JasonGG's US Immigration Timeline

  Petitioner's Name: Jason
Beneficiary's Name: Trang
VJ Member: JasonGG
Country: Vietnam

Last Updated: 2018-11-03
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Immigration Checklist for Jason & Trang:

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 : Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam
I-129F Sent : 2017-08-30
I-129F NOA1 : 2017-09-05
I-129F RFE(s) :
RFE Reply(s) :
I-129F NOA2 : 2018-03-14
NVC Received : 2018-03-23
Date Case #, IIN, and BIN assigned : 2018-03-26
NVC Left : 2018-03-31
Consulate Received : 2018-04-02
Packet 3 Received : 2018-04-10
Packet 3 Sent : 2018-04-11
Packet 4 Received :
Interview Date : 2018-05-04
Interview Result : Approved
Second Interview
(If Required):
Second Interview Result:
Visa Received : 2018-05-15
US Entry : 2018-07-03
Marriage : 2018-07-06
Comments :
Processing
Estimates/Stats :
Your I-129f was approved in 190 days from your NOA1 date.

Your interview took 241 days from your I-129F NOA1 date.


Port of Entry Review
Event Date
Port of Entry : Washington DC
POE Date : 2018-07-03
Got EAD Stamp :
Biometrics Taken :
Harassment Level : 0
Comments : We arrived at Washington Dulles just after an Emirates flight and there were only 3 non-citizen windows open. After about 2 hours, there was no one waiting in the citizen line, so they directed people to other open windows.

Once at the window, the process took about 10 minutes. The agent asked when we were getting married. He asked why we waited so long since our petition was expiring soon. I responded that it wasn't our choice. It took 10 months to get the visa. He had no idea it was taking so long for a K-1.

He asked if we had the DS-3025 in our papers because we would need it for AOS and waited for us to show that we had it. Advised that we had until September 30 to adjust status. He was pleasant and professional and made small talk while doing something on his computer. Once he realized my fiance had trouble understanding him, he didn't have a problem with me answer his questions. When we were finished, he wished us good luck.

One good thing about waiting so long to clear customs was that all our bags were waiting for us.

Two days later, we visited the local Social Security Office. After waiting about 30 minutes she submitted the application and provided her passport and I-94. Since she was entered into the system that morning, we were told the SSN should arrive in 7-10 days.


Adjustment of Status
Event Date
CIS Office : Baltimore MD
Date Filed : 2018-07-10
NOA Date : 2018-07-12
RFE(s) :
Bio. Appt. : 2018-08-09
AOS Transfer** :
Interview Date : 2018-10-23
Approval / Denial Date : 2018-10-29
Approved : Yes
Got I551 Stamp :
Greencard Received: 2018-11-02
Comments :


Employment Authorization Document
Event Date
CIS Office : Baltimore MD
Filing Method : Mail
Filing Instance : First
Date Filed : 2018-07-10
NOA Date : 2018-07-12
RFE(s) :
Bio. Appt. : 2018-08-09
Approved Date :
Date Card Received :
Comments : Received green card before EAD.
Processing
Estimates/Stats :
Based on timeline data, your EAD may be adjudicated between January 10, 2019 and February 9, 2019*.

If this date range has passed or your application is past due per USCIS processing times then you should consider calling the USCIS to inquire on your petition. If you have been approved please update your timeline.


Advance Parole
Event Date
CIS Office : Baltimore MD
Filing Method :  
Filing Instance : First
Date Filed : 2018-07-10
NOA Date : 2018-07-12
RFE(s) :
Date Received :
Comments : Received green card before AP.
Processing
Estimates/Stats :
Based on timeline data, your AP may be adjudicated between January 11, 2019 and February 10, 2019*.

If this date range has passed or your application is past due per USCIS processing times then you should consider calling the USCIS to inquire on your petition. If you have been approved please update your timeline.


Member Reviews:

Consulate Review: Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam
Review Topic: K1 Visa
Event Description
Review Date : May 4, 2018
Embassy Review : When my fiance and I arrived at the consulate at 6:40 for our 7:35 interview, there was already a line with about 50 people.

About 10 minutes before 7am, "greeters" reveiwed passports and appointment letters. Several people didn't even make it beyond this initial review! Seriously!?!? How do you show up that unprepared?!?!

The door opened and everyone was wanded by the guards and an initial bag check was done. It was hot and humid, so I was looking forward to air conditioning. There was none...no a/c for the entire process.

The door led to a covered waiting area. More greeters gave instructions entirely in Vietnamese.

20-25 oeople were led out of this area at a time. Bags went through x-ray and people went through metal detectors.

My fiance went to a desk to do something and I was asked to wait in the waiting area. My fiance and her daughter were finger printed...which took about 30 minutes. It would have been quicker, but we were allowed in before the fingerprint windows were staffed.

Next, we waited for our number to be called for documents. Maybe a 15 minute wait. I had very organized packs of paper for the k1 and k2. The clerk was only interested in the original divorce records, birth certificates, current tax return, i134, medical results, passport photos, and a couple other things. I got back a mess of paper shoved through the window slot.

Again to the benches to wait. It's important to listen to the announcements AND watch the number boards. The number boards did not always update. Pay attention at this stage because the numbers are called quickly and sounded like a bingo hall! Try to sit in the middle (around windows 12-14) so you can see both number boards and hear the announcements clearly.

From what I could tell, paperwork was collected from everyone first, then the shades were pulled on all the windows. After about 15 minutes, the shades started opening as consulate officers and interpreters arrived. There are 20 or so windows, but maybe 6-8 were staffed.

All types of visas were being interviewed. As many have said, you can watch and clearly see who was approved and who got a blue sheet and returned passport.

