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Leigh & Tony
11-13-2006, 09:15 PM
Hi all,
I am writing this after looking for help and feel only despair. Myself and my husband bought a business while out here on a B2 last year. We filed for E2 in London and via Texas (To enable to purchase to go ahead and for us to stay). That was August/Sept last year. We got the change of status via Texas, but London asked for more information. Our lawyer was a little vague about what they wanted, but we resubmitted around Christmas time and in April of this year we were denied. No real reason was given, we were told we could go for an interview, but our lawyer said that was a kamikaze approach as we would then be out of the country.
This weekend, my dad died. We have no way of getting back to the UK without losing our E2 status, our business and our home.
We paid $98,500 for a business, in cash, employ 5 people full time, pay them a good wage and provide health insurance that we can't afford for ourselves.
We work almost every day of the week, pay taxes, will never get a Green card and ask ourselves, why? This dream has sharp turned into a nightmare and we don't know what to do next. Any suggestions? :confused: :(

haytonmac
11-13-2006, 09:33 PM
hi
leigh and Tony i'm so sorry to hear of your Dad's passing,I wpuld suggest you send Susie a pm .She is very up on these things,Again sorry to about your Dad ,best wishes

chris
11-13-2006, 09:39 PM
I'm sorry to hear of your dilemma, but I have to say that you are probably not alone in how you did it. Because of the farce at the London Embassy, there must be a good number who have come over on a B Visa, changed status and are waiting for their E2 Visa to be processed. Your VA is right that because your status was granted by the USCIS, you only keep that status whilst you are in the US. Leave and you leave behind that status. There is no such thing as a denial, because you can still push ahead with your E2 if you can prove that it meets the E2 FAM criteria (or londons criteria which seems to differ from everyone elses). Maybe you should speak to another VA/VC and get a 2nd opinion.
We came over on E2, got screwed by a VA and we never renewed our Visa. We are still here and maintain status with USCIS only. As a result, like you we are 'landlocked' and 2 of my wifes relations (grandma and uncle) died last year and she couldn't leave to say her farewells. There is no 'compassionate leave' arrangements as a non-immigrant I'm afraid if you haven't got that visa in your passport.
Your scenario sums up totally all that is wrong with the present immigration rules regarding E2 Visas. You are invetsing in the countyr, you are creating jobs for Americans and what do you get in return - diddly squat! The way things are on E2 you will never ever get a GC and your kids will age out at 21.
As to what you should do? I personally would sit down and have a good heart to heart as a family and decide what is good for your futures and take it from there.

Ron
11-13-2006, 10:41 PM
Hi Tony and Leigh

First of all welcome, we know exactly what your going through and here to offer at least good moral support.

You are not alone, so much is screwed up with this immigration it makes me so angry that decent folkes lives are on hold and in the lap of the Gods! well thats what the immigraiton officers think they are.

All I can think of is book and appointment to see your senator or congressman. Tell him like it is and see if he can help. You may wish to share your story with Florida Peter on this forum. I know he writes a lot of articles for a magazine in the uk and even sent an e-mail to a guy call Calfied who is head of the american embassy

Susie
11-13-2006, 11:04 PM
Hello Tony and Leigh and :welcome:

I truely feel for you and your situation needs to be reviewed

Can I ask, When you got denied in April, was this a 221g? has your attorney replied to the denial asking what further evidence they need ? What does attorney suggest, anything?

I also feel that you should book appointment with Senator, this can do no harm and possibley some good.

I am not sure but you might be able to obtain an emergency travel permit at Tradeport Drive, not sure though if this applies you though. Are you saying your E visa was approved by Texas and denied by London?

Tomorrow at 5 to 6pm EST my attorney James LaVigne and I will be holding an online chat on expatsvoice forum

Please feel free to post some questions and see if he has any ideas. I will mention your posting when I see him

Once a month we have a committee meeting and the next is on 15th Nov at 7.30pm in the Davenport area. If you would like to come please pm your contact details and I will call you

Leigh & Tony
11-14-2006, 12:10 AM
Hello everyone who has replied and thanks for your sympathy and offers of support. It is the first time we have used something like this. I think it would be useful to attend the meeting Susie mentioned, so I will contact her to arrange this. Once again thanks and I will keep you updated.

lorraine
11-14-2006, 12:26 AM
Hi Leigh and Tony I truly am sorry to hear of your loss. This summer due to visa I was unable to go home to my grandfathers funeral. 3 weeks ago my sister passed away and thanks to alot of help from Susie and others I managed to get home and spend a week before she died. I truly hope and prey that you can get home and that things change for the better for you. Kindest regards Lorraine

reecey
11-14-2006, 12:40 AM
Hi leigh and Tony
so sorry for you, what an awful situation, you should get some good advice from this forum

regards

Susie
11-14-2006, 03:14 AM
Hi Chris

I feel I must answer your comments as follows

Your scenario sums up totally all that is wrong with the present immigration rules regarding E2 Visas. You are invetsing in the countyr, you are creating jobs for Americans and what do you get in return - diddly squat! The way things are on E2 you will never ever get a GC and your kids will age out at 21.
As to what you should do? I personally would sit down and have a good heart to heart as a family and decide what is good for your futures and take it from there.

Hi Chris

I totally agree with your comments and we as a committee and group are trying to address exactly the problems you state

We have been talking to various groups in the background. It appears that it would be easier to petition to amend an existing law rather than petiton for a new law

That being said, one of the first agenda's we have will be to amend the dream act . This act has been passed but not yet imlpemented. We hope amend this act to include protection of E visa holder's children from becoming out of status at 21years of age and allow them to adjust status to LPR. This should be subject to good moral character and not limited to children who have studied five years in the USA.

