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US Visa - SUCCESS


US Visa - SUCCESS

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Christopher Stacey
Christopher Stacey
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That's fantastic news! Well done! And thanks for sharing the story - it's certainly one to build into our Information Hub for others to learn from.

Need Unlocks advice? Visit our self-help information site or contact our helpline
d211q2
d211q2
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tedthebear said...
Thanks for sharing.

Do you think it could actually work in your favour to apply from Paris? I imagine London to be far busier and therefore less chance of getting accepted.

What do you think?
If the process worked properly, there shouldn't be any difference in where to apply. The embassy was also busy! The only differences I think, and this is an entire subjective opinion that may not be accurate at all, are:

 

1) There's no tie-up between the embassy and the French authorities - therefore an ACPO certificate doesn't exist and is not mandatory. However, the staff will want some evidence of your record (so I gave them the ACPO in the first place)

 

2) The staff who end up in Paris I speculate might be amongst the more liberal of American consular officials, and may give you an easier ride!

 

It will certainly end up costing more - as you need to get to Paris, fork out for an appointment, a very expensive postal deliver, and a hotel room for a few days whilst you wait for your passport. You'll also need to give a good reason as to why you are applying in France - for me it was because I live there as a student.
d211q2
d211q2
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Just to add that I have come back from a very pleasant weekend in New York with the wife (who went on an ESTA).

Conversation went as such:

US "Why do you want to come to America"
Me "To sightsee in New York"
US "Why do you need a visa to enter the US?"
Me "Erm…"
US "Past indiscretions?"
Me "Yes"
US "Thank you sir, please put your hand on the reader for fingerprints and Welcome to America"
d211q2
d211q2
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Had visa interview this morning (Paris Embassy) and was granted. Passport coming back end of week.

Recap: 2 arrests - 1 caution for D&D in 2005, 1 for ABH in 2010 which resulted in 10-week tag, 260 hours community service, £400 fine from Magistrates.

I applied for B1/B2 visa from US Embassy in Paris, as currently at university in France. Filled in standard visa application, whereby I declared both caution and conviction. I also got ACPO certificate but this is not mandatory for visas from France. Booked appointment online, and turned up with confirmation of payment, Stamped Addressed Envelope, photos, etc.

Arrived at 0730 (smartly dressed in suit and tie!), given a number, and gave all docs for registration. about 20 mins later, was called to a screen with US immigration officer. There was no private room, just a rank of booths not unlike a bank branch. She asked me what I was doing in France, what I wanted to go to the US for, and how was I going to finance it. I gave her a copy of my uni course confirmation, and my bank statements.

She then asked me to give more detail about the 2 arrests / convictions which I did, and also handed over the ACPO certificate. After she tapped away on a computer for a bit, she then said "I just have to go and check something", and 5 minutes later she came back and said, "Everything is fine, and you'll get your passport back with the visa in 2-3 days".

Total time at Embassy - 1 hour. Obviously there will be some minor procedural differences between Paris and London, but the key takeaway is that the system can work, and the bureaucracy not be so bad. Clearly it's not all quite there, as I won't believe the final hurdle is overcome until I set foot on American soil. It's a major weight off my mind, however.

As for a "thinking outside the box" option, I can't see any reason per se why Paris might not be just as good a place to apply for a visa as London.

Post Edited (d211q2) : 28/10/2013 12:50:07 GMT


caterpillar
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I will be embarking on a new application for a US Visa this summer that would be considered to involve moral turpitude (if the Yanks consider a bottle to be a deadly weapon) - unlawful wounding. I'll keep everyone posted.

The way I see it, people are getting way to pent up over the America thing. You are either going to get a Visa or not. Consider the odds out of favour and you have a good starting point.
Mirrorman
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Were your crimes those involving moral turpitude?!

Were you just given a visa straight away? You did not have to recieve a waiver of ineligibility?!
tedthebear
tedthebear
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Thanks for sharing.

Do you think it could actually work in your favour to apply from Paris? I imagine London to be far busier and therefore less chance of getting accepted.

What do you think?
GO


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