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July/August I-130 DCF filers come here!

July/August I-130 DCF filers come here!

Old Jan 21st 2011, 2:06 pm
  #301  
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Default Re: July/August I-130 DCF filers come here!

Originally Posted by C_C View Post
No, I just sent it recorded delivery, so I was able to track it online and I saw it was delivered on the 3rd of December.
Thanks C_C, very helpful as always! Good luck to you for Feb 1st
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Old Jan 21st 2011, 4:42 pm
  #302  
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Default Re: July/August I-130 DCF filers come here!

Originally Posted by Colobound View Post
Thanks C_C, very helpful as always! Good luck to you for Feb 1st
Thanks
Good luck to you too
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Old Jan 21st 2011, 8:49 pm
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Default Re: July/August I-130 DCF filers come here!

My H received his passport with the visa and the mysterious brown envelope today, so that's it really. Phew!
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Old Jan 25th 2011, 9:38 am
  #304  
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Default Re: July/August I-130 DCF filers come here!

Great news for BoydandCaesar

Krosfyah, best of luck for today!! Do let us know how it all went!!

Only a week left for my interview and I'm getting nervous
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Old Jan 25th 2011, 1:15 pm
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Default Re: July/August I-130 DCF filers come here!

I am happy to report....success!

Just back from my interview and happily it all went smoothly. As others have done, i’ll try to provide a blow by blow account of my morning, as there were some interesting things to report. I found it useful reading these in my months of prep, hopefully others will find it useful to read my report.

Arrived at 7.30am for an 8am appointment after dropping keys and phone off at Gould’s pharmacy. I left my house keys too (even thought i had no fob on them) as the guy in the pharmacy said he thought house keys were ok, he said yes they are, then he said, i am pretty sure, and then he said, no im sure they are ok. Well after that uncertainty LOL and after remembering Alastair L’s experience of his personal hedge storage method for his keys, i left the keys with Gould’s anyway - better safe than sorry. It’s all secure in a sealed bag so it’s safe.

At 7.30am there were approx 30-40 people in line. Line started moving at 7.45am ish, and was inside at 8am i think. Called relatively quickly (i was I-903 which meant 3rd Immigrant visa. LOADS of N numbers are called while you wait. In fact, i tried to read while waiting and it’s hard as the computer announcement is constantly calling N numbers (it was up to about 200 and something by the time i left!). I was surprised at how nervous i was going in. I had prepared very well (i thought so anyway) but still, it's a little nerve wracking while you wait.

To give you guys some back ground – we don’t have kids, we don't own property and while my wife had tried to get a job through a transfer to the NY office – it hadn’t worked and she had been rejected. She had intended to come temporarily for 1 year (as a student in 2003) and she was still in in 2011. We didn't have an apartment and are going to live with in-laws until we get sorted - common enough but as many of you know, not ideal from proving domicile intent. We actually found an online NY state lease wording and just printed it, filling it specifics of address, and putting my in-laws down. They obviously weren't able to sign it but i wanted to show something more formal. In the end, i didn't even need it! Read on to find out more....

All in all, i wanted to prove we were serious about moving back and re-establishing domicile, as i felt our case was conducive to her being seen as really being settled in the UK now, so we prepared 2 covering letters to sit atop our evidence as below:

1. An “affidavit of savings", showing our cash savings and signed by us both (simply had 4 line items for each checking/savings account we had in the UK/US showing our assets)
2. An “affidavit of domilce/intent to leave the UK”. This was an idea i had to both use as a checklist for me in the interview, but also clearly outline our evidence to the conoff so they could pick what they wanted.

The details are listed below, it was a simple cover letter as per below:



Affidavit of US Domicile evidence Date: 23.01.11


Although I currently work for XXXXXXXXXXXXXX and reside in London, i moved here temporarily as a student in 2003 to complete a Masters programme at the XXXXXXXXXXXXX

I have taken the following steps to show i have not relinquished my domicile in the United States.


1. New York job search emails, job interview confirmation and resume to transfer back to <company> New York office
2. Voting record with my US domicile address
3. Recent student loan statement with my US domicile address
4. <bank> credit card with US domicile address
5. New York drivers license, showing my US domicile address and which was renewed recently
6. Lease agreement, ready to be signed pending successful visa application


Additionally, we have begun to make arrangements to relinquish our UK residency, as outlined below:

1. Letter from our current landlady showing we are preparing to leave the UK to move back home to New York
2. Shipping quotations for our items to be shipped to New York
3. Closing down our UK financial commitments (closed share dealing account)
4. Chase Manhattan checking bank account set up by my husband in 2010 with funds transferred in anticipation of the move back to New York
5. Investment CD account set up (Chase Manhattan) as a means to begin transfer of UK financial savings


I, <name>, intend in good faith to re-establish my domicile in the United States no later than the date of the intending immigrant (my husband’s) admission or adjustment of status.


