This weekend we received Notices Of Action in the post regarding my applications for Adjustment of Status (leave to become a Conditional Resident in the US) and my Employment Authorisation. (posted December 29th 2003) We were expecting a long wait for this as we have to file via the Atlanta Local Office and they are hugely backlogged and are currently processing applications received in September 2003 for the Employment Document, and as far back as July 2001 for the AOS. However, it looks like change is afoot as my file has instead been transferred to the Missouri Service Centre (so I even have a receipt number that can be used to check status online) and they are saying it will take 30-90 days for the EAD and about 6 months for the AOS.
The receipt notices asked me to call the National Customer Service Helpline and arrange appointment times for fingerprinting and biometrics so I did that this morning. I phoned about twenty to nine and after a short wait was able to speak to an representative who, contrary to some of the helpline horror tales I’ve read about, was very nice and helpful and booked me into Atlanta for the first available appointment: March 4th at 9am. Sweet. Though the prospect of being fingerprinted fills me with sadness and I feel like a criminal, at least things are moving and this period of enforced unemployment should soon be over.
Actually, that reminds me, I was browsing one of the immigration forums the other day and read about an Irish guy who was applying for a US Visa and knew that as he had lived in the US for a few years previously he’d need a Police Check run over in the States. He was told that the FBI did this and that they required a fingerprint form completed. So he went down to his local bobbies and was met with much laughter, consternation and amusement when he requested they fingerprint him. Not surprisingly no one had ever asked them to be fingerprinted before.