Waaaaaaaait … I was telling a friend about the Great Immigration Adventure, and when I got to the part about whistling past the National Visa Center graveyard, I had a brain fart. I was going to be in Dublin in two weeks (the June trip). What if … what if I just walk in to the U.S. Embassy and … ask?
It doesn’t hurt to ask, right? And I have firsthand experience that “Sometimes Things Work Out” if you ask. I promulgated this theory to our attorney, and was astonished, a little, when she said she thought it was a good idea. “Let’s meet next week. I’ll coach you on what to say and give you the files,” she said.
Then, as it turns out, that next week—the week before I left—the computer got unstuck, she was able to make the payment digitally, and it was acknowledged. That was 8 June 2015. So we abandoned our plan for me to go into the embassy and beg.
Seven weeks later—the wheels of the Immigration Service grind exceedingly slow—on 28 July, Gerry received this message from the National Visa Center:
All documentation necessary to complete the National Visa Center’s processing of your case has been received. As soon as an interview date has been scheduled, the applicant, petitioner and attorney (if applicable) will be notified.
The applicant should NOT make any travel arrangements, sell property, or give up employment until the US Embassy or Consulate General has issued a visa.
The US Embassy or Consulate General may require additional documentation at the time of the interview.
So … this is good news. But don’t get too excited—we must wait, now, for that interview to be scheduled. And here’s what our Internet friends at Hammond Law Group say:
Once your immigrant visa (green card) case is finished being processed by the (National Visa Center) NVC, you will receive a letter … Once the NVC has completed that process, it notifies the appropriate consulate that the case is ready to be scheduled for an interview, and sends this letter to the applicant advising the case has reached the point at which it is ready to be transferred to the consulate.
The interview is normally scheduled within 30 to 60 days after this letter is issued. The reason the NVC letter says do not make travel arrangements, sell property, or give up employment is that the NVC does not know when the consulate is going to schedule the interview, and does not want the applicant to think the interview will happen immediately. There is no guarantee the interview will happen that soon (not to mention another retrogression sets in, moving the dates back), so they don’t want the applicant giving up property or jobs, etc., until they are sure the interview is going to take place.
If you receive this letter and then do not receive an interview notice within 60 days, you should follow up with the NVC just to make sure you have not missed any communication from them about the interview.
Notice that part about the retrogression. We’ve already experienced one of those during our process.
Now, if you’re keeping track at home, sixty days from the time we received the letter puts us to 28 September—the day before I’m set to depart for Dublin for our wedding celebration on 3 October. Gerry could get an interview appointment while I’m on the plane back to Dublin.
After the party, we’re planning a little honeymoon in Donegal. It’s a five-hour drive from Dublin. We’re hoping, of course, that the interview will happen before I arrive. So we’re thinking good thoughts and hope you will too …
But we’re not going to speculate. If the interview gets set for time we’re scheduled to be in Donegal, we’ll just put Gerry on a regional airline in Donegal Town and he can go straight to the Embassy from the airport. If he “passes” the interview (and he will, of course), he’ll be given the provisional visa right then, on the spot.
So we’re moving forward … and we still don’t know a thing! Not a thing! It’s a little like being stuck in the tar pit … 🙂