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EAD experience in Tampa - a little long

EAD experience in Tampa - a little long

Old Jan 31st 2001, 1:30 am
  #1  
\John\
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My fiancee arrived in the U.S. at Atlanta on December 17, 2000, shortly after Atlanta
ceased to issue the temporay EAD. Instead of an EAD or even a stamp, they gave her an
I-765 form (Rev. 04-25-95) and told her to take it to the Tampa INS office to get the
temporary EAD.

When she told me about her experience the next morning, I checked the timeline for
Tampa to issue an EAD, 90-120 days. I thought it would be a waste of time to apply for
a separate EAD since we would apply for AOS during that period and she had no
immediate plans to work. We went ahead with our plans and got married a week later on
December 23, 2000.

When we ran into problems getting a social security number, I did a lot of research on the
net and found the INS operating instructions said the admitting officer was supposed to
stamp the I-94 "work authorized" not only for her, but for her K-2 daughter as well. We
got a SSN for my wife but not for her daughter. After a couple of phone calls to the INS,
I decided it was worth a try to go to the Tampa INS office to see if we could get
temporary EAD's for both my wife and stepdaughter.

I downloaded the latest version of the I-765 form (Rev. 10/02/2000) from the net and
headed off to Tampa. We arrived at 9:15am and were surprised to find the line on the
outside of the building. We finally got inside at 10:30am, given a number and ushered into
the waiting room for appointments (an "over-flow" waiting area). We were still waiting for
our number to be called at noon time when we were informed they would be taking a lunch
break for 45-60 minutes.

Our number was called at 1:00pm and we went to the "counter?" area where we stood in line
to get another number. This new number was based on the nature of our business with INS -
people filing applications were given one number while those renewing cards were given a
different number.

When we got to the window to get our number we explained we were there to get the 90-day
EAD. The lady on the other side of the window asked if were we married and we replied
"yes". She then asked if we were not applying for AOS to which we replied we were not
prepared to file AOS at the time. She said something to the effect "...well, I wish you
were" but started to give us an I-765 form anyway and it was stamped "no fee". I
explained we had already completed the forms and she gave us our new number and told us
to have a seat.

We were called to the window at 2:30pm and again explained we wanted to get the temporary
EAD. The lady on the other side of the window again asked if we were married to which we
again said "yes". She then told us that my now wife was not eligible for the 90-day EAD
because she was no longer a K-1 but "pending AOS" instead and would have to file for the
EAD with the AOS application. I tried to debate this with her, but she insisted it was no
use to argue the point with her because she had instructions to follow. She did get an
inspector however who told us the same thing in no uncertain terms. Neither of these two
people were especially "friendly" and did not attempt to apologize for us having waited
needlessly.

We left the Tampa office both disappointed and angry. I wondered why the first lady we
encountered went ahead and gave us a number after she knew the exact nature of our
situation and what would have happened if she was the person behind the counter. I also
left with the impression that if we had not already been married then they would have
issued my wife the EAD.

The moral of the story is - if you arrive on a K-1 visa, make sure to apply for the
temporary EAD BEFORE you get married!!! I'm not sure how this would work at other INS
offices around the country but it seems to me that you can get the temporay EAD the same
day as a walk-in at the Tampa office.
 
Old Jan 31st 2001, 11:44 pm
  #2  
mjones
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>The moral of the story is - if you arrive on a K-1 visa, make sure to apply for the
>temporary EAD BEFORE you get married!!! I'm not sure how this would work at other INS
>offices around the country but it seems to me that you can get the temporay EAD the same
>day as a walk-in at the Tampa office.
>

Well, this is not exactly fresh advice.

(from the FAQ item 5.4) You can also go in person to a local INS office and attempt to get
the temporary work authorization stamp or EAD prior to getting married. Just walk in there
or call them on the phone and tell them you didn't get it at the POE. The newsgroup has
reported many successes by determined K1-ers who have done this.

I am still keeping track of all your progress. You are making very good reports!! MIke
 
Old Feb 1st 2001, 2:46 pm
  #3  
\John\
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Ummm, does it qualify as a "friendly reminder"? <grin>

Seriously, I must confess that while I studied the FAQs for information leading up to
getting the K-1 visa I haven't done nearly so well in finding out what to do AFTER the
visa has been executed (after all, my fiancee was supposed to get the EAD when she came
through Atlanta).

Thank you for this information Mike. It serves as a reminder to me that I should return to
the FAQs as we prepare to file for AOS.

And thanks again for your compliments and support too. I'll try to continue posting those
good reports. The best one I have at the moment is after a little more than a month, we
(wife, stepdaughter and I) are becoming a family. Regards, "John"

>
> Well, this is not exactly fresh advice.
>
> (from the FAQ item 5.4) You can also go in person to a local INS office and attempt to
> get the temporary work authorization stamp or EAD prior to getting married. Just walk in
> there or call them on the phone and tell them you didn't get it at the POE. The
> newsgroup has reported many successes by determined K1-ers who have done this.
>
> I am still keeping track of all your progress. You are making very good reports!! MIke
 

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