Ok, so i thought I would "finalize" this thread when Tammy got her permanent green card. So here we are , she did.
To celebrate she actually booked (and paid for) a little holiday for us to vegas next week.
She found a deal there and back on Virgin like 100 bucks apiece? Wow.
So its a winner. Got a bud to come and house sit Gendut for a few days.
And I thought I'd talk about the benefits of getting citizenship versus just having the permanent green card.
So fees have been going up the roof and they will continue to rise because...get this. Smart move actually. The US govt is essentially broke.
Printing money like its out of fashion.
So someone decided that the 19,000 federal employees working with Immigration should be paid by FEES that we pay when we want a visa, green card, citizenship ,etc.
So i remember in the last century when i first got married (seriously it was the last century).
We mozied on down to the AIT and filled in a form and i remember i was something like 160 bucks? Something like that.
Then she flew out to the US of A and stayed a few weeks with some buds and she got her permanent green card in the mail. We were NOT even married two years but I dont remember her getting a 2 year "practice" green card and then a 10 year? But maybe im mistaken, its been awhile.
Don't know why she wanted a green card? We never did go live in the USA , her and i> And she never went to live there herself after we divorced either. Opting for China.
At least it was no hassle at all to get a green card through marriage then? AT least it wasn't for us.
This time around, its been a freakin NIGHTMARE and NAIL bITING EXPERIENCE.
Fees something like this:
I 129F $340
Visa fee paid to US embassy $265
And some smaller charge for the doc visit for simple physical
$1070 for the Green card application (2 year) I-485
That included an interview and biometrics.
$590 for the real green card (10 year) I-751
biometrics again !
thats $2,265 at current fee rates.
Then its currently $680 dollars to apply for citizenship
Which we plan to do because we already have all that paperwork that we can use . The same ones we used all thoughout the process from visa application to 2 year then 10 year green card .
So may as well. Because green card fees will go up in future. Ten years from now, who knows how much that will be.
Also her and me having the same passport means same situation regarding visas if we go somewhere.
For example as an Indo citizen, she can stay in TAiwan 30 days if she applies online first and only because she has a US green card.
For Japan she will have to apply online as well for a 15 day stay , and again only because she has a US green card.
For Europe she will need a visa , but i don't.
Also green card holders should not stay abroad more then six months at a time, otherwise when you apply for citizenship you have to kind of explain yourself.
Green card holders can LOSE their US permanent residency by prolonged stay abroad. The Green Card is really NOT permanent without conditions.
So best to get her citizenship, then we can dispense with all that.
She can travel where I can travel. If we stay abroad for years we can come back to the USA.
And we don't have to report any change of address that green card holders have to .
Lots of benefits.
We can't apply until second quarter next year though because she has to have been a green card holder for 3 years at least to apply for citizenship.
Green card holders NOT through marriage have to live in the USA for five years at least.
So maybe we will extend this thread till she gets her citizenship.
And when she gets that next year, it will actually not be that long a process?
From first applying for a fiancee visa to citizenship would only be from 2012 to 2017 ?! Five years total. Not bad really.
Going from needing a visa to just even visit to citizenship?
She will have to work more on Engerish and Civics. Funny the civics test? They say most Americans (myself included) will probably fail the civics test if we were to take it cold turkey right now?
Ok, so Icon and the maybe one other person reading this thread can still have tammy and tommy adventures to read for a bit longer.