This must not be limited to children who have studied five years, as there will be cases that one sibling would be protected and the other not, which is not acceptable

If we can get this amendment passed, once the children have been a LPR for five years they could then become a USC and in turn petition for their parents to become a LPR

We could ask for the earth, moon and stars but we will not get it, so slowly and surely we will succeed.

Now the elections are over the discussions regarding illegals will increase, which is fantasic because this gives us the opportunity to respond with, OK now what about legal immigration issues

floridapete
11-14-2006, 09:30 AM
Hi all,
I am writing this after looking for help and feel only despair. Myself and my husband bought a business while out here on a B2 last year. We filed for E2 in London and via Texas (To enable to purchase to go ahead and for us to stay). That was August/Sept last year. We got the change of status via Texas, but London asked for more information. Our lawyer was a little vague about what they wanted, but we resubmitted around Christmas time and in April of this year we were denied. No real reason was given, we were told we could go for an interview, but our lawyer said that was a kamikaze approach as we would then be out of the country.
This weekend, my dad died. We have no way of getting back to the UK without losing our E2 status, our business and our home.
We paid $98,500 for a business, in cash, employ 5 people full time, pay them a good wage and provide health insurance that we can't afford for ourselves.
We work almost every day of the week, pay taxes, will never get a Green card and ask ourselves, why? This dream has sharp turned into a nightmare and we don't know what to do next. Any suggestions? :confused: :(

Hello Leigh & Tony, I am terribly sorry to hear of your predicament at this saddest of times and I only wish that I could offer some amazing solution - but I can't. Unfortunately, you are trapped in a 'catch 22' situation which is not of your making - but into which you have been lead by someone else - possibly the business broker who sold you the business or your visa consultant who said it was 'OK' to do it all this way.

I am VERY concerned about all of the people I am now hearing of who have 'moved over' to the USA on the basis of buying a business but who have no visa status (yet) to stay and work ! They have been lead into it by the possibility (in theory) to adjust status from B2 to E2 through the USCIS Texas Service Centre. These people are often told 'oh you can convert your visa and stay here' which is not strictly the truth since the Texas centre does NOT issue Visas - only a change of status. Only the US Embassy in London can issue visas to British nationals resident in the UK (though British residents of others countries, say France, can apply through the US Embassy in their country of residence).

So it is not entirely true (as Susie has expressed it elsewhere) that you applied for visas concurrently through Texas and London - one was approved and the other wasn't - as Texas cannot issue visas. But the lack of comparable standards between the two does give rise for some concern.

It is also a fact that the people who lead buyers down this path of half-truths never mention the fact that you could find yourself land-locked by virtue of your change of status NOT being a visa in your passport until you return to London. After all, that wouldn't sell businesses would it ? But they are pursuing this path of status adjustment simply because the waiting list of E2 applications done the right and proper way in London in the first place has become so long due to the number of applicants and the increased burden of renewals being placed on London by the changes of July 2004.

So enterprising business brokers and visa consultants are using the change of status route to get 'E2 status' (but NOT E2 visas) to close the deals - but they are placing people like you in future jeapardy. Particularly in the case of any compassionate crisis, such as your present circumstances, for which there is currently no provision in immigration law.

I send you my very deepest sympathy.

pegasus
11-14-2006, 02:22 PM
In defense of the vast majority (in Florida) of Honest Business Brokers, the "enterprising" ones as Peter calls them are in my opinion simply crooked. Unfortunately there exists a few (All Brits, I have yet to meet an American who cons Brits) who say and do anything to get that sale especially today (even as far as using a very similar company name to the honest one). Forums like this help with the overall education of the prospective immigrant, however sometimes the picture painted can be inaccurate, or painted with too broad a stroke, as Peter's statement.
We now, unfortunately, have our first client who wants to buy the businesses first and then apply for an E2 as they "read on a forum" that others did that and it worked. We now have another form that states "We acknowledge that this is against the professional business advise of xxxxxxxxxx inc".
Lets hear good news as well as bad, as that [I]is how we all learn more, but both have to be as accurate as possible, general sweeping statements could lead others down a wrong path.

B rgds

Neil

DebbieM
11-14-2006, 02:47 PM
I too was speaking to someone only last week who had beed 'advised' that he could cut out the wait times and take the B2 / E2 route. As much as I tried to tell him the pitfalls he was adament that he was right and I ended up sounding like the party pooper.

This is sometimes where the heart rules the head and the desire to be here will overtake all sensible ruling and advice by others. For those who have been ill advised they are paying a very heavy price now and for those that see it as a way to a quick fix ignoring all good advice - it will come back and bite them.

Debs

Emmalee25
11-14-2006, 11:08 PM
HIya,
Im so sorry about the mess up that you are in, and look forward to meeting you at the meeting. We are too in an E2 c*ck up, think many many people are to be honest, hopefully you can take some solice in not being alone, and maybe we can all club together and sort some of this mess they call the 'E2 Process' out!!!

Em x

Susie
11-14-2006, 11:31 PM
Hi

Just so you know it is possible to Change from E visa to Green card, This can and has been achieved. There is also nothing in law to say you cannot

You should get a good immigration lawyer who knows his stuff to assist

anniefromessex
11-15-2006, 04:02 AM
Hi Leigh & Tony,

So sorry to hear of your loss, my Mum was dying whilst I was over here on an L Visa, I put myself out of status and went back to England to be with her and ended up having to revert to the Visa Waiver Programme for the next year or more, obviously costing thousands in flights etc; I even went to the Embassy in London to apply for a B Visa (which I had held for 10 years previously) and they turned me down saying I had no ties to the UK; I still owned property there, still had family there but they would not be swayed. They live by the rule book that is in their head on the day.