Signed




So anyway, im called to the first window at about 8.15am. I do the usual stuff – passport, pay the fee, come back and present marriage, police and birth certificates (and their copies).

Then the interesting part – she asks for the affidavit of support (i-864) and “the associated evidence”. I said “what evidence, other than the tax return do you specifically need here?” - i honestly wasn't 100% what i needed to show her - and she was trying to find the words to say “assets” (she was saying “wage stuff and bank accounts”) or something.

I showed her the cover note to detail the financial savings and she said, “yes thats it”. She also said did my sponsor have a job and i said no but i did have evidence to show she had been looking, had had an interview and had been unsuccessful but she said no that doesn't count (GULP! ). I then thought i better be a little proactive here, so showed (and talked her through) my cover letter showing the key items of sponsor’s intent to domicile and the additional points about relinquishing residency. She said “show me the evidence of the bottom stuff, the top stuff is irrelevant”.

Well, that REALLY though me! Irrelevant?! She doesn’t even want to see the domicile re-establishment proof WTF?! It threw me so much that i put my pack of domicile evidence into the back of my folder and later when i sat back down, had a mild panic when i couldn’t find it while waiting for my second interview with the con off as i was sure i would need it!

Anyhoo, so she took it all then told me to wait. I waited (nervously at this point, as i was thrown!) for approx 45mins. I tried to concentrate on my book but nerves and the constant N numbers being called out was pretty taxing.

Anyway i was finally called about 10am back to a window and my con off (who was very nice) simply said:

Her: “Is your wife still looking for a job in New York?”
Me: “Yes, absolutely, i have evidence here of the job search if you need it?”
Her: “no that’s ok.

Her: "Where does your wife live?"
Me: "London"

Here we go, i thought, domicile evidence at the ready....


But no....she just threw in a REALLY weird question:

Her: "Is your wife still intending on moving to the US?"
Me: (thinking i misheard) "Pardon?"
Her: <repeats qu>
Me: "Oh yes, absolutely"

How weird is THAT? Was she trying to catch me out? How on earth (WHY on earth?) would i be trying to get a PR visa through my wife if she was staying in London? I can't even enter and activate it without her as my sponsor being there - physically - first (or at least when i go out) anyway can i? I just seriously got a little thrown by that qu.

Her: "Ok, when are you guys thinking of moving?”
Me: “Likely to be April”
Her: "Well, everything looks in order, im going to approve your visa”
Me: "Really?! Uh...ok! Great, thank you!”

And that, ladies and gents, is what it came down to. After 5 months of waiting, form filling and document collecting, it was all over in less than 60 seconds. I think it was about 45 seconds, no joke. No evidence of redomiciling was needed at all.

Now honestly, having thought about this, i think this could be down to a few things. First, my wife works for an American investment bank. This MAY have contributed to her being technically “re-domiciled” automatically. If you look at a post i put up months back, i was unsure if under the law, she was able to claim domicile because she is “Employed by a US firm or corporation engaged in whole or in part with the development of foreign trade and commerce with the US”, which according to the USCIS automatically domiciles you in the US. Personally, this to me was a grey area.

I think generally though, we were seen as "low risk". We had enough assets (without going into specifics, it’s a comfortable sum over the minimum assets required). I had no “marks” on me from any convictions, overstaying of visas etc. I think generally we may just have been seen as a “low risk” category. However, i must admit, even i was (pleasantly) surprised at the lack of questions!

I was seriously ON THE VERGE of saying to her “wow that was quick. So um, how comes you didn’t ask me about domicile questions and evidence? I thought that was a big part of this process these days? Can you let me know if the focus has changed as i’d like to let my pals on britishexpats know” LOL – ok so i wasn’t going to mention that last part, but was going to ask the question. But you know what? I was dying for a pee, i was just relieved it was all over, and i didn't want to pester her - and frankly – i wanted to get out of the embassy because i could still hear N numbers being called and it was something akin to Chinese water torture!

All i can say is – OVER PREPARE – but as someone else said, be prepared for it to be incredibly simple and quick with no need for all your masses of preparations. However, i know i was reassured within myself i had got all the evidence i could lay my hands on should i have needed it. As it was i didn’t and it was great to have all gone so smoothly!

