Consulate / USCIS Member Review #31066

Review on May 19, 2022:



Review Topic: IR-1/CR-1 Visa

The visa entry line is at the southmost on Calle Serrano.

They let both the beneficiary and the US citizen petitioner (me) into the waiting room. We were inside the embassy for a little less than 2 hours. The initial processing consisted of a bag x-ray and metal detector. All electronic devices such as cellphones and ear buds were collected and stored at the guard station. It was possible to bring small carry bags and a water bottle inside. A second initial processing step involved preparing an envelope for the return of the passport - the Embassy supplied envelopes - and taking a number for the appropriate processing line.

There were three lines, one for nonimmigrant visas, one for immigrant visa, and one for US citizen services. The visa interviews happened at small windows in front of everyone in the waiting room. The waiting area has a small play area for children. There was one US citizen family and one immigrant visa family with children waiting with us.

For the immigrant visa, there was a first interview to collect the documents such as birth certificate, marriage certificate, and passport, and to ask basic informational questions such as the date of the medical exam. This interview took about 10 minutes.

There was a long waiting period during which most of the consular officers were working with US citizen services or nonimigrant visas. Once the US citizen and nonimigrant visa lines were empty, several more consular officers began reviewing immigrant visas.

The second interview was more detailed. First, the officer reviewed documents on the computer. Then they called the beneficiary for questioning. The petitioner was allowed nearby, but only the beneficiary was questioned. In our case, the questions were brief and few. They asked when and where we met (2014, USA) and how long we were dating before getting married (5 years). It was nearly noon at this point and I think they were ready for lunch; few questions were asked. Regarding the petitioner income and domicile, they didn't ask for more documents or other information. I assume that they were satisfied with the documents previously submitted to the NVC and directly to the Embassy.

Because the interviews were held in the same waiting room, I was able to observe two other 2nd interviews. For at least one applicant, in this interview they discussed the petitioner's financial documents and they were sent away with instructions to update the financial documents.

For us, the beneficiary's medical report had not yet been transferred. Despite this, they said Welcome to the United States and said the visa could be approved when the medical report is satisfactory and transferred.

We have a problem with the medical examiner not accepting the EU Covid certificate as adequate proof of vaccination. (It only lists the 2nd vaccination date, and they want both dates.) I'm confident that we will eventually overcome this.

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