If you go to the meeting tomorrow night it will be great to meet you. Once again I am so sorry for what is happening to you, it's a nightmare for all of us.

Kriz1
11-15-2006, 12:52 PM
I too was speaking to someone only last week who had beed 'advised' that he could cut out the wait times and take the B2 / E2 route. As much as I tried to tell him the pitfalls he was adament that he was right and I ended up sounding like the party pooper.

This is sometimes where the heart rules the head and the desire to be here will overtake all sensible ruling and advice by others. For those who have been ill advised they are paying a very heavy price now and for those that see it as a way to a quick fix ignoring all good advice - it will come back and bite them.

Debs

It is a shock when you read peoples posts saying they are emigrating to the USA on a B2 after buying a business and being told they can get their E2 visa in TX...some are happy to be landlocked...and know they can't leave the country...but a lot have no idea that they can't go back to the UK for any reason and then just walk back in here.....
I could not live here like that...its bad enough with all the problem you have if you have the right visa or even a greencard...no way could I for one live with all the extra worries...
If I think about it its taken us 12 years or more to get here with the right visa....moving to the USA is one long waiting game for so many people...

Leigh & Tony
11-16-2006, 01:14 PM
Hi,

We didn't come here on B2 with a view to changing our status as we knew we would be 'land locked'. We got the B2 so we could take our time finding a business then apply to London for the Official E2. As we found a business we liked pretty quickly, our immigration lawyer advised we could wait the application out here in Florida, as we owned a home here already. The wait time was expected to be around 3 months. It was only when it became apparent the wait time was far longer, it was suggested we change our status via Texas to secure the business and allow us to stay here.
We closed on the business in Oct 05 after paying for premium processing through Texas. We got the 221g on 8th November 05. The points raised had already been explained in the original application, however, we gathered more information and reapplied. As we had the change of status, our lawyer was sure we would have no further problems. April 2006 we were advised our enterprise is not eligible for treaty trader investment status. We were invited to London for an interview and were advised not to go, as once out of the country, we were unlikely to get back in. The letter stated it would be unlikely anything we could tell them/show them, would make a difference.
All along our lawyer thought the lady dealing with the applications was at fault and he said if we wait until she is replaced in the summer, things might improve. We waited. She was replaced, things didn't improve. Now we have been told to wait it out until a new Consulate is put in place, it must be him. Has anybody else been told Florida was on fraud alert? There seems to have been numerous fraudulent applications approved, where the escrow has returned the money to the applicant once the visa has been issued, thereby no actual business is purchased. That is another reason we have been given for this mess.
Anyway, we attended a meeting at Susies last night, where we were made very welcome. I'm not sure where we personally are going to go from here. The death of my dad has made us want to do something, rather than sitting waiting, but I think we need time to grieve, before we make any rash decisions.

Sharon
11-17-2006, 06:18 AM
Hi

You said

Now we have been told to wait it out until a new Consulate is put in place

Sorry I do not understand,

Can you explain who said this and where the new consulate was going to be

Kriz1
11-17-2006, 12:26 PM
I can see why all this is happening when you read on other sites about fraud ..it only takes a few to make it bad for everyone else....

chris
11-17-2006, 12:45 PM
Hmm? Immigration Lawyers and Consultants, don't you just love them!
If the average Brit learning about London knows the problems and delays, why is it suddenly news to these so called experts who supposedly do it for a living day in day out.
I will always contend that besides the Business Brokers/Realtors, the VA/VC's are as much a part of the problem as anyone. Like most things here, it's what can do I do for a quick buck!

Leigh & Tony
11-17-2006, 02:19 PM
The immigration lawyer told me that the Consulate Officials in London, Head Honchos, are only given a 4 year term of office. He thought the denial problems were down to one member of staff, who has since been replaced. Nothing improved, so he reckons it must be coming from the top. Apparently the Head guy issued a statement claiming his staff were doing a wonderful job, following the letter of the law and approving all E2 applications that met the criteria. It was printed in the Go Usa magazine, or whatever it is called now, as there had been lots of articles in there prior, slating the Embassy and it's staff.

chris
11-17-2006, 04:13 PM
I'm surprised that your VC?VA doesn't know about the london scenario over the past few months. You would have to live either under a stone or on the mooon not to know about it all. I'm sure others can add to it, but here's a quick 101:
The named problem at the Emabssy was Meg Olson who had been leading applicants a merry dance for a long while and much of the criticism was as result of her activities. She was replaced this year by a man whose name escapes me, but who said things would speed up and improve. Shortly after the London site moved the timelines from about 18 to 24 weeks (some improvement!). They have now got more staff and have streamlined some of their processing (emmalee will fill you in no doubt) and they have publicly said they aim to reduce the processing time to 8 weeks by this Christmas. As most adults stopped believing in Father Christmas a long while ago, the same 'I'll believe it, when I see it' prevails. There are also mutterings from peeps who've been fro interview recently that bigger changes are on the way. No-one seems to know whether this is in processing systems or policy.
The Head of the Consular Sectionm which handles Visas is a guy called John Caulfield, who is the guy who publishes questionable statistics, etc in the magazine you mentioned. I am led to understand by others that he arrived at the Embassy around the same time as Meg Olson and that's when all the problems started. I have always belived he was and still is part of the London problem. Anyone add to this.

