2016 How to apply for Spouse Visa CR1 Faq 04

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http://www.visacoach.com/cr1-visa.html If your spouse is not a citizen of the United States and you plan to bring her to live in the United States, then you must file a petition with USCIS on behalf of your spouse. After the petition is approved, your spouse must obtain a visa issued at a U.S. Embassy or consulate abroad. This visa is called a CR-1 visa.. The following is an explanation of the procedures and steps needed to be followed.
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Two departments of the federal government are involved with the processing of Spouse Visas.
USCIS (US Citizenship and Immigration Services) (part of homeland security) and the US Department of State.

USCIS handles the initial processing of the application Here, Stateside,

And then the Department of State will first process the case at their National Visa Center, NVC
in New Hampshire, then forward the case for final processing at the American Embassy
or consulate overseas in the country where your spouse lives.

First you the US citizen (or lawful permanent resident) submit your application to USCIS.

Spouse Visa Cases are sent to Chicago or Phoenix (depending on where you live), sorted, then
distributed (sometimes randomly) around the USA to 5 different processing centers

USCIS sends you a receipt. On that receipt is shown your case number.
The first three letters indicate which center has been assigned to the case.
Historically, some of the centers, notably WAC California, work faster then others,
and SRC Texas has been the slowest.

But you don’t have a choice. Its the work of the initial sorting clerk that
determines where the case goes. The sorting is mostly geographic,
but there seems to be a lot of randomness as well.

USCIS examines the application, and reviews that the required civil documents,
such as birth certificates, marriage certificates, divorce decrees, visa photos, etc have been included.

USCIS verifys that you are eligible to apply.

The FBI gets involved and does a criminal backgound check on the American.

At this stage if USCIS finds items missing or problems, they
either deny outright (if you really messed up the application)
or issue an RFE (request for evidence) listing what is missing and giving you
about a month to fix the issue. When satisfied, USCIS approves your application (at least as far as USCIS is concerned).

The case is passed over to the Department of State.

The Department of State has a processing center in New Hampshire, called the
National Visa Center or NVC.

NVC takes over processing.

First they choose which consulate
conducts further processing of your case. They assign a new
case number that identifies the consulate, and
The new case number, starts with three letters that indicate which consulate is assigned. Via email they contact both you and your spouse,
requesting first that she assigns you as her “Agent”, submits an online
application form, and finally asking for two separate payments.

The first payment is for processing of your affidavit of support, the other for
processing of her visa.

Once payments have been made, you mail a packet of civil documents,
police clearances and and financial evidences to NVC. I call this
the “mini petition”.

NVC reviews your “mini petition”, and once satisfied that all required materials
have been provided, notifies you that your spouse’s interview has been
scheduled at the overseas consulate, and confirms time, date, and what
documents need be hand carried to the interview.

Then NVC ships the file via diplomatic pouch to the consulate in her country.

It takes about 2 weeks for the case file to arrive and be entered into the overseas
consulate’s system.Once there, the consulate contacts your spouse, with their instructions.