be,  if the OP tries to file an i130, they will be looking for a divorce decree for the same non existant marriage. 


YMMV

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9 minutes ago, geowrian said:

Wait for the letter to know for sure why it was denied / why they didn't accept the evidence provided.

 

A Single Status Certificate is often useless after somebody has claimed on official forms to be married. The reason is you are trying to prove a negative. A Single Status Certificate does not prove that one is actually single - just that there is no record of a marriage by that issuing authority.

For instance, until my wife and I went through the Report Of Marriage process for the Philippines, she could receive a Certificate of No Marriage (CENOMAR) just fine in her home country. The certificate would not mean she is actually single (she was clearly married to me), just that there was no record of it in the Philippines.

 

Overcoming that previous visa application marital status is going to be very difficult. I honestly am not sure how to do it - again, it's trying to prove a negative. Others have had the issue but we typically do not hear back from them on this website to see how things turned out.

I hope things work out. Best wishes.

 

Edit: One of the reasons the US is so strict on this is because people lie about their marital status in attempts to obtain a tourist visa. They believe stating that they are married is a strong tie to return home and therefore less likely to be denied under 214(b). So it could means admitting to a misrepresentation (which carries a permanent bar with it, if deemed material).

I have been in frequent contact with 3 posters on this forum who had very similar situations.  One is from Kenya, the other Jamaica, and the last in Argentina.  In all three cases, they provided the USCIS with Single Status Certificates as proof of their eligibility to marry.  In two of the instances, it was at the same USCIS stage as we are when responding to an RFE and in both cases they proceeded all the way through the process and successfully obtained their K1 visa.  In one of the cases, it was during an AOS stage after the person had already entered the country on a visitor visa, married a US citizen, and was then going through the AOS phase.  I am fully aware that there is absolutely no consistency on how different adjudicators may consider evidence submitted to them in response to a RFE.  It is quite possible that the others that I have been communicating with simply lucked out.  Who knows.  I consulted with a US attorney and a Mexican attorney when preparing our response to the RFE.  I had my fiancee prepare a sworn statement, the Mexican attorney write a letter, and sent in the official Single Status Certificate.  I had everything officially translated into English.  Not really sure what else I could have done.

 

As for the misrepresentation angle, I gave that a lot of thought and that was another reason I sought legal counsel in both the US and in Mexico. She honestly was living with this guy for over 5 years at the time she applied for her visitor visa.  If it becomes necessary, he is willing to cooperate in whatever fashion may be necessary to document the relationship.  After getting this denial, it appears that may be our last option but I am not aware of how one can obtain a legal divorce from someone that you were never legally married to.  I was not aware but in Mexico if two people (who are otherwise legally able to marry) live together as husband and wife for over 2 years, they are considered to be in a common-law marriage.  I had this corroborated by the Mexican attorney in her letter that was submitted with the RFE response package as I am by no means an expert in Mexican law.  

 

As most people on the forum are aware, the information conveyed on the case status page is not very helpful and does not elaborate in the least bit so clearly I am going to have to wait for the actual letter to come in the mail.  My last hope is that we are actually receiving a NOID and not a flat out denial so that we will at least have one more opportunity to find which rock that are actually looking for.  From what I hear, the appeal process is not the right approach.  Is there any chance that the denial could be based on something entirely apart from the actual subject of the RFE?  I'm assuming that must be it or otherwise I would have thought they would have brought any other concern up during our RFE.

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1 minute ago, JAC&MEH said:

Is there any chance that the denial could be based on something entirely apart from the actual subject of the RFE?  I'm assuming that must be it or otherwise I would have thought they would have brought any other concern up during our RFE.

Yes. The denial could be for anything with the petition, not just related to the RFE. That said, the cause of the RFE is almost always the cause (otherwise they would have either denied or RFE'd for the issue, unless they simply didn't notice it originally).


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

12/1/16: sent

12/14/16: 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

 

 

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24 minutes ago, payxibka said:

The sad future fact will be,  if the OP tries to file an i130, they will be looking for a divorce decree for the same non existant marriage. 

Yes;  I was thinking exactly the same.  I have just heard on here so many times where people who have been denied a K1, go ahead and get married and then go the I-130 route.  I will wait to read the letter but I am already researching to see if there is some way to obtain a legal divorce from a common-law spouse in Mexico.  That may be our last option - if we have any at all.  

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2 minutes ago, geowrian said:

Yes. The denial could be for anything with the petition, not just related to the RFE. That said, the cause of the RFE is almost always the cause (otherwise they would have either denied or RFE'd for the issue, unless they simply didn't notice it originally).

That was what I was thinking as well.  I really appreciate everyone's responses and patience with my stupid questions and concerns.  I'm sure you guys have seen it all.  I have tried my best to research this searching through the forums but there really isn't too much on here on this subject but I was able to make contact with these 3 helpful individuals.  

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