Susie
11-18-2006, 05:02 AM
Hey Chris


ref your quote

The Head of the Consular Sectionm which handles Visas is a guy called John Caulfield, who is the guy who publishes questionable statistics, etc in the magazine you mentioned

IMHO,

The problem lies at the top, and then follows through. Mr Caulfied does not even recognise or admit his office or his staff have had any problems. He made a statement recently blaming everyone for the long processing times.

Unfortunately cannot remember where I read it otherwise I would post it. Seems to me there is a lot more going on at the embassy than meets the eye

Leigh & Tony
11-18-2006, 12:16 PM
Hi,
As far as I know, a lot of this info was printed in the Go USA magazine, but it may now be called Emigrate USA. It is available in the Embassy believe it or not. I was a subscriber for a year before we moved out here. I knew the ladies name who had started the problems, but being new to these forums, wasn't sure if naming names was allowed!
Does anyone have the issue of the magazine and can they post the letter John Caulfield had printed?

floridapete
11-18-2006, 12:53 PM
Hi,
As far as I know, a lot of this info was printed in the Go USA magazine, but it may now be called Emigrate USA. It is available in the Embassy believe it or not. I was a subscriber for a year before we moved out here. I knew the ladies name who had started the problems, but being new to these forums, wasn't sure if naming names was allowed!
Does anyone have the issue of the magazine and can they post the letter John Caulfield had printed?

I posted the letter on here some time ago - see:http://forum.expatsvoice.org/showthread.php?t=421

floridapete
11-25-2006, 02:41 PM
Here it is in black and white on the US Embassy website:

http://www.usembassy.org.uk/cons_new/visa/niv/enew2.html

"It is necessary to establish the company's entitlement to E visa status prior to the issuance of an E visa to an investor or employee, even if the USCIS has authorized a Change of Status to E-2 for a person in the United States.

That status is valid only as long as the person remains in the United States.

To obtain an E visa, a complete application, with all required doucmentation, must be submitted to the Embassy for adjudication before a visa can be issued."

That's why the US Embassy London get so p...d off with so many trying to do a....se first ! You can't cry 'unfair, unfair' if you intentionally do it this way - and then get trapped !

Leigh & Tony
11-26-2006, 07:59 PM
Thank you for the info Pete, I feel so much better now. We didn't 'intentionally' come on B2 to change to E2 AFTER purchase, we applied to London for E2 at the time applications had been taking around 13 weeks. We had been advised (maybe wrongly) that as we had B2 status, we could wait it out here. We decided to go along change of status route when it looked as though we would run out of time and seller was getting edgy about delays. We got further info letter one month after we had changed our status. Hindsight is a wonderful thing!

Picto
12-21-2006, 02:46 PM
April 2006 we were advised our enterprise is not eligible for treaty trader investment status. We were invited to London for an interview and were advised not to go, as once out of the country, we were unlikely to get back in.

First of all, I'm sorry to hear of your circumstances. I appear to be one of the lucky ones who has got E2 approval through London this year (I was approved in November). It took several months (about 14 end-to-end), many sleepless nights and incalcuable anxiety but it has worked out for me in the end. I have learnt a lot over the last year or so and if I can be of any help to anyone I will do my best to do so and to be as objective as I can.

This forum is a useful resource for anyone considering visas to the US or currently in the application process. I do, however, hold a belief that perspective is difficult to achieve on a forum such as this because rarely do I see posts from applicants who have gone through the process successfully - and we know that in spite of everything going on in London, E2 visas are getting approved (perhaps not as high a percentage as in previous years, but they are getting approved). Presumably for those who do get approved (or at least most) after what they've been through, they're off living on the crest of the wave until renewal time rather than posting about their experiences.

I too applied for B1/B2 and headed off across the Atlantic to find a business. Finding one sooner than anticipated, I took advantage of the opportunity to get started straight away and got an adjustment of status to E2 approved. I then filed the application through London and heard nothing for 6 and a half months. Then I heard (hearsay) that the Embassy had new staff and were trying to reduce the backlog by the end of December. I also heard (hearsay again) that they were being more reasonable in there adjudication and where additional information was required, rather than suspend on 221g, they were inviting applicants to bring the information with them to the interview in London. I subsequently heard (rumor only) that they were doing this to get E2 status holders out of the country and then denying the visa, thus preventing the applicant from extending E2 status in country.

I also got a letter (an email actually) like yours, stating that my business is not eligible for treaty status. Perhaps like you, I was disappointed as we had a very strong business case, CPA certified financial data, hired staff, client testimonies etc.

I was also advised not to go for the interview as it was unlikely that I would get approved in London and I would lose everything. I heard all sorts of hearsay and rumors that London wouldn't like the fact that I converted from B1 to E2, or that my spouse and children had spent nearly a year in the US on VWP - that the Embassy has had enough of UK investors and everything in between. In all truth, I decided to put my trust in God that good always prevails in the end. I left the US, very scared, and returned to the UK, giving up my E2 status. I left behind my business, my home and personal effects and my dogs.

I spent a very nerve racking 6 hours in Grosvenor Square. When my time came to be interviewed, I was greeted by a very reassuring officer who apologized for the long delay. I'm not sure if he meant the 6 hours that day or the months previous but I wasn't going to ask. He explained the process and told me what he would have to determine in order to assess treaty status for my business. I found him to be personable, courteous and fair in his questioning. He asked why I had converted status and I told him the truth - that I saw an opportunity to start the business and knew I needed legal status to run it. He said that was perfectly acceptable. He knew my business plan inside out but luckily for me so did I. He asked lots of questions about my business; questions that he knew only I would know the answer to. He assessed my business against the 9 FAM. Luckily again, so had I. I had prepared a document pasting each section of 9 FAM as it pertained to E2 and then a statement underneath outlining my compliance thereto.