I really hope that helps others out. Lastly, if you’re still reading this far(!) can i just say a HUGE thank you to all those who answered my qu’s on here, and in particular the mod’s who tirelessly help out, and again – in particular – to meauxana who i think is absolutely the empitome of someone who i was looking for when starting this process – kind, friendly, knowledgeable, and never ceasing to be of constructive help throughout – thank you meax, couldn’t have done it without you!

Good luck to C_C and everyone else – and remember – you WILL be nervous! I was, it is the culmination of much antagonising after all, and no matter how much you prepare you will get a curve ball potentially, but be calm, breathe and just deal with it. Prepare, get evidence, lay things out clearly (but not obsessively and excessively – these people see hundreds of people each week, they want things concise and clear) and check things as many times as you need to – you probably won't need to, but if it helps you feel better, do it.

Now the REAL challenge begins – getting mentally and physically ready to make the leap LOL!

Last edited by krosfyah; Jan 25th 2011 at 1:33 pm.
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Old Jan 25th 2011, 1:51 pm
  #306  
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Default Re: July/August I-130 DCF filers come here!

Wohooo, first of all, congrats!!!
I had no doubt you were going to be successful!!

Sounds like it went smoothly, and to be absolutely honest with you, maybe it would have been even simpler if you hadn't volunteered information, and had only answered her exact questions
But hey, it's the result that counts

Re domicile: I think it's on a case-by-case basis. Some people in the past have been grilled on that (I still remember Ginblossom's story!), whereas other people, even without an established US domicile, have not even been asked.
From what I read on this and on other forums, London is relatively lenient about domicile compared to other Consulates that take a very strict approach. That doesn't mean to say that you shouldn't go well-prepared
And of course if you're seen as a "high risk" case, you'll get grilled more!

Best of luck from now on and happy moving!

P.S. Did they tell you when to expect to get your passport back with the visa? It used to be 3-5 working days from the interview, then this went up to 7-10 (working?) days recently, but from what BoydandCaesar reported, they got theirs within the original timeframe of 3-5 days. So I'm a little confused
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Old Jan 25th 2011, 1:59 pm
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Default Re: July/August I-130 DCF filers come here!

Thanks C_C, and i absolutely agree - it's on a case by case basic, and you never really know what to expect until you get there and start talking to them (which i think why it's a little nerve-inducing as you don't really know what to expect).

I didn't really want to volunteer anything, but when i asked specifically what evidence the first lady wanted to see, and she had trouble explaining and seemed non-commital to what i should be providing, i thought i would help her out . I'm glad i did as she took all my relinquishing the UK evidence and put it in my file to give to the conoff, so no doubt my conoff had a look through that before i spoke to her. I think if i hadn't volunteered it, that first lady frankly wouldn't have asked me for anything else, so i thought i would just give her what i expected to have to provide anyway.

The con off quoted the 7-10 days, the courier company quoted 3-5 so go figure LOL! I will let you know, apparently it's all trackable online.
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Old Jan 25th 2011, 2:26 pm
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Default Re: July/August I-130 DCF filers come here!

Congrats krosfyah! I can't believe how straightforward it all was for you. My husband's interview is on Friday at 10am...we are totally nervous and I was half-expecting you to come back with some horror story. So glad you didn't!!
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Old Jan 25th 2011, 8:06 pm
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Default Re: July/August I-130 DCF filers come here!

Originally Posted by krosfyah View Post
Lastly, if you’re still reading this far(!) can i just say a HUGE thank you to all those who answered my qu’s on here, and in particular the mod’s who tirelessly help out, and again – in particular – to meauxana who i think is absolutely the empitome of someone who i was looking for when starting this process – kind, friendly, knowledgeable, and never ceasing to be of constructive help throughout – thank you meax, couldn’t have done it without you!
I almost wasn't! But I'm so glad I did.. Congratulations to you, and thank you for the acknowledgment, which I really needed today. (but I think you probably would've figured it out w/out me <g>)

About the domicile, I have one argument to throw back at you. You say you overprepared, as evidenced by the fact that they didn't ask for your evidence.
BUT, they knew you had it. You attached it to a sworn document that states everything you're presenting is true. They don't have to run down every evidence you offer, they are taking you at your word (note the one question you were asked).

Remember that Ginblossom was our one-off exception or occasional bobble; most cases are that straight forward, and there is no harm in the activities you did do ahead of time.. they have to be done sooner or later.

