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About JoelThai

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    Senior Member
  • Member # 262306

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  • City
    Redwood City
  • State

Immigration Info

  • Immigration Status
    K-1 Visa
  • Place benefits filed at
    California Service Center
  • Local Office
    San Francisco CA
  • Country

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  1. After 224 days, my wife's EAD/AP has been approved. Online it shows only the EAD as approved (AP show a status of "Case Was Received"), but today I received separate paper notices in the USPS mail, both for the EAD and AP, that they have been approved and the card will arrive separately. Fortunately that means I will not need to bother the Ombudsman. 🎉
  2. I have been waiting 221 days for an I-131 & I-765 approval now. I have also filed two case inquiries, the first online and the second (last week) via Tier 2. Neither of the inquiries have been assigned for review. Now I am preparing to submit a request to the Ombudsman, just need to wait for the 60 days past "normal processing time". But that has not moved much in the last 45 days either. I suggest reading the 2019 Ombusman report to get an idea how bad processing "promises" are missed by the USCIS. Starting on page 70 they discuss issues with EAD adjudication. https://www.dhs.gov/sites/default/files/publications/19_0712_cisomb_2019_ombudsman_annualreport.pdf
  3. You are not alone! We are still waiting also for EAD/AP... 217 days since filing and and "only" 68 days since "Ready to be scheduled for an interview" . After contacting USCIS both with an online inquiry and Tier 2 phone call (neither of which have been assigned to an investing officer), my next step will be to request help from the Ombudsman. But that requires waiting a least 60 days past the normal processing cutoff date. After reading the Ombudsman 2019 Annual Report, it seems that USCIS has many problems with case management. It is an interesting read that provides some insight into the issues that are facing. Here is a link to the report for those interested in reading it. https://www.dhs.gov/sites/default/files/publications/19_0712_cisomb_2019_ombudsman_annualreport.pdf
  4. My wife had this experience at the Social Security office when applying for her SS card. My wife was unsure of the meaning of the first question asked by the officer and looked to me for help in answering. It was clear my wife did not fully understand the question without additional information. Fortunately the officer knew what to do and requested a translator on the phone to assist with the questions. Once the translator was on the phone, everything else went smoothly. So, I guess the moral of Loren's experience is, unless both (husband and wife) are truly fluent english speakers (sometimes I doubt that I am even one), be prepared with a translator or confirm availability of translation services at the immigration office. Comprehension is also a two way street. There is always a chance that the officer can have trouble understanding the spoken english of the interviewee due to accent and/or pronunciation challenges.
  5. You may have a very good point... While I believe my documents were well and accurately prepared, and I have not received any RFEs, my details for travel were not specific. So, your suggestion is a possibility. It would be interesting to hear from others who have delayed APs as to how they documented travel plans. Thanks for sharing your ideas.
  6. I am assigned to the San Francisco office and it took about 5 months to have my I-485 ready to be assigned for interview. But the wait times for actual I-485 interviews for San Francisco are currently 18 to 26 months. 😧 https://egov.uscis.gov/processing-times/ I see you got your EAD card in 107 days! Did you expedite your request, or were you lucky to get one so quickly? I am currently at 200 days of waiting. 😧
  7. Searching profile timelines for the San Francisco Office K1 filers (with a few other filters to try to find useful timelines), I found 8 timelines of interest. Of those, only 2 had AP/EAD issued in under 180 days. The other 6 are either still waiting, or took 180 days or more. Generally I am looking at timelines where EAD was applied for after 12/1/2018 and before 5/1/2019. For the timeline you found, an EAD arrival in 75 days does seem unusual. An expedited request perhaps? It does seem that the San Francisco office has an unusual percentage of VJ members with processing times of 180 or greater days. USCIS currently suggests that normal processing time is between 135 - 195 days . (4.5 to 6.5 months) (It looks like they have rolled back the inquiry date to March 14th.) . I am at 196, so I guess I am still over by one day now. 