We waited about 2 1/2 hours for our number to be called. Pregnant women sppeared to be interviewed first. No priority appeared to be given for people with young children, though. Numbers were not called in order, but they were called in batches of 8-10...all the 1010s were called near each other, the 2030s, etc.

When my fiance's number was called, the 3 of us walked to the window. We were greeted, swore to tell the truth, and I was asked to sit.

My fiance gave her interview in Vietnamese...she was asked how often I visited and where we went, who does you fiance live with (my children's names), her age and children's ages. She was asked why her son was not coming to the US and why her daughter has no father listed on her birth certificate.

The interview was about 5 minutes. She was not asked for any additional documents or photos...though we did front load our application pretty heavily.

Her daughter wasn't asked any questions.

She was told about the passport delivery, don't open the envelope, and then she turned to me with a big smile.

She completed a delivery card, turned that in at the counter, and we exited. There was about 100 people gathered across the street waiting for relatives or friends and asking us how it went.

I would say about 60% of the interviews were approved. Everyone else I saw got blue sheets. Although it appeared that a decision was made on approval before the interview, the officers did spend a few minutes reviewing each application before calling people to the window. I saw several applicants with their US petitioner get a blue sheet, so being there may not affect the decision, but it meant a lot to my fiance. I am glad I was there with her. It is an experience I will remember and I will remember her smile and sense of relief.

Also, the staff was professional. The greeting staff was Vietnamese. They were not friendly, but also not rude. Just doing their job and controlling the crowd. The document clerk was the same...not friendly, but doing her job.

The officers and interpreters we could see were friendly and seemed to enjoy their work. They smiled and were friendly, but also professional. We could hear some annoyed questioning at times, but that was always when an applicant was clearly unprepared.

So...not a fun experience, but with a lot a preparation, homework, and studying these forums, the ordeal is survivable!
Rating : Good


Local US CIS Office Review: Baltimore MD
Review Topic: cis_topic
Event Description
Review Date : October 31, 2018
Embassy Review : My wife and step-daughter sent their AOS applications in July, had their biometrics appointments in August, and their interviews were scheduled in mid-September. I drove to the office twice just to make sure I knew how to get there. It is very easy to get to from the Baltimore Beltway and I-95. There is ample, free parking available.

Our appointment was scheduled for 7:30. We arrived at 7am and there was already a line of 10-15 people ahead of us going through security. After security, a gentleman at a desk told us to wait in line in the main sitting area to check in. Following another short line and wait, we gave our interview letters to a man at a computer who printed out a ticket with a letter and number. We received the ticket at 7:17am. I have no idea what the ticket numbers were for because everyone was called to their interviews by name. There are two doors - one at each side of the room - and immigration officers would come out and call names. Some used the intercom and others didn't. There were several families waiting with attorneys. The attorneys didn't seem to be much help as they seemed as unsure about what was going on as their clients!

The officer called my wife's name at 8am. My wife, step-daughter, and I followed him to an office. He swore us in, reviewed our identification documents, and took my wife's fingerprints. (I don't remember if my 8-year-old step-daughter needed to do this.) The officer proceeded to go through my wife's AOS application line by line. Some items he read word-for-word and others he paraphrased. Sometimes he would ask questions about the answers she provided. He then asked every "Yes/No" question and also paraphrased some of those questions.

We provided joint bank statements, insurance policies (health, auto, and home), beneficiary letters, 2 months of my pay stubs, photos, etc.

Looking at the bank statements, he asked my wife the name of the grocery store we shop at . . . she responded with the name of the store we go to every Saturday, but the officer was inquiring about the store I go to for milk, bread, and other things during the week. I explained why she gave a different answer.

Looking at the insurance policy, he asked how many cars we had. She said 3. He asked why the insurance policy only had 2 cars on it. Again, I spoke up and said that I insure the 2 cars on the policy we provided. My daughter and car #3 is insured on my ex-wife's policy.

He asked us each to identify people in the photos we provided. He also asked my wife:

- Have you met your husband's family? How do you communicate with them?
- Where was your wedding?
- How did you meet?
- Who cooks dinner each night?
- What is your husband's favorite food? He asked me if she cooks it for me.

He asked me:

- Have I met my wife's family? Are they happy that we are together?
- How did I meet my wife?
- Did I expect to begin a relationship with her when we first met?
- Why didn't I apply for a social security number for our step-daughter. (I said that a K-2 is not eligible for an SSN until they receive their EAD. He told me I was wrong and that she was eligible when she arrived in the U.S. This is contrary to everything I have read on Visa Journey, though.)

Next, he reviewed my step-daughter's application. After a LOT of paper shuffling, he asked her:

- What is your name?
- How old are you?
- What is your mother's husband's name?
- What time does your father leave for work? I interrupted and said that I leave an hour before she wakes up.
- Where do you go to school?
- What grade are you in?
- Do you like the United States? Do you want to stay?

My wife translated most of the questions for her, but she responded to all of them in English.

Lots more paper shuffling and jotting notes down on the applications. I think that consumed at least 15 minutes! After about 1 1/4 hours he said that "there is no reason for me not to approve your application," however he needed to conduct a final review before submitting his approval. He then explained that they would receive their green cards about 1 week after approval. They would need to apply to remove conditions 90 days before their 2-year cards' expiration. My wife could apply for citizenship in 3 years (1 year into the 10-year green card's term). My step-daughter would not have to go through the naturalization process to become a citizen as long has her mother became a citizen before she turned 18.

My wife and step-daughter each received a generic letter saying their applications required further review and we should receive a decision by mail within 120 days. I am told that this is standard for all interviews at the Baltimore office. Their applications were approved 6 days after the interview.


Harassment Level : 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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