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About JessM28

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  • Immigration Status
    IR-1/CR-1 Visa
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    Potomac Service Center
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    Baltimore MD
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  1. Thanks for sharing your experience! I called my Senator's office yesterday and spoke to his Middle East Immigration rep. and she said that embassies have asked that members of Congress give them about a year before they contact them to go through all the process. I was wondering because my husband had his interview on April 3rd and then this past weekend we got a letter from Senator Van Hollen that says to wait until March 1, 2020 to have them inquire with the Madrid Embassy. So Senator Van Hollen's office is giving the embassies about 10 months before they inquire. She said that unlike us (going through the process) that usually embassies will give them more information about where exactly our application is in the process. She said that the second phase of reviewing our applications is the extreme vetting and usually takes 6 months. Hopefully some of us here will start to get some good news soon!
  2. I see that @salhasl answered your question. I remember how my heart dropped when I saw "refused" after my husband had his interview. I wanted to recommend- if you have not already that you follow the "travel ban support group" page- there are lots of us in that "club" unfortunately. There is also a page for DS-5535- but not all of those people are going through the travel ban. Best of luck in your case!
  3. That is really strange and frustrating. Yes- I would check with the Embassy and maybe also with NVC to see how they want her to update that. I would have thought that they would email her if something was missing or needed to be changed. Although sometimes I think they wait since people are already in AP for the waiver- but if she can update now it might help things to move faster later. Best of luck!
  4. I don't know anything about F2 visas and I am surprised they have not asked for DS-5535 by now if your friends interview was back in February 2018. It would not be bad to gather the info for the DS-5535 (it took my husband a while to gather it)- just to have it ready in case they ask for it. My husband and I had hired an attorney to help with our visa process- but it was mostly a waste of money. There is little that lawyers can do about this situation. Does your friend have any family already in the U.S. that could contact a Senator or Congressman? They cannot really do to much- but the embassy is usually more likely to reply to them (as opposed to us). Glad to have you hear on this thread- it does help to know that there are others on this tough journey. Wish I had better info for you.
  5. Yes- You can only contact Congressmen/women from your own state. Pretty much all of them require that you give your zip code or address to confirm that you are a member of their jurisdiction. However- you could try to find a friend or family member that lives in the district and have them send a letter/email talking about the impact of your situation. I have had my family write letters on behalf of me and my husband and talking about how the travel ban has impacted me and my whole family. Just a suggestion.
  6. I didn't either- I just have been trying to reach out and participate in different groups who are fighting against the travel ban and that is how I got connected. It was actually through making an in-it video that got me the interview. I know it can be scary and intimidating to share your story- but things are not going to change until we make our voices heard. I hope that the CNN story will help all of us- in helping to keep the travel ban and what it is doing to families in the public's attention.
  7. Thank you for sharing your thoughts! I agree with your answers- especially with #3- it just really surprised me to hear that from a government official. He said he was going to call me this week- so I will see if he has any further thoughts/reasons when we talk. Thanks so much for being willing to share that you have started the writ of mandamus process- I am really interested in learning more about this process. I know my husband and I would need to wait a little longer to try our luck- but I think if we wait longer than 6 months that we might try it too. I hope you will keep us updated with whatever you are willing/able to share.
  8. Hi All, Seeking your thoughts on three questions: (FYI- my husband is Iranian and I am an American Citizen). 1. My husband had his interview in Madrid on April 3rd, 2019. We sent the DS-5535 the next day. His status changed to administrative processing on April 9th. We got one update on April 16th (but I believe that was from contact from Congressman). I have three updates however that I do not know what would spark them- April 25th, May 10th and May 13th. Is this usual? Is this a good sign? I figured maybe since our case is "new" that they are working on it- but wanted to see if this is what most people experienced when they were first put in AP. 2. I will be going to visit my husband next month (after our 2nd month of being in AP)- would it be worthwhile to try to make an appointment to go to the embassy to check on our case? Would they even allow me to do that? 3. Lastly- I was interviewed by CNN and the article should be coming out soon. I had thought about sending the article to the embassy when it comes out- but I asked the Congressman rep that has been helping in our case and he said: "As for going public, I’m glad that you are getting some press, but I wouldn’t send it to the Embassy. Without going into too much detail, I would just say that flying under the radar when it comes to the people making decisions is typically the best decision. Sometimes with other agencies, bad press serves as a catalyst for a negative outcome, which we want to avoid. I can’t say for sure what would happen, but I would hate to see the application denied due to some public pressure." Do you all agree with this? I mean I guess one way or another it will be out there- but do you think it is best not to send it directly to the embassy? Thanks for your thoughts and experiences with answering these questions. I pray for all of us stuck in this horrible situation that we will be reunited with our loved ones soon! -Jess
  9. From what I have been told- you can only have either a Senator or a Congressman check on your case. I live in Maryland and am very lucky to have Senator Van Hollen as my senator- he is working hard at holding the government accountable for the travel ban. I have also received a lot of support from Representative Trone. My husband had only about 3 weeks or less to prepare for his interview and we contacted the Senator's office right away and they got him the letter in time for him to take it to his interview (although they would not accept it). We later emailed it (as did the Senator's office) after his interview with his ds-5535 form. My suggestion would be to do a little research on your members of congress from your state and see where they stand on the travel ban/immigration. Usually most of them have websites that outline their views. Also I have found that many of them have very friendly staff- and usually have someone on staff who is dedicated to immigration issues (and in the case of Senator Van Hollen he even has a middle east expert). So when you call you should ask to speak to someone who works with immigration cases. You will have to complete a privacy release form (usually available on their website) which gives them permission to investigate your case. I agree with what NJ515 said- I don't really think that it does much to help the case- but it is good to show the embassy that you mean business and it is good to create a paper trail- that if you were to decide to do a WOM you would have evidence. Best of luck!
  10. I follow the Facebook group- Immigrants United and last night I spoke to a woman who works for a law firm and says they have had several successful WOM cases (Iranians- which are very difficult right now). Her email address is attorneyleila@gmail.com She did warn that WOM cases cost about $8,000. Might be worth a try though if it can bring your family back together.
  11. I am in! Not sure if it would help us at all- but I live in MD and Senator Van Hollen's office is monitoring our case.
  12. I shared on my Facebook page! Very powerful story. I pray this nightmare ends for all of us soon.
  13. Yes his master’s is in computer engineering. Hopefully one good point is that he got it in Spain and not in Iran- but I am not sure that it will make a difference.
  14. Yes it is so crazy- awful directions and not providing fillable forms. It really is sad that they treat people this way.
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