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  1. #151
    Philippine Expat Davis Knowlton's Avatar
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    Absolutely right on doing it yourself. And, she sounds like a great gal.

  2. #152
    CCBW JPPR2's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Davis Knowlton View Post
    Absolutely right on doing it yourself. And, she sounds like a great gal.
    Cheers DK. We are a good match and both quite happy.

  3. #153
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    Well done JP and congrats are in order .

    I know its not quite the same but I can relate to the similar feeling of relief when I completed the final hurdle and got my missus her UK passport

  4. #154
    CCBW JPPR2's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nigelandjan View Post
    Well done JP and congrats are in order .

    I know its not quite the same but I can relate to the similar feeling of relief when I completed the final hurdle and got my missus her UK passport
    Thanks Nige, Its probably close enough for us to compare the process and know the effort it takes. We have one last hoop and that's the US citizenship test and we already have a big jump on that. Nice thing is with the contingencies released there is nothing to worry about, choice is really ours whether or not to pursue the citizenship. We are just going with the flow at this point. We tried to plan the house build in Thailand around the US citizenship date. House is ahead of schedule at this juncture.

  5. #155
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    I think most people who use lawyers for their immigration documentation are either of two categories, immigrants who have little or no English skills or those who believe misguidedly that a lawyer is necessary.

    Few native Americans would have approached this task as you have JPPR. Dealings with Federal government agencies are not something noted for logic and reason. It appears that your hard work paid off and that perhaps you should write a handbook for those wishing to do this work without any lawyers. I think it would sell by the bucket load in the USA.

    I did my own divorce using a handbook of this type. $85 was the final court costs. Mostly for processing paperwork.

  6. #156
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    Quote Originally Posted by RamboII View Post
    She would need to pay in to social security for 40 quarters (of a year; the equivalent of working 10 years) to collect at some future date. At that point, she would be entitled to collect your SS monthly payment, if you should die.
    I am not sure that is correct, I have talked to social security twice about my collecting off my account both times I was told good to go. She can begin collecting at 62 , at a reduced amount , while I am alive when I die the amount goes up to what I am collecting. She has no where near 10 years of paying in, bit I think she has to be married to me 10 years.

  7. #157
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    Quote Originally Posted by JPPR2 View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by RamboII
    She would need to pay in to social security for 40 quarters (of a year; the equivalent of working 10 years) to collect at some future date. At that point, she would be entitled to collect your SS monthly payment, if you should die.
    Those numbers are correct. We will stick with the green card status and keep it simple.

    Quote Originally Posted by toddaniels
    I know quite a few Thai women married to foreigners who have both their husbands surname and hold a passport for another country too, yet hold a fist full of chanotes in their now foreign sounding surname.
    Good information above ^^^. We have been reading info that nowadays it is now becoming more complicated and can create issues in buying land. While I am not married to her, I said if it ever happens for her to keep her Thai Passport and maiden name as you do not need a US Passport. Originally I wanted her to have it to travel back and forth but now have found the green card works as the same. She can travel back and forth with no issues, stay as long as she likes, work where she wants so there is no big benefit becoming a US citizen. Now if you plan on working here for years and want to be part of the system them it might be a good thing.

    Be very nice if they had something like this to stay in TL instead of that idiotic 90 day check in.

    My Thai wife and I have been living in the US and Thailand for 8 years, you a Thai citizen with a green card can only stay outside the US for six months without the possibility of loosing there green card status she can buy a permit to stay longer for about $500. Staying longer than six months the immigration dept. considers they have given up the intent to stay in the US. If they are owners or co owners of property they can get around this. We were at the airport leaving for the US, a Thai women checking before us had stayed in Thailand to long she was not allowed to check in told to go to the US embassy.

  8. #158
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    Quote Originally Posted by JPPR2 View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Davis Knowlton View Post
    You really need to take "plight" out of your subject line - it's been about as letter perfect as could be. And congrats on the nuptials - I knew they were coming!
    DK,
    You know you are right. But when I embarked on this I had no idea what was in front of me(us). It has been a seamless easy process. Its all in the details. If you do your paperwork correctly by yourself it goes a lonnnnnnng way with INS. Again I personally think if you hire an attorney it raises a flag and complicates the process. Of course the attorney wants it to draw out, they make more money..