After a nerve-racking 20 minutes, he approved my application. Suddenly, all the risk I had taken in leaving my E2 status behind disappeared and I felt the weight of the world lift from my shoulders.

Overall, although my application took what feels like forever with the ensuing impact on my sanity, the interview in London was very fair and the officer diligent and direct but also courteous.

I don't feel that I am qualified to provide any sort of advice. I just thought I'd share my story in the hope that it provides insight, perspective and hopefully some inspiration to others that it's not all doom and gloom in the E2 world.

I would respectfully request that you don't ask me to comment further in the open forum. However, I feel it is my duty and obligation as a Christian to help others and I am more than happy to take personal messages from anyone who feels that they can benefit from my experience.

In closing, I'll say that there have been times in the last few months where I have thought there is no hope left. I have been separated from my children and had to listen to them on the phone in tears asking me "why are they doing this to us?" But, God has rewarded our faith in Him with a successful outcome. I'm not going to preach, but it stands to reason that you're more likely to find hope in God than in the system. Thanks for listening and good luck to you all.

Craney
12-21-2006, 03:46 PM
Hi Picto,
Thanks for taking the time to post, especially being one of the successful ones! I'm sure it gives hope to those still waiting and it certainly makes a nice change to see a positive result.
May I ask what business field you set up in?

haytonmac
12-21-2006, 06:43 PM
Well done Pitco and wish you and your family well for your life here in the USA.

Emmalee25
12-21-2006, 07:05 PM
Congrats Picto,
It great when we here of success stories, lifs our spirits no end.

Em x

Leigh & Tony
12-22-2006, 01:27 AM
Wow Picto,

Thank you for that! That has uplifted me no end. I wish I had the guts to do what you did. My lawyer only yesterday got in touch, after I sent an email asking if I could resubmit my application. Apparently, because I didn't attend the interview offered in April, my case was withdrawn and I have to start again. He still advises no, not until things improve over there. He is still blaming John Caulfield for backing irrational decisions. You are right, it does get very doom and gloom here and we need info like this to keep us going.

mark
12-22-2006, 03:24 AM
Hello Picto and Welcome

Congratulations on your approval. I agree with your comment about not too many approvals on the forum but it has only been live for about 7 months and as the Consulate is taking up to a year or more expect to hear of loads more approvals in the coming 7 months

mark
12-22-2006, 03:25 AM
Hi Craney and welcome to expatsvoice

Hopefully your approval will not be too much longer so keep your chin up

Picto
12-22-2006, 06:30 PM
Wow Picto,

You are right, it does get very doom and gloom here and we need info like this to keep us going.

Thanks for all your kind wishes. I hope and pray that you all get a successful conclusion too.

Everyone has to determine based on their own circumstances as to whether or not the risk is worth the potential reward. For me, it was. If I've learnt anything from my experience it's 2 things; 1). If you get knocked down seven times you stand up eight; 2). Obstacles are the things you see when you take your mind off the goal.

It's hard to muster the strength and conviction to keep going sometimes, especially when the odds often seem stacked against you. I do strongly believe in keeping perspective though. John Caulfied stated in recent correspondence that 96% of all applications are getting approved. Even if you allow for some cynicism, if you take a purely objective view the statistics show that you stand a very high chance of approval. This doesn't mitigate the anxiety that comes with waiting around for what seems like forever while your whole life is on hold but you should take something from it when you're at a low ebb.

I just kept saying to myself everyday, "if 10 people went to Grosvenor Square today, 8 of them left with an E2." It kept me going.

Good luck.

reecey
12-22-2006, 07:50 PM
hi :welcome: to you both

great news and thanks for posting !!!!!!!!!!!!

hopefultreatyinvestor
01-03-2007, 04:29 PM
Hello - I am in the USA on a J1 Visa which expires Feb 7th 07 - I am in the process of setting up an LLC with two other investors - I will be a 51% owner in teh company. We will have the company paperwork, funds in a US bank acccount which is in the company name and a business plan set up before my visa expires on 7th Feb, when I intend to submit the application to USCIS. Does anyone have any experience in applying through USCIS to adjust to E2? I am interested in finding out success rates. I realise that by applying this way I will have to re-apply at the UK consulate at some point but at the moment with the company only just being set up in time before my visa expires I am mostly interested in securing my stay in the US for the immediate future! Any help and advise would be appreciated especially in completing form I-129 which seems to be geared up mostly for H visa's!

DEE F
01-03-2007, 06:04 PM
Hi hopetreatinvestor, carry on with what you are doing, if you go to uscis.gov, you can download the file with a complete list of instructions, if you get it in on time you should be ok. Good luck:)


Dee xxx

peter gold
01-03-2007, 06:09 PM
I don't think you can go from J1 to E visa as a change of status. You fall foul of the dual intent rule.
A J1 visa is an exchnage visitor temporary visa for a trainee etc covers au pairs etc Most of them have a condition you have to return home after two years, or completion of training
You have to go back to the UK and then start the E2 process
You really need to see an immigration attorney

Emmalee25
01-03-2007, 07:21 PM
Peter is correct,
I had a J1 visa in 1998 and HAD to leave after 14months! i couldnt stay on a sponsored visa (H1b) or apply for any other until i had returned to the UK.

Em x

peter gold
01-03-2007, 07:26 PM
Emma
Thanks for re inforcing my advice as sometimes unless people with previous experience say it from the horses mouth people who don't like the answer don't listen, and that is where the problems start.

hopefultreatyinvestor
01-03-2007, 08:18 PM
Thanks for your reply guys - I am not actually subject to the 2 year HRR - not all J1's are, I have seen nothing else stopping me from adjusting my status to E2, I have the USCIS form C2 which states that nonimmigrant categories which are not eligable to change status amongst other is "J1 - Exchange Visitor subject to the two year foreign residence requirement" Can anyone confirm that for me???