😉 For my search here is what I am finding... Filed 2/6/2019 - No AP/EAD yet... https://www.visajourney.com/timeline/profile.php?id=309482 Filed 3/12/2019 - No AP/EAD yet... https://www.visajourney.com/timeline/profile.php?id=298072 Filed 4/14/2018 - No AP/EAD yet... https://www.visajourney.com/timeline/profile.php?id=290629 Filed 12/19/2018 - AP/EAD Approved 8/3/2019 - Total wait 227 days https://www.visajourney.com/timeline/profile.php?id=289679 Filed 12/28/2018 - AP/EAD Approved 4/12/2019 - Total wait 105 days https://www.visajourney.com/timeline/profile.php?id=285335 Filed 1/30/2019 - AP/EAD Approved 7/30/2019 - Total wait 180 days https://www.visajourney.com/timeline/profile.php?id=303593 Filed 2/27/2019 - EAD Approved 8/29/2019 - Total wait 180 days https://www.visajourney.com/timeline/profile.php?id=287275 Filed 3/6/2019 - EAD Approved 8/8/2019 - Total wait 155 days https://www.visajourney.com/timeline/profile.php?id=284400
  8. I am seeing evidence of delayed EAD for San Francisco filers. Your timeline is similar to mine (first filed I-485/I-131/I-765 with received date of 3/11). My I-485 was last touched on Aug 12th (status changed to Ready to be scheduled for an Interview) and the I-131 and I-765 have yet to be approved. Of the handful of San Francisco filers I have located (by reviewing VJ Timelines), they have all taken between 180 to 210 days to receive EAD/AP. My AP status has been at "Case Received" for 196 days now. So hopefully my "hunch" is correct and within the next two weeks the waiting will be over. I did file an online inquiry on 9/6 with a promised response by 9/28. But no news yet.... Once I know anything, I will share here.
  9. It is really too bad that they can not supply useful information. But it is encouraging to know that there are indications that your case is hopefully assigned to an officer. I submitted my first service request for my AP on September 6th (2 weeks ago) and still waiting for a response. (My I-485 (ready for scheduling), I-131 (case was received), and I-765 (fingerprint review completed) were submitted to USCIS in early March). Hopefully we both hear something useful soon.
  10. I did submit a request via the web form last week. You are correct, "Ready to Schedule" appeared for my I-485 in early August. The only other thing I am not sure about is that the USCIS states that if your case had a status update within the last 60 days, the the case is considered to be within normal processing. I wonder since the I-765 and I-131 underlies the I-485, and the I-485 was updated about 40 days ago, would USCIS claim that my I-131 and I-765 are within normal processing. But this still points back to why the I-485 status update was slow, and if the local office is a factor in this. With enough data, sometimes interesting things can be discovered, so I am looking carefully at the experience of others processing through San Francisco as an explanation of why EAD/AP approval is so slow. I think I see evidence of a pattern, but now I am looking for evidence to prove me wrong, suggesting that being assigned to San Francisco does not necessary mean that the EAD/AP will be late. I wish I had direct query access to the VJ database! It would be so much easier! For example, last year I noticed a pattern of the NVC batch mailing of I-129F paperwork to the various embassies occurring once every two weeks. So, it became predictable, after USCIS issued you a NOA2 I-129f and the NVC received the papers as to when the NVC would forward the papers to the appropriate embassy. I am not sure if they are still doing it that way (some embassies were transitioning to electronic transmission at the time), but there were many people who found that information pretty useful. Today I found something that I find interesting and revealing, and have not noticed discussed previously.... Regarding processing times, USCIS states the following: "We are testing a new method to calculate processing times for Forms I-90, I-485, I-751, and N-400. With this method, we can post processing times that are more accurate, timely, and easier to understand. What do the processing times mean? We now show case processing times as a range. The first number is the time it takes to complete 50% of cases (the median). The second number is the time it takes to complete 93% of cases. For non-pilot forms, we will continue to use our old method to calculate processing times, but will add an upper limit that is generally 130% of the processing time. We calculate processing times by using historical data of completed cases. We cannot project how long it will take to complete a case filed today." https://egov.uscis.gov/processing-times/more-info https://www.uscis.gov/news/news-releases/uscis-updates-webpage-share-more-accurate-processing-times So, with respect to the I-485 at least, they are admitting that their posted processing times do not apply to 8% of the case load. 😧 And I am not sure where they define what the "old method to calculate processing times" is, but it seems they pad that number by 130% to determine the upper bounds. But 130% of what?
