I have been communicating with someone in my local TECO office. Now I am getting ready to mail in my documents. I was told just to send it to TECO, not to a specific person. I know in some TECO offices, the person you’ve been communicating with gives you their own TECO email address, and you can direct questions to them. Do you know if TECO assigns you to a specific person if you have been talking with someone? Would it be that whoever opens the packet from me will work on it, or would TECO give it to the person I have been talking with on the phone? (I would prefer it go to the person I’ve been talking with.)
I think each office is different. I would say if they told you to do something, the best course would be to follow their instructions. If you wrote “Attn: xx xx” on the envelope though, would that contradict what they told you? It’s a bit ambiguous.
Last April, when I managed (I goofed up) not to send my passport to Houston TECO to get the special-entry visa I’d been approved for, I asked if it would be faster if I submitted my passport to the only other TECO office open at that time, Washington DC.
I was advised not to do that, that each office is different and that DC could make me start over completely; moreover that DC could conceivably add to, or change the list of requirements the TECO office in Houston had.
I was told that each TECO officer is given wide discretion to create entry requirements specific to their US region. Since Houston is very dissimlar to DC, it followed that submitting my app to DC could be a very bad idea indeed.
I just followed the directions I got from Houston to the letter. It took ten or more days longer, but in the end it all worked out. I, too, would advise you to follow whatever directions you get.
Thank you both. I am seeing that each TECO office might do things differently. I am now wondering if within a TECO office, the various staff members might do things very differently and give you different requirements.
So that said it follows that yes, you are assigned to a specific TECO officer. However, it’s also the case that TECO employees roll up to that officer and thus are somewhat interchangeable.
My experience is that yes, in Houston you are assigned to a specific person who deals with you and your submitting the documents they need. They are flexible, though. In my case my “person” was out of the office when I needed them to add my visa physically to my US passport in time to meet my flight out of LA.
My case was (very) closely, and somewhat reluctantly (took an email by me cc’d to my Taiwanese wife), handed off to the officer in charge of Houston, and my visa was approved/created by that officer instead of the person I’d dealt with the previous month.
That’s entirely possible. TECO has never been known for its consistency.
I wouldn’t doubt it, but I think the lack of consistency is due to the heterogeneity inherent in US demographics rather than to any inadequacies of Taiwan. The Taiwanese I deal with in Houston were really really good people.
My experience was that TECO officers in the USA were very fair, very open. Not a fan of bureacracy, but if I were I’d hold up TECO in Houston as exemplar.
I don’t think so. It’s not just limited to the US.
The Taiwanese I deal with in Houston were really really good people.
I didn’t say they weren’t. I think it’s an institutional issue.
That’s interesting. I was only discussing the variation in requirements I heard about regarding Houston vs Washington DC. Never considered even the possibility that it could be a systemic diplomatic problem in Taiwanese government, a problem with consequences outside the USA.
I must admit, though, that I did pick up a sense of rivalry between Houston and DC. Not between Houston and Chicago, mind - just DC.
When I mailed in my stuff to TECO SF a guy called and said he needed the original or notarized copy of something and while I still mailed the requested stuff to TECO SF, i stuffed the things he wanted in another envelope addressed to him by name.
@Bojack, thank you. Do you know if your case was assigned to the TECO officer who opened your packet and was in the office that day, or to the person you spoke with on the phone before mailing the packet even if she or he was out of the office on the day your packet arrives?
Thank you all. Interesting about the rivalry
@Fill, thank you. Did he give you his full name, or did write Ms. Lee / Mr. Lee. etc. My person only gave me a last name. And did you put which department of TECO?
My understanding was that my case was assigned to a TECO officer personally, although that officer was not named.
The work, though, was assigned to a TECO employee who answered to said TECO officer. I always talked to that employee; never once to the officer.
I never once got the impression that the officer’s judgment wasn’t key, though. Probably important to you.
@bojack, thank you. So is this what you mean - you emailed or spoke with a TECO employee prior to mailing the packet (which was not addressed to the employee). Afterwards, that employee contacted you to finish the process.
Yes. The address I was given was the address of TECO in Houston.
The same employee contacted me each time. That employee even gave me a personal phone number to use (which was picked up every single time I called it), but I was never given a personal address.
It was a crazy time, at the height of international freak-outs over covid19 and before the US had realized that covid19 was not the national emergency we were led to believe it was.
At any rate, yes, the TECO Houston person I’d first contacted was indeed the person who finished up the process.
@bojack, oh that’s good. Thank you for letting me know. I hope I get my same person also. I hope he will give me a phone number that only goes to him.
I just wrote To : Mr Chang --Passport on the sealed envelope that was inside the main envelope addressed to teco.
my check was cashed on 8/18, passport issued 8/27, entry permit issued 9/4 and it just came in today if the time reference helps at all.
@Fill, thank you very much! Congratulations to you. Sounds like it took about 4 weeks from the time you mailed.
Did you send a personal check? Apparently some TECO’s require cashier’s checks/money orders, and some TECO’s accept personal checks.