Susie
01-04-2007, 01:06 AM
Hi Hopeultreatyinvestor

One of the main cirtera for E visa is to have funds committed, were you aware of this?

I do know you can apply for an E visa with a start up business but still have to show committed funds.

I have not read up on J visa's but will do when I get some spare time to see if I can help you

v2002
01-04-2007, 01:17 AM
:) YOU will need a waiver evan if you are not subject to 2 years residency. Its MUST to have that form before you file for change of status.
Thanks for your reply guys - I am not actually subject to the 2 year HRR - not all J1's are, I have seen nothing else stopping me from adjusting my status to E2, I have the USCIS form C2 which states that nonimmigrant categories which are not eligable to change status amongst other is "J1 - Exchange Visitor subject to the two year foreign residence requirement" Can anyone confirm that for me???
:)Yes hopeful you can adjust your status from nonimigrant to an imigrant visa E2 or H1b too provided you get the waiver from USCIA , since you are not subject to two years residency requirements you will fill up a form with USCIA and they will send you a waiver on your J1 status, You will have to attach this form with your immigration change of status application. This waiver takes about 15 to 30 days time ,You can complete and print your J Visa Waiver Application (Form DS-3035) online too.
I would say its much better to get H1b than to go for E2 but than it does not matter its all upto you.While you are working on all other things start immidiately for waiver as thats the first step.
Also for those who fall under two years residency requirements the status can be changed a USCIS provision exist for those too . But since you dont need that information I will not put them up here.
Good luck.
:) By the way USCIA is a diff. agency than from USCIS. The waivers ARE ONLY GRANTED BY USCIA.

hopefultreatyinvestor
01-04-2007, 02:26 PM
Guys - thanks for replying:

Susie -thanks for the advise - we intend to have a US bank account set up in the company name with the funds in already.

V2002 - I am a bit confused - I am applying for non-immigrant E2 Treaty Investor not EB2 immigrant visa. I cannot change to H1B-the quota is taken for 2007. Also, on my Form DS2019 "Certificate of Eligibility for Exchaneg Visitor (J1) Status" There is a section entitled "Preliminary Endorsemetn of Consular or Immigration Officer Regarding Section 212 (e) of the Immigration and Nationality Act, there are boxes which are relevant to your being subject to the 2 year HRR or not - mine is definately marked 'NOT SUBJECT TO THE 2 YEAR RESIDENCY REQUIREMENT and signed and stamped by a Consular Officer. Please advise - I have never been told I needed further proof. Thanks again!!

hopefultreatyinvestor
01-04-2007, 04:51 PM
Hello - I haev been looking for the government agency that you referred to "USCIA" I cannot find them! I thought the Department of State dealt with J Visa Waivers? Please help!!

v2002
01-04-2007, 06:02 PM
Hello - I haev been looking for the government agency that you referred to "USCIA" I cannot find them! I thought the Department of State dealt with J Visa Waivers? Please help!!
You can file the waiver application On line if you are not sure about that You should mail legible copies of all your DSP/IAP-66 forms along with the written request for an advisory opinion. Do not send your request by fax because DSP/IAP-66 forms frequently become illegible during the fax process.

You should send your request to the following address: U.S. Department of State CA/VO/L/W, Visa Services 2401 E Street, NW, (SA-1) Washington, DC 20522-0106. The request for an advisory opinion should be made by letter and must provide legible copies of all of the exchange visitor's DSP/IAP-66 forms for the entire time he/she was in J status. You should provide a self-addressed, stamped envelope for where you would like the advisory opinion sent.
It takes approximately 6-8 weeks to process an Advisory Opinion.If they find that you fall under WAIVER they will explain you how to get that and if they see that you do not need a waiver they will send you a note? this is the note that you need to file along with your papers that will tell USCIS that you are not falling under two year residency requirements.
You can have this filed through your lawer too .
Hope it helps.

Susie
01-04-2007, 07:31 PM
Thanks vip for your help


and thanks for posting your replies in the above manor, I truely found some of your posts hard to read, the above is very clear

Susie
01-04-2007, 07:32 PM
Hello - I haev been looking for the government agency that you referred to "USCIA" I cannot find them! I thought the Department of State dealt with J Visa Waivers? Please help!!


www.uscis.gov think that is what your looking for

v2002
01-04-2007, 08:22 PM
Yes I checked they have changed the name now it is DOS who issues the certification that you fall in the exempt cat for 2 year residency and do not need a waiver, Once you get this certification you will attach that to your paperwork make sure to keep copies of everything you send.
I have given you the address where to mail your application. Feel free to reach if you need further help. ( if you give me more detail as to your country and who sponsored your J1 for what purpose in PM I can give you more precise information "please do not give me your personal information "I do not need that).
Good luck and regards
Hello - I haev been looking for the government agency that you referred to "USCIA" I cannot find them! I thought the Department of State dealt with J Visa Waivers? Please help!!

hopefultreatyinvestor
01-04-2007, 08:57 PM
Thanks again for your help!

I was sponsorsed for J1 by Helicopter Adventures in Florida, I financed the aviation eduation myself, I am from the UK.

I just wondered why I needed a waiver when I already have official paperwork showing I am not subject to the 2 year HRR? just wondered?

