Being from Canada and married to a wonderful American girl, I am in the process of obtaining my green card. The whole process was started over one year ago and now everything has gone to hell.
Initially, I was told that the whole process for a marriage based green card generally took around 6-8 months. But knowing the INS (or i guess i should say CIS now), it always takes longer. The problems started a few months ago when I realized there was only a few months left to my employment authorization (EAD) and that unless the green card would happen soon, i would need a renewal to keep working.
The response from my immigration attorney was that they would need to file a new EAD application but that because i had moved from San Francisco to Seattle (because of my new job with Microsoft), they needed to file with the office that was processing my case but they had no clue where my file was at.
Six weeks later, I still had no response from my attorney and the clock was still ticking. So last week i had to begin pressuring my attorneys, making them realize that if they did not get the ball rolling i would have to hold them responsible if i had to be pulled off payroll and not make any income until the situation is resolved.
Well, turns out that they finally figured out what happened to my file yesterday and i have to say that this is messed up! When I moved from San Francisco, my attorneys filed an address change with that office to let them know I was moving to Washington state. Although there isn’t a set procedure for this, the office has the right to forward my file to the new local office where I moved. Turns out some idiot at the CIS decided that Washington state = Washington DC so they sent out the file to the wrong office!!!
This at least explains why I had received a letter from the Norfolk, VA office requesting a verification of my mailing address a few months ago. But my lawyer has verified that my file is not any longer with the DC office. So in theory my file should be in Seattle (or at least in transit to) but they have not confirmed this yet.
Now, i have to make an emergency appointment with the Seattle office, hope they have my file and that they will renew my EAD. But i am sure they will make me wait in line, and use the “It’s not procedure” line on me. But I hope they realize the mistake and will be willing to work with me.