    Thanks on Marriage. I surrendered....
    I met my Thai wife in the US, she had over stayed her visa by 2years, with the help of a lawyer we were able to get the over stay negated and they accepted her application,it is sometimes a help to have a lawyer.

  9. #159
    CCBW JPPR2's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RPETER65 View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by JPPR2 View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Davis Knowlton View Post
    You really need to take "plight" out of your subject line - it's been about as letter perfect as could be. And congrats on the nuptials - I knew they were coming!
    DK,
    You know you are right. But when I embarked on this I had no idea what was in front of me(us). It has been a seamless easy process. Its all in the details. If you do your paperwork correctly by yourself it goes a lonnnnnnng way with INS. Again I personally think if you hire an attorney it raises a flag and complicates the process. Of course the attorney wants it to draw out, they make more money..

    Thanks on Marriage. I surrendered....
    I met my Thai wife in the US, she had over stayed her visa by 2years, with the help of a lawyer we were able to get the over stay negated and they accepted her application,it is sometimes a help to have a lawyer.
    RPeter,
    I agree a consultation with a lawyer in extreme cases such as yours where your wife had basically become an "illegal" can be beneficial. However I would never put them on a retainer. There are many immigration attorney's that offer a 1 hour $150 sit down. Its a steal. Go in with your list of specific questions and be on your way. All the answers are out there with a little research effort.


    Glad it worked out for you...

  10. #160
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    Quote Originally Posted by JPPR2 View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by RPETER65 View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by JPPR2 View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Davis Knowlton View Post
    You really need to take "plight" out of your subject line - it's been about as letter perfect as could be. And congrats on the nuptials - I knew they were coming!
    DK,
    You know you are right. But when I embarked on this I had no idea what was in front of me(us). It has been a seamless easy process. Its all in the details. If you do your paperwork correctly by yourself it goes a lonnnnnnng way with INS. Again I personally think if you hire an attorney it raises a flag and complicates the process. Of course the attorney wants it to draw out, they make more money..

    Thanks on Marriage. I surrendered....
    I met my Thai wife in the US, she had over stayed her visa by 2years, with the help of a lawyer we were able to get the over stay negated and they accepted her application,it is sometimes a help to have a lawyer.
    RPeter,
    I agree a consultation with a lawyer in extreme cases such as yours where your wife had basically become an "illegal" can be beneficial. However I would never put them on a retainer. There are many immigration attorney's that offer a 1 hour $150 sit down. Its a steal. Go in with your list of specific questions and be on your way. All the answers are out there with a little research effort.


    Glad it worked out for you...

    Our immigration lawyer was not on a retainer he charged a one time fee of $500' as he was very involved in the Thai community, and good friend of my wife's. Had it not been for the over stay problem, which could have resulted in my wife's expulsion and not being admitted back into the states, we would have gone through the process ourselves.

  11. #161
    CCBW JPPR2's Avatar
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    Last Leg of the journey

    We are at the 2 year 9 month mark now and we can start the last segment.

    This includes the following;

    • File form N-400 (Application for Naturalization)

    • File form G-1145 (Notification of Application/Petition of acceptance)

    • Fees $680


    Once mailed It is HIGHLY advisable not to plan any traveling outside the US. The main reason is they tend to mail you various appointments and they are really not negotiable meaning trying to change them is a real nightmare and could put the entire process in slow down mode. Coupled with that they are likely to check how many times you have left the US and for how many aggregate total days.


    • First appointment is a biometric scan.



    • The interview. This is basically a recap of the initial interview for the greencard and the intent is to make sure you are still really married, that you have joint activities together etc etc. The critical thing is you must show viable financial means to support the both of you and have medical insurance. I was going exit my job a few months early to work with her on the test and coordinate our cargo container and its not a good idea. Remain employed and have benefits in place. Of course if you are not leaving the US nothing will change and you will need to be gainfully employed or over 62.5 and already receiving SS and Medicare in some fashion. I am a long way off from official retirement age so I have to show viable means to cover all of it. Also make sure you have both greencards (The initial one and the 10 year one) You must relinquish both. If not its a problem as they worry it got sold off and is being used by someone else fraudulently.