Thanks again.

v2002
01-04-2007, 10:00 PM
Thanks again for your help!
V2002 - I am a bit confused - I am applying for non-immigrant E2 Treaty Investor not EB2 immigrant visa. I cannot change to H1B-the quota is taken for 2007. Also, on my Form DS2019 "Certificate of Eligibility for Exchaneg Visitor (J1) Status" There is a section entitled "Preliminary Endorsemetn of Consular or Immigration Officer Regarding Section 212 (e) of the Immigration and Nationality Act, there are boxes which are relevant to your being subject to the 2 year HRR or not - mine is definately marked 'NOT SUBJECT TO THE 2 YEAR RESIDENCY REQUIREMENT and signed and stamped by a Consular Officer. Please advise - I have never been told I needed further proof. Thanks again!![

I was sponsorsed for J1 by Helicopter Adventures in Florida, I financed the aviation eduation myself, I am from the UK.

I just wondered why I needed a waiver when I already have official paperwork showing I am not subject to the 2 year HRR? just wondered?

Thanks again.
You are very WC.

Attestation for waiver on J1 is must If you are not subject to 2 years HRR.

I had missed your second post now I do know your situation you do not need a waiver But you will need to send your paperwork to USIA ( I am sorry I mispelled the agency as it was long time we approached them for J1 Attestation.I just looked up our old papers and found the correct name of agency who had issued certification for us as we were not subject to 2 year HRR like you ).
The J1 where one does not need a waiver will need to file a application to certify your claim( to prove that you are not needing a waiver) through Govt agency USIA (United states information agency) once they attest/ certify that you are free from two years requirement USCIS will proceed with your Change Of Status, If you do not have this you cannot change your status.
I am giving you the contact persons name and also please find the website for more details.

http://dosfan.lib.uic.edu/usia/GC/jexprg.html

Good luck .

Attestation

Sally Lawrence
Chief, Attestation Unit
Office of the General Counsel
US Information Agency
301 4th Street SW, Rm 734
Washington DC 20547

Phone: 202-401-9810
Fax: 202-619-9809

Tracey J
02-04-2007, 03:41 PM
Hi all,I"m new to this site and it"s made very interesting reading.At present myself and my family live in the UK and are hoping to move to Florida. We have been advised to go down the B2/E2 route. Well wasn"t told about anyother route!! We"ve just sold are house and was looking forward to the future, now we"re not so sure. Think we must be using what I think you call on here "one stop shop" but he was recommended. He has told us more or less what I"ve read on here apart from the the fact that we"ll never have a "proper" E2. From what I"ve read if we don"t own property in the UK we won"t get an E2 we"ll always just have" change of status ".Is this right? He told us we would have to come to London after 2 years but before that we wouldn"t be able to leave the USA. We already own property in Florida. The picture painted to us was much more rosie than anything I"ve read on here!!Can anybody offer any help or advice?? Thanks

peter gold
02-04-2007, 04:44 PM
Tracey
The E2 B2 route via a one stop shop shouts trouble
Please take legal advice from an immigration attorney.
If you plan to come here on a B visa with kids,and have sold our UK house you will show no ties to the UK and very doubtful wil get a B visa let alone an E2
You can get an E2 visa without owning property in UK... all you need show is somewhere you can return to at the end of the visa
I think you need to talk to someone independant and soon.!!

Tracey J
02-04-2007, 06:16 PM
Thanks Peter. We already have a B2 visa we went to Belfast for that. It expires December 07. How would we show somewhere to return to if we didn"t own property? Can you recommend an immigration attorney, I wouldn"t know where to start? Like you say we have to move fast, we"ve not signed anything on the sale of the house so we still have time to back out. Is it possible to change from a "change of status" visa to an E2 visa. We were told it was just a formality. Can hack not leaving USA for 2 years but for ever is a different matter. Is a "one stop shop" somebody that sells you the bussiness and gets you the visa? Think we may have just been saved from a big mistake!! By the way it"s a new bussiness not an existing one,we have to build up ourselves. If there"s anyone else out there that can offer help or advice it would be greatly received. Thanks

Tracey J
02-04-2007, 06:23 PM
Sorry to throw all these questions at you Peter but you seem to know what you are talking about!! We just feel like are whole world has fallen apart!!

floridapete
02-04-2007, 07:10 PM
Sorry to throw all these questions at you Peter but you seem to know what you are talking about!! We just feel like are whole world has fallen apart!!
Hello Tracey, glad that i was able to get you into EXcpats Voice forum following your recent e-mail to me.

I would be interested to know which 'one stop shop' you may be working with. That would give me a guide to the 'quality' of their advice to you.

Please e-mail me (or PM me using the private mail facility on the this forum) to tell me who they are. Maybe then I will be able to offer further advice for you.

For the moment, however, don't do anything rash ! Better be wiser now - than foolish later. :)

peter gold
02-04-2007, 09:50 PM
Florida Petes advise is sound
If its is a start up business you may be able to adjust B to E wguis here in the States but you need to be confident the start up businsess will evntually get the E2 visa
There are many attornies I coud recommend and many I woud not but as a rule of thumb see www.aila.org
You don't need to retain ownership of property in the UK just retaining ties e.g family home !!!

Jax
02-04-2007, 11:09 PM
Hi
This is a question re having an E2 visa as well as B2 visa at the same time,We are landlocked with our E2 visa but our B2 visa was never cancelled if we had an emergency could we re enter us on B2.

anniefromessex
02-05-2007, 01:44 AM
Hi,

I had L Visa, also B Visa in my passport - I think the L Visa superceded the B because when we were in the throes of appealing against a denial on the L, my B Visa did not take over when I had to put myself out of status because of my Mum being ill and eventually dying. I even went to the Embassy in London with paperwork from our IA (in the meantime the B had also run out) and they wouldn't entertain me applying for another B Visa saying that my ties were to America and not England!! We all know that you have to have ties to England whatever happens - in fact I did, own property there, have family there, substantial Bank accounts; they didn't want to know, there attitude sucked - the guy wouldn't even listen to what I had to say. Probably had a row with his wife that morning!

Another case of being damned either way!!!

Sorry to be negative but thats my experience, perhaps somebody else might have a different story and view.

Leigh & Tony
02-05-2007, 01:52 AM
In response to Jax, if you changed status to E2 from B2, the B2 is null and void. It's still there in your passport, as you didn't have to send your passport anywhere to change your status, but it has been superceded by the E2. If you had an E2 from London, then extended that over here, might be different?

ettena
02-05-2007, 02:10 AM
Hi All, I told you all a couple of weeks ago about the stupid mistake that had been made by our visa specialist whereby my partner did not get his e2 status filed for and as a result of this silly admin error became an overstayer. I felt terrible as I had told him that the status I had extended to him and truly believed this. The advice we given next was to leave as soon as possible and hope would be ok and either stay in the uk or come back on a waiver. Well we did as we were told we really never wanted to do anything illegal! He went home and tried to come back to see me yesterday and after a 10 hour plane journey he was pulled out of line before he even got the the port of entry officer and taken for an hours questioning. They knew he had overstayed and that he was visiting me. I was waiting in the airport for hours and they wouldn't let him talk to me or see me. He was put on the next flight home to the uk and didn't even get a drink or food on the plane! He really was treated inhumanely! They made him sign a statement and did an hours Q and A session with him and said he would go the jail if he lied about anything. He explained that he had never intentionally overstayed and that we were applying for our e2 and that he just wanted to see me. They said that he would never get back in on a waiver and should either sit in the uk until we get our E2 appointment or apply for a B2 and tell them the truth at the interview. We really don't know what to do! I am a complete emotional wreck and so is he. :(

anniefromessex
02-05-2007, 02:38 AM
Hi Ettena,

I am sooo sorry for what has happened; you are right, it is inhumane the way they treat you - an animal would get better treatment.

Obviously I don't know the in's and out's of your case but I am sure if you spoke to Susie if you feel that you have been misinformed she might be able to point you in the right direction with regard to seeking help - it might be an idea to get in touch with Senators/Congressmen to see if they could help you.

Once again, I am so sorry and I hope that things work out for you in the end.

Anniexxx

ettena
02-05-2007, 03:48 AM
Hi Annie, thanks for your reply.
What we need to find out now if 1. has he got a chance of getting another B visa by being open and honest and telling them that there has been a terrible mistake with his e2 status. 2. by overstaying will it in any way affect the decision to give us and E2! I know these are difficult questions but if he doesn't go for the b2 visa we are living worlds apart

floridapete
02-05-2007, 08:22 AM
Hi
This is a question re having an E2 visa as well as B2 visa at the same time,We are landlocked with our E2 visa but our B2 visa was never cancelled if we had an emergency could we re enter us on B2.

From what you say - you really don't have a E2 VISA at all ? I can't think of any way that you could be 'landlocked' with a Visa in your passport. What you probably have is one of those nasty B2>E2 'adjustment of status' (conversion) thingies which are NOT A VISA !

Therefore, if your B2 visa is still currently valid, it IS still a visa and would afford re-entry *. HOWEVER, the guy at POE will want to know 'what is the purpose of your visit' and 'how long do you intend to stay'. He will also look back at your previous entry/exit record on his computer.

So you better have some convincing answers if you know that your stay in AOS is longer than your stay on B2 would permit legally !

But what are you doing about getting that AOS validated into an E2 Visa in your passport in London ?

* Afterthought: I bow to Leigh and Tony's greater wisdom on whether the B2>E2 conversion would make your B2 visa null and void. It may do !

peter gold
02-05-2007, 02:54 PM
I have read so many posts of people who have been mis informed ill advised , or just wanting to hear part of the truth I thought I would post a simple explanation of 1-94s, B and E terminology.

In the years past all visitors to the US had to get a B visa from what was then called the US Embassy for multiple admissions to visit the US, and that was stamped in your passport, and usually lasted 10 years.That was abolished many years ago and the stamped visas timed out. In its place,for some not all countries they introduced the:

VISA WAIVER PROGRAM This allows you to enter the US WITHOUT A VISA for such period as the man on the border allows but generally 90 days
You are given an I-94 which is a record of admission and departure stamped with the port of entry and exit.IT IS IS NOT A VISA

If you have a B1/2 visitor for business or pleasure visa YOU ARE NOT ENTERING UNDER THE VISA WAIVER PROGRAM . You have a visa and you receve an I-94 to show your entry and exit.This can be obtained for up to a year as long as you can show at an inteview at the Consul in London
1. you have a residence (does not have to be owned, but an actual dwelling pace) in UK;
2. you have no intention of abondoning residence in UK;
3. you are visiting for pleasure or business. Business allows you engage in commercial transactions not involving gainful employment. You can negotiate contracts, consult with clients etc. You can make phone calls etc. You cannot be a full time manager of your business.
With this criteria you can readily see applicants with families, and/or not showing a residence are being refused B1/2 visas.

If you are lawfully in the US WITH A VISA you can adjust status. So you cannot go from visa waiver 1-94 to a visa whilst in the U.S. You leave and re apply for a visa.
If you enter on a B1/2 visa you have a visa,and yes you can file an adjustment of status (AOS), and file AOS at Texas but the E-2 visa can only be issued in the country of your residence, so YOU HAVE TO GO TO LONDON FOR INTERVIEW EVENTUALLY, and when