Friday, November 14, 2008

More about Filing with the CIS

I just got a courtesy phone call from FedEx letting me know that my package arrived at the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services! So, we have officially submitted our I-800A today!

Since the end of September, all I-800A applications need to be mailed to the attention of the USCIS Hague Unit at an address in Chicago. The full name of the application we are filing is "Application for Determination of Suitability to Adopt a Child From a Convention Country." Mexico and the United States are both Hague Convention Countries, so we need to follow all of the Hague laws and procedures. The I-800A is the first step in our children's immigration process, so that they will be able to enter the United States legally once they are adopted. With our application, we are seeking permission from the United States Government to adopt 2 siblings from Mexico. This would also allow us to adopt a single child.

The target processing time frame for this application is around 90 days. The applications are checked for completeness initially in Chicago, and then they are forwarded to the National Benefits Center that specializes in Hague cases. I believe it is in Missouri. Before a decision is made on our application, we will get a notice with an appointment to appear at our local USCIS office to get our fingerprints scanned for FBI background checks. After our background checks clear, then our application will be reviewed and a decision will be mailed to us.

We cannot be referred (matched) with children until we receive this permission from the USCIS.

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