    • The test. You get 100 questions to review and they will ask you randomly a number of them. These question are all over the internet and my wife has made flash cards and we just started going over them.


    • The swear in. This is when you take the oath to be a US citizen. This Oath cannot happen until you have hit the 3 year mark no matter what (5 year if you are doing this single). You can start the naturalization process at the 2 year 9 month mark but cannot be sworn in until the 3 year mark is achieved.


    I will update as we move on through the next 3 month process.

  12. #162
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    JP, I agree with Itnt about writing a book showing the detailed process. Once you get it published, it is just a matter of watching the royalties come flowing in. Well done and I admire your patience and determination. See you in Thailand.

  13. #163
    CCBW JPPR2's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rickschoppers View Post
    JP, I agree with Itnt about writing a book showing the detailed process. Once you get it published, it is just a matter of watching the royalties come flowing in. Well done and I admire your patience and determination. See you in Thailand.
    RC,
    Thanks. Maybe I will. I am glad to help others that go down this route.

    And yeah buddy, see you in Thailand very soon. Its almost feet up, Tequila time.

  14. #164
    CCBW JPPR2's Avatar
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    Its all done

    Thought I would close this thread out and say my wife has completed her oathe pledge and is now a US citizen.

    We have been living in our house in Thailand now since Feb. Lots going on.

  15. #165
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    Congratulations on your success after a long journey.

  16. #166
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    Congratulations on your Herculean feat. Will talk soon.

  17. #167
    Philippine Expat Davis Knowlton's Avatar
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    Well done, JP. Perfect execution and result. Enjoy retirement!

  18. #168
    CCBW JPPR2's Avatar
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    Thanks guys. It was fun and when she raised her hand and did the oath it was really rewarding.

    I wanted to close out the thread as I always used to get frustrated when someone would start a detailed thread and never finish it. I found the same with car and moto threads.

  19. #169
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    Hi JPPR2, My wife also just finished this long process and has her passport on the way.

    I had a question about when you travel to between Thailand and the U.S. does she show both passports? or does she just use the Thai passport on arrival in Thailand?

    Thanks in advance for any guidance.

  20. #170
    Head Skivvie Stacker Storekeeper's Avatar
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    My wife and step-daughter are in the “waiting for the interview” phase. An online account can be created to track progress in addition to waiting for the snail mail letter. Right now it shows the interview isn’t going to be before September 2020.

    An interesting side not is my step-daughter is a senior now at WSU and is 22 so technically I don’t think her application is piggybacking my wife’s.

    May have a complication here in the next few weeks if I get offered another job in Japan.

  21. #171
    CCBW JPPR2's Avatar
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    Glad to help Naptownmike. She brings both. She leaves Thailand with Thai Passport and arrives and uses US Passport. When we leave she departs using US Passport and when we arrive in Thailand she uses her Thai Passport.

    Btw. Congrats to both of you. It sure makes life easy.

  22. #172
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    Thanks, I probably waited to long to do the final step of citizenship but it's all done now.

    My wife has been living and working and paying tax in America for 12 years.

    It should definitely make travel easier and she will get SS benefits for all the years she worked here. Not that we are relying on it might be a bit of extra money.

  23. #173
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    Shorekeeper Congrats, It's a lot of paperwork and stuff to get together but definitely worth it.

    It took about 6 months from the time I first sent in her application. I think we sent it in around April and Just finished Two weeks ago.

    Got it all done just in time for our trip next month I was starting to get nervous.




    Quote Originally Posted by Storekeeper View Post
    My wife and step-daughter are in the “waiting for the interview” phase. An online account can be created to track progress in addition to waiting for the snail mail letter. Right now it shows the interview isn’t going to be before September 2020.

    An interesting side not is my step-daughter is a senior now at WSU and is 22 so technically I don’t think her application is piggybacking my wife’s.

    May have a complication here in the next few weeks if I get offered another job in Japan.

  24. #174
    CCBW JPPR2's Avatar
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    Hey. Good thing is it's done. I wanted my wife to have it so if Thailand went sideways she had an option as well as being able to move to the states in the event I croak and she wants to move. My wife was only in the states working for 4 years so not gonna get much or anything from SS. But she will have access to some % of my SS bennies.

    In the end it's just a good thing for both.

    Congrats again

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