So on that note, here's your next wiki entry: Immigrant Visa Arrival. It covers packing, travel, Customs forms and what happens when you arrive.
Safe travels and soft landings to you!
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Old Jan 25th 2011, 8:20 pm
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Default Re: July/August I-130 DCF filers come here!

Originally Posted by meauxna View Post
So on that note, here's your next wiki entry: Immigrant Visa Arrival. It covers packing, travel, Customs forms and what happens when you arrive.

In several months (I hope!) I too will be flying to America in the same situation as the others in this thread.


I understand that the I-94W card is not required, but is the ESTA in this instance? There is nothing in the link about it.

I am not trying to get out of paying the £9 / $14, but I'm simply curious if the Immigrant Visa 'over-rides' the use of the ESTA?

Last edited by Brucky; Jan 25th 2011 at 8:23 pm.
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Old Jan 25th 2011, 8:32 pm
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Default Re: July/August I-130 DCF filers come here!

Originally Posted by Brucky View Post
In several months (I hope!) I too will be flying to America in the same situation as the others in this thread.


I understand that the I-94W card is not required, but is the ESTA in this instance? There is nothing in the link about it.

I am not trying to get out of paying the £9 / $14, but I'm simply curious if the Immigrant Visa 'over-rides' the use of the ESTA?
Yes, the Immigrant Visa (any visa) overrides the Visa Waiver Program (and its required ESTA approval).
ESTA is *only* for the VWP. The VWP is *only* for visits of 90 days or less.

You will have the Big Ticket. And we'll get lots of fees from you for other stuff.
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Old Jan 25th 2011, 8:34 pm
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Default Re: July/August I-130 DCF filers come here!

Originally Posted by meauxna View Post
Yes, the Immigrant Visa (any visa) overrides the Visa Waiver Program (and its required ESTA approval).
ESTA is *only* for the VWP. The VWP is *only* for visits of 90 days or less.

You will have the Big Ticket. And we'll get lots of fees from you for other stuff.
Thanks.
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Old Jan 25th 2011, 8:35 pm
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Default Re: July/August I-130 DCF filers come here!

Originally Posted by meauxna View Post
I almost wasn't! But I'm so glad I did.. Congratulations to you, and thank you for the acknowledgment, which I really needed today. (but I think you probably would've figured it out w/out me <g>)

About the domicile, I have one argument to throw back at you. You say you overprepared, as evidenced by the fact that they didn't ask for your evidence.
BUT, they knew you had it. You attached it to a sworn document that states everything you're presenting is true. They don't have to run down every evidence you offer, they are taking you at your word (note the one question you were asked).

Remember that Ginblossom was our one-off exception or occasional bobble; most cases are that straight forward, and there is no harm in the activities you did do ahead of time.. they have to be done sooner or later.

So on that note, here's your next wiki entry: Immigrant Visa Arrival. It covers packing, travel, Customs forms and what happens when you arrive.
Safe travels and soft landings to you!
Brilliant, i was just about to start searching for that link...helpful to the end LOL!

USAatw and C_C best of luck guys, i honestly think you guys have nothing to worry about, you'll both be fine

I'm sure i will have 101 other qu's over the coming months, but today's been a good day and it's time to rest, finish the last of my beer and eat the Baby Ruth i bought from Gould's and drink a nice cuppa
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Old Jan 27th 2011, 1:15 pm
  #314  
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Default Re: July/August I-130 DCF filers come here!

Originally Posted by krosfyah View Post
So anyway, im called to the first window at about 8.15am. I do the usual stuff – passport, pay the fee, come back and present marriage, police and birth certificates (and their copies).
:
Congratulations! Can I just ask..what fee did you have to pay? I thought the $420 I sent off with then I-130 application covered the fees?
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Old Jan 27th 2011, 1:28 pm
  #315  
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Default Re: July/August I-130 DCF filers come here!

Originally Posted by AyePod View Post
Congratulations! Can I just ask..what fee did you have to pay? I thought the $420 I sent off with then I-130 application covered the fees?
Unfortunately this isn't the only fee in the whole process.
The $420 fee was just to cover processing of the I-130 package.
Assuming that your I-130 is approved (and it should - the vast majority are), then the intending immigrant will subsequently have to pay:
-£200 for a medical at Knitsbridge Doctors in London
-$404 for the processing of the immigrant visa on the day of their interview (they accept $$ or ££ currency)
-the fee for the Embassy courier who will return their passport with the visa (standard service starts at £14.50).
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