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Old 25.05.2011, 01:12
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Help----Apply US Green card in Switzerland

Hellp everyone, here are my questions, please help, thanks!

I got married to my husband(US citizen) in Switzerland last year, and now we are thinking to apply the US green card for me. We live in Geneva, what kind of process should I go through? And which forms should we fill in?

The website of US embassy in Bern says that we need our marriage certificate but not the family book, where should I get it? And some documents need to be translated in English, who is qualified to do this?

Thank you so much in advance for helping us!

Beryl
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Old 25.05.2011, 08:24
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Hi,

I went through this with my wife. You should be able to the "international" version of your marriage certificate. Maybe that's what they mean. There weren't any documents that we needed translated from what I remember.

Good luck and be patient. It takes time (2-3 months) and the embassy won't tell you much at all while the process is going on but you should be fine and not have any problems.

Regards,
Dan
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Old 25.05.2011, 09:26
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Re: Help----Apply US Green card in Switzerland

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...we are thinking to apply the US green card for me. We live in Geneva, what kind of process should I go through?
I am American and in the process of getting my wife into the U.S. (not American). The process involves initiating the process with the I-130 (from your husband) and the G-325's of both... this requires plenty of documentation, including the marriage certificate, passports, and some sort of proof that you are actually together (signed affadavit, shared lease, etc.). After you submit the documents and have an interview (it is better to make an appointment for this) at Bern, they will send you an approval/disapproval in the mail within ~1 month. By the way, make sure to bring U.S. sized passport photos for both you and your husband.

The rest of the documents include the I-865 (affadavit of support: proof that you have enough money to live without welfare in the US - your husband will do this) and the DS230 (actual visa application). This also requires lots of documentation; they will send information on what you actually need.
Keep in mind that this second part (I-865 and DS-230) should be done when you are making plans to return to the US. You must have a domicile in the United States to complete these forms, and usually you need to have a job that is at least partially in the US. For my wife and myself, we were unable to file these documents until quite recently (after I got a job and an apartment).

After submitting these last documents, you will get a visa interview. Following visa approval, you can enter the US, where you will receive your residence permit (Green card).

I hope this helps. Between Switzerland and the US it is tough to say which country has more difficult paperwork. Best of luck!
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Old 25.05.2011, 10:37
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Going through the green card process in the US, and the C permit process here, I can tell you that 2 years, numerous requests for info they already had and nearly $1000 dollars vs 4 weeks and scanned in originals of documents emailed to my husband's secretary at the uni plus $44 for the Swiss entry visa, it was a lot easier to come here. I forget what I paid for the actual c permit itself.

Having said that, there are advantages to applying for permanent residency while you are here, it is supposed to be easier and take less time than if you adjust status In the US. My experiences in Bern were a lot nicer than the USCIS in Charlotte, NC.

Do you have to have the bizzare medical exam? In the US, you had to go to certain docs only, it was a cash only deal and they give you a sealed envelope with your results. We had to drive 2.5 hours to see this elderly doc who had a fairly skanky office in the sticks. Or wait for 2 months to see someone close by.

My husband did provide a translation of his Dutch birth certificate. But he had a Dutch friend, also a professor do the translation, and that was fine. We might have had it notarized... But this was 10 years ago. When we married (in the Netherlands), we asked for the international marriage certificate. It is a standard form and I'm sure you can get one from wherever you were married.

Good luck! Hope it all goes smoothly. If you decide to become a US citizen it's an easier and friendlier process.
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Old 26.05.2011, 00:55
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Re: Help----Apply US Green card in Switzerland

Thank you so much for the information,
when I make the appointment and go to submit the document, does my husband have to come together to the embassy? I appreciate for further reply
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Old 26.05.2011, 01:05
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Re: Help----Apply US Green card in Switzerland

Quote:
Going through the green card process in the US, and the C permit process here, I can tell you that 2 years, numerous requests for info they already had and nearly $1000 dollars vs 4 weeks and scanned in originals of documents emailed to my husband's secretary at the uni plus $44 for the Swiss entry visa, it was a lot easier to come here. I forget what I paid for the actual c permit itself.

Having said that, there are advantages to applying for permanent residency while you are here, it is supposed to be easier and take less time than if you adjust status In the US. My experiences in Bern were a lot nicer than the USCIS in Charlotte, NC.

Do you have to have the bizzare medical exam? In the US, you had to go to certain docs only, it was a cash only deal and they give you a sealed envelope with your results. We had to drive 2.5 hours to see this elderly doc who had a fairly skanky office in the sticks. Or wait for 2 months to see someone close by.

My husband did provide a translation of his Dutch birth certificate. But he had a Dutch friend, also a professor do the translation, and that was fine. We might have had it notarized... But this was 10 years ago. When we married (in the Netherlands), we asked for the international marriage certificate. It is a standard form and I'm sure you can get one from wherever you were married.

Good luck! Hope it all goes smoothly. If you decide to become a US citizen it's an easier and friendlier process.
This was pretty much along the line of my experience with my husband trying to get him to US before I came here. We had neglected (forgotten it was necessary) to have the medical done and when they changed immigration laws in the US in 2007, we wound up facing the requirement of pretty much starting back with square one.

In the end, it was much easier (and less expensive, if no less time consuming) for me to come here.

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Thank you so much for the information,
when I make the appointment and go to submit the document, does my husband have to come together to the embassy? I appreciate for further reply
Whether he "has to" or not, it is always the best thing to do for him to be with you in every case regarding visa / immigration papers where the opportunity is there for him to be with you. So, unless you are told by them he can't be there for some reason, best thing for him to go.
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Old 29.05.2011, 12:50
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I went with my wife the first time and I would recommend your spouse go if possible. There were other visits necessary but my wife was able to go alone.

After the first visit they said they were "done with me" yet at the very end they wanted me to sign my tax returns. I didn't give them signed copies as I had always electronically filed. Also when they say something like that there is an X month processing time, it means your application goes into a file for X months with no one ever looking at it (from my experience). Then they suddenly look at it and will tell you if there are problems. So if you don't hear anything that doesn't necessarily mean all is well.

Regards,
Dan
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