  11. One idea I have that could help balance local processing times is to allow the applicant to choose which office performs the I-485 interview. I bet many of us would not mind a day trip to an office with short processing times, and this would likely reduce the loads on the offices with excessive back logs. Come on USCIS, think outside the box! I did see a recent USCIS directive that would allow cases to be reassigned to nearby field offices, but that seems to have not produced any noticeable benefit to the San Francisco office as of yet... For example the next closest office to San Franciso is San Jose, with an I-485 10 month wait on the low end vs a 17.5 month wait on the low end for San Francisco. Living within 30 minutes of both offices, I would certainly welcome a transfer to the San Jose office! https://www.uscis.gov/news/alerts/uscis-aims-decrease-processing-times-n-400-and-i-485
  12. It looks like your I-485 is processing through San Francisco as well. I think I see a possible pattern emerging for EAD/AP approval. For applicants assigned to local offices with with long I-485 processing times, it seems that their EAD/AP processing is excessive as well. The pattern I am seeing for San Francisco is that EAD/AP approval often takes 180 - 210 days (or more). QUESTION: If your I-485 is being processed in the SAN FRANCISO local office, and you have filed for EAD/AP between JAN 1, 2019 and April 1, 2019, how many days of processing (or waiting) has your EAD/AP APPROVAL taken? *Rant on* With the current administration worried about Public Charge and the expectation that immigrants should have their own personal resources available to provide for them, it is hypocritical to deny or delay permission of those immigrants some basic American human rights, such as the ability to work to pay for our living expenses, and ability to travel abroad to fulfill job requirements and family needs. *Rant off* And a word of advice, for new members considering the choice between a K1 Visa and a CR1 Visa, is look carefully at your local office I-485 processing times and consider the impacts of K1 Adjustment of Status on your personal needs and expectations. If the processing times are greater than 6 months, strongly consider the CR1 route!
  13. Thanks for sharing your data. I guess you were quick to get the California ID card before your I-94 had less than 30 days left. We just missed that mark, so, another reason why we need the EAD, to get a California ID card. We did a walk in for the BIO appt as well to the assigned San Francisco office, but I guess it did not help. It seems that there is no rhyme or reason to predicting how USCUS does things. Why it took so long for our I-485 to update to "ready" is also a mystery. Tonight I reviewed several VJ profiles indicating K1 AOS for the San Francisco office, and it seems that it is not too unusual to see processing of the EAD/AP taking 180 - 210 days, so that gives some hope. If not, at about the 210 day point I will have the option to contact the ombudsman, but hopefully that will not be necessary.
  14. Yikes! This is not encouraging. Which Senator did you contact? That was going to be my next step after my current enquiry "expires" on the 28th. I know one of them is busy trying to become President..... 🙄 I am going to follow you to see what happens with the ombudsman. I hope it is good news soon. Clearly something is wrong.... Now I wonder if the SF office is the common denominator....
  15. Thanks for your insight. It aligns mostly with what I see when I scan 500 cases around mine. But, I do see many other I-131 cases also in a "Case Was Received" state within my scan, but I just am not sure if this may be because they have already received greencards, or they are in the same boat as me. But yes, no RFEs. A possible clue is our I-485 was updated to "Case is Ready to be Scheduled for an Interview" during the first week of August, about the same time I would have expected the EAD/AP to be issued. I wonder if it is the national office that sets the status to "Ready to be Scheduled", or the local office. I ask because I am thinking that the I-485 status should have normally updated earlier than August, but maybe delays due to the backlog in San Francisco. My best hope is that the EAD/AP is somehow slightly delay due to the delay in the I-485 being ready for scheduling. But I just have no idea. If anyone has any insight into the "normal" timeline of EAD/AP processing and the I-485 changing status to "ready to be scheduled", I would be interested in what your experience was.
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