Step By Step: Denied CR1 or IR1 Spouse Visa
Below is how we work together:
1. I know all the questions USCIS have and all the questions the Department of State AND the Consulate have. I combined them into two proprietary questionnaires, one for you and one for your Spouse. I send these to you, to provide me with all the needed details about your backgrounds. I ask the questions early, so that we know EXACTLY where you stand, and that you are eligible for the whole Spouse Visa Process.
2. It is essential to glean as much information from the failed interview(s) as possible, so that we can estimate if Your Difficult Case is Winnable. I provide a third questionnaire, in order to help jog your fiance/spouse’s memory to develop a useful and complete transcript of the interview.
3. I also want to understand what the consulate saw, so ask you to send me a complete set of documents already submitted, and copies of correspondences with immigration.
4. I also have a questionnaire useful to help you write a letter describing the history of your relationship. I normally ask for it at a later stage, but will provide this to you at the start, again, so I can better understand what did the consulate “know” about your situation.
5. You and your Spouse complete the background questionnaires and return them to me
6. I carefully review your history, to develop a “game plan” and present it for your approval.
7. I closely audit your answers, looking for inconsistencies, gaps, mistakes, illogic, anything that “doesn’t look right”. Immigration doesn’t need much to become suspicious, so it is critically important that the information provided does not accidentally trigger alarm bells.
8. I work together with you and your Spouse until the questions asked by immigration have been answered fully, logically, and are consistent.
9. I use your information to prepare all the immigration forms, those needed at the initial submission stage, as well as drafts of the forms to be submitted much later at the National Visa Center (NVC) stage as well as for the Consulate interview.
10. I create for you a private, HOMEPage at VisaCoach.com. This is where you view the documents that are ready for your signatures, as well as personalized checklists, and instructions all personalized to your case. On the internet, you can access your HomePage from USA, your Spouse can access it from overseas, and while traveling.
Click here to view a Sample Private HomePage
11. At your HomePage, based upon my detailed review of your background details, I post for you a custom personalized check list of things to do, photos, civil documents, and various ways (that I have encountered over 36 years) to demonstrate the bona fides of your relationship. The check list is extensive. Not all items can be obtained by all couples. I categorize the list into three color coded priority levels. REQUIRED, HIGHLY RECOMMENDED, and RECOMMENDED.
12. Also I post at your HomePage Drafts of all of the forms and supporting letters that are needed during the process. These are provided for your review and confirmation.
13. Going through the personalized checklist I prepared for you, you should collect a stack of evidences, photos, correspondences, signed documents, civil documents needed for your petition. I call this your SHOEBOX. As soon as the shoebox is full, mail it me.
14. Once I get your shoebox I block off most of a day from my calendar, so I can quietly spread out, and examine each piece. I confirm all required civil documents and signed forms are present and legible, then check the items that demonstrate the “bona fides” of your relationship.
My plan is to “tell your story”, that of a genuine, bona fide couple, who deserves to be speedily reunited in the USA. I pick and choose those evidences that are the most persuasive and positive, and put aside those that do not help. I devote much time with your photos. A picture IS worth a thousand words. The minimum use of your photos is to prove a face to face meeting occurred. But the photos CAN do so much more. A few well chosen photos can create a solid impression of a bona fide, genuine relationship. My objective is to choose the RIGHT ones to help your case.
15. Earlier, I sent a questionnaire prompting with questions asking you to describe the “history of your courtship”. Now we “bring it up to date” (depending on how much time and activity has transpired since we began) and I use your answers to compose a compelling personal letter, addressed to immigration, to add a “human face” on to your petition. This should convince the most skeptical Consular Officer yours is a genuine relationship and merits prompt approval, and his “help” to swiftly bring “the two lovers” together.
This is also where we “EXPLAIN AWAY” the issues that caused denial, explaining in polite terms, why the consular officer made a mistake in his decision, explain why the confusion may have occurred, and explaining what the REAL situation is.
Should there be any other “out of the norm issues” or so called “red flags” with your history that might if misunderstood hurt your chances, we would also explain those situations in the letter, in order to “neutralize” their negative affect
16. I assemble all of your documents and evidences into an attractive, bound, tabbed, complete and compelling petition. Just like USCIS likes it. To see what one of my 100 to 150 page, Front Loaded petitions look like watch the video at
Click here to view a sample VisaCoach Presentation
I RUSH the petition to you via priority mail. A complete copy for your records is included.
17. The petition you receive has about a dozen (yellow flags), clearly showing where you should sign and date. I also fill in a facsimile of what the check made out to USCIS should look like, and confirm the address where to mail your petition and check.
18. I update your HomePage on the NEXT STEPS, on what you and your Spouse should do while waiting on USCIS’s approval. I provide detailed instructions on obtaining Police reports, and vaccinations as well as the list of 120 most likely interview questions for you to practice.
19. It is unusual for my clients to hear anything from USCIS but “thanks for your case” and “your case is approved”. Sometimes USCIS makes a request for more evidence. This is called an RFE. Should that occur, I draft the response and help you to provide what is needed, as quickly as possible.
20.Once USCIS approves, it takes about a month for NVC to start working on your case. During this time, I work with you to update background and financial details about you and your Spouse, then post to your private HomePage prepared forms for her to sign and mail to you, as well as your affidavit of support.
21. Next, your Spouse designates YOU as his/her agent, and you pay application and affidavit of support fees. I coach you on what to anticipate and what to do, and with my help to stay “on top” of this stage, my couples usually shave a month or more from their visa’s total processing time.
22. I prepare for you the “mini” petition for NVC, made up of your financial support documents, income proofs, civil documents, and forms prepared for her signature.
23. Once NVC is satisfied that all of your required documents are acceptable, they forward the case to the consulate for the FINAL interview. I update your HomePage, with completed forms for your Spouse to sign to take to the interview at the Consulate, detailed instructions on obtaining chest x-ray, blood tests and physicals at the embassy designated Panel Physician, how and where to pay fees, obtaining Police Certificates, and last minute details on preparing for the interview,
By Fred Wahl
the Visa Coach