Stevephoto's US Immigration Timeline

  Petitioner's Name: Steve
Beneficiary's Name: Joan
VJ Member: Stevephoto
Country: Philippines

Last Updated: 2017-03-22
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Immigration Checklist for Steve & Joan:

USCIS I-129F Petition:      
Dept of State K1 Visa:    
USCIS I-485 Petition:  
USCIS I-765 Petition:      
USCIS I-131 Petition:      
USCIS I-751 Petition:  
USCIS N-400 Petition:  


K1 Visa
Event Date
Service Center : California Service Center
Transferred? No
Consulate : Manila, Philippines
I-129F Sent : 2012-10-12
I-129F NOA1 : 2012-10-15
I-129F RFE(s) :
RFE Reply(s) :
I-129F NOA2 : 2013-04-24
NVC Received : 2013-05-03
Date Case #, IIN, and BIN assigned :
NVC Left : 2013-05-07
Consulate Received : 2013-05-09
Packet 3 Received :
Packet 3 Sent :
Packet 4 Received :
Interview Date : 2013-06-06
Interview Result : Approved
Second Interview
(If Required):
Second Interview Result:
Visa Received : 2013-06-11
US Entry : 2013-06-13
Marriage : 2013-08-24
Comments : Very smooth entrance into Honolulu, Hawaii. No problems!
Processing
Estimates/Stats :
Your I-129f was approved in 191 days from your NOA1 date.

Your interview took 234 days from your I-129F NOA1 date.


Port of Entry Review
Event Date
Port of Entry : Honolulu
POE Date : 2013-06-13
Got EAD Stamp :
Biometrics Taken :
Harassment Level : 0
Comments : Very smooth entrance into Honolulu, Hawaii. No problems!


Adjustment of Status
Event Date
CIS Office : Honolulu HI
Date Filed : 2013-09-03
NOA Date : 2013-09-10
RFE(s) :
Bio. Appt. : 2013-10-10
AOS Transfer** :
Interview Date : 2013-11-26
Approval / Denial Date : 2013-11-26
Approved : Yes
Got I551 Stamp :
Greencard Received: 2013-12-05
Comments : The interview was fast, easy and very pleasant. More "Hawaii kine 'talk story'" than an interview. I think we spent more time talking about Filipino food recipes than we did going through the packets! NO question or comment about any Civil Surgeon or vaccination form!


Employment Authorization Document
Event Date
CIS Office : Chicago National Office
Filing Method : Mail
Filing Instance : First
Date Filed : 2013-09-03
NOA Date : 2013-09-10
RFE(s) :
Bio. Appt. : 2013-10-10
Approved Date : 2013-10-24
Date Card Received : 2013-11-13
Comments : I don't remember the exact date of the EAD/AP approval but it was around the 24th.
Processing
Estimates/Stats :
Your EAD was approved in 51 days.


Advance Parole
Event Date
CIS Office : Chicago National Office
Filing Method :  
Filing Instance : First
Date Filed : 2013-09-03
NOA Date : 2013-09-10
RFE(s) :
Date Received : 2013-11-13
Comments : I don't remember the exact date of the EAD/AP approval but it was around the 24th.
Processing
Estimates/Stats :
Your AP was approved in 51 days.


Lifting Conditions
Event Date
CIS Office : California Service Center
Date Filed : 2015-08-31
NOA Date : 2015-09-02
RFE(s) :
Bio. Appt. : 2015-10-01
Interview Date :
Approval / Denial Date : 2016-04-06
Approved : Yes
Got I551 Stamp :
Green Card Received : 2016-04-14
Comments :


Citizenship
Event Date
Service Center : Phoenix AZ Lockbox
CIS Office : Honolulu HI
Date Filed : 2016-09-26
NOA Date : 2016-09-29
Bio. Appt. : 2016-10-19
Interview Date : 2017-02-22
Approved : Yes
Oath Ceremony : 2017-03-21
Comments : The ceremony was by far the most relaxed and jovial part of this whole process! Very low key and relaxed. The ceremony was short--only 45 minutes--I thought three hours!...and plenty of time for photos. I know that Joan was moved during the Pledge of Allegiance and the Star Spangled Banner. Those two never sounded so beautiful to me even as I struggled to somehow stand, hold my heart and take phone video. In short, welcome home my love. This is truly your home now and I love you. Salalmat po!

Member Reviews:

Consulate Review: Manila, Philippines
Review Topic: K1 Visa
Event Description
Review Date : June 6, 2013
Embassy Review : \"I don\'t see any problems. Your visa is APPROVED! Congratulations!\"

Those beautiful words brought an 8 month journey to a close. Well, not a close, but a transition. Anyone who has been through the Fiancťe visa process--or any visa process I imagine--knows that it is/was a long frustrating journey full of fear and uncertainty. The final step was wonderfully anti-climactic by comparison,.

We were in the 7:30AM tie slot for our interview at the embassy. Joan was up at 1:45 to get ready...I agreed to a 3:00 wake up call! We had instant noodles and bread and butter for breakfast and were in the taxi by 4:20AM! The embassy is a five minute taxi ride from the hotel so we pulled up at 4:30...to find an incredibly large bunch of people already waiting! Turns out that there were 6:15 and 6:30 time slots for tourist and other types of visas. The K-1 line was actually very short. We were the third in line. What looked chaotic at first was actually very well organized. There are plastic seats for rent for P30 (about 75 cents usd). It was soooo worth it even with a P20 tip! There was a snack and coffee stand set-up too. It was very interesting to sit and watch the sky lighten as the sun rose and Manila Bay awakened (it lived up to our nickname for it: the stinky bay!--unfortunately parts of the Bay don\'t smell very good!)...but we were thinking of other things so the smell faded fast.

The outdoor waiting area (cannot imagine what happens when it rains--we got lucky) is about 200 feet or so from the next holding area which is about 100 feet from the embassy entrance. There were about 20 of us in line for the K-1 visa by the time we were called to go. Joan went ahead of me but came back to walk with me because the people in line held our place. I was offered a wheelchair between the next two holding areas. I accepted but the distance really was not that great--of course we did not know that at the time. The wheelchair took a while so we began to think we would be late...but it did not matter.

The first line that counted was the entrance...sort of a tent set-up. Joan was asked for her appointment notice and forms (no one ever asked for the DS 230). The person checking the forms commented pleasantly that all the forms were already filled out! Then it was off through the first of two checkpoints...I just realized that I was never asked for my ID! Once you get through the first checkpoint (NO electronics!) you go to a window to be assigned a number. We got ours and proceeded to a huge waiting area but were then told to go back and get a different number for expedited processing because we had the wheelchair. You are given two copies...one gets stapled to your packet and one is given yo you to keep. \"With wheelchair\" was written on our number attached to our packet. We were then shown through a second checkpoint leading to the main waiting area. A greeter took our packet just past the checkpoint. Each set of numbers is processed in a different part of the large room, so the different lines outside made sense. However, once in the proper waiting area it did not seem to matter where you were on line. The numbers flash on a large board that tells you what window to proceed to. There is no apparent order to the numbers that flash!

Our number flashed to go to a window where they took Joan\'s fingerprints. We were told to return to the waiting area until the next step...well the expedited processing was true because we didn\'t even get back to our seat when we were called to a small room to meet with the Filipino Consul. He was businesslike, but pleasant and polite. He asked me if I minded if he talked to Joan in Tagalog. In fact he translated most of what he said anyway! The interview was over in less than 5 minutes. Joan signed the one form that you are instructed not to sign beforehand and then asked how we met, how many times I had been there (he was surprised when Joan said 4 times!). He asked if she was ever married and assumed that I had been married before. He joked that I waited a long time to get married. I said yes but good things come to those who wait! He took Joan\'s birth certificate, cenomar, and NBI. That was it for her! He then took my tax return and I-134. Finally he asked to see photos and said \"OK now go back outside and wait for your number to flash. He smiled at Joan as we left and said \"Mahalo\" to me as we left! I thought the Hawaiian touch was nice.

So back to the waiting room...for a while...listen to the instructions of the greeters! Our number did NOT flash! The greeter was saying to move to a different part of the room if you were done with the finger printing and Filipino Consul. Joan\'s name was called as soon as we moved so who knows if we were called earlier!

Here it was...the big one...the American Consul! I stood up to be a part of the interview and he swore us both in. He was openly friendly from the start and asked Joan if she understood more Tagalog than English and provided an interpreter right away. I think he recognized that Joan\'s English was ok because he asked her if we could continue in English for my benefit. He asked how we met, when I came the first time, how long I stayed and how many times I visited. He was also surprised to hear that I was on my fourth trip! He asked me where I was from and said \"oh that is not as bad as coming from the continental US! He asked what I did in Hawaii. He asked Joan if she was ever married and she asked him if he meant me and said no that I had not been married...then she said that she had not been married and he asked me. I said \"no\" and he laughed and said \"then I guess it was \'no\' for both of you!\" He asked Joan if she had any children and then how we got engaged...what visit? Joan said \"Bohol\" and he laughed. He then asked what she loved about me and why she wanted to marry me. She said because I am humble and she loves me! The consul smiled a big smile and said \"I don\'t see anything wrong here. Your visa is approved! Go back out and wait to be called to find out how to get your visa.\" We were there for less than 5 minutes!

The final step was to confirm how the visa would be delivered. Again Joan\'s name was called...no numbers flashing! The lady at this window was very friendly. I explained that I was leaving on June 11 and asked if there was any way to get the visa printed so Joan could join me. She asked if we had a ticket for her and seemed relieved when I said that we didn\'t. She then mentioned the CFO requirement and we said we were done with the CFO! She said that she could not promise, but she would put a note on our file and ask! I said \"Thank you. That is all we can ask.\" She smiled and said \"I think you can go now!\"

We were back at the hotel in time to catch the end of breakfast! We were in front of people for probably a total of 15 minutes for four windows. The process was so very easy because we were well prepared with original papers ready to go (although there was no need to weigh ourselves down with two extra copies of everything!) We did see and hear people leaving because they did not have enough documentation or originals, so be careful in your preparations.

Joan and I want to offer our extreme thanks to everyone (especially Hank) on VJ and our new friends on FB for all the advice, support and encouragement along the way! It would have been a very different journey without you...

Now if you will excuse us, we have to see if the champagne in the freezer is cold enough to pop yet!

Addendum: Joan said that the first person to check the paperwork also looked for the cd from St. Luke's. One person did not have it and went home.

(updated on June 6, 2013)
Rating : Very Good


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*Notice about estimates: The estimates are based off averages of other members recent experiences
(documented in their timelines) for the same benefit/petition/application at the same filing location.
Individual results may vary as every case is not always 'average'. Past performance does not necessarily
predict future results. The 'as early as date' may change over time based on current reported processing
times from members. There have historically been cases where a benefit/petition/application processing
briefly slows down or stops and this can not be predicted. Use these dates as reference only and do not
rely on them for planning. As always you should check the USCIS processing times to see if your application
is past due.

** Not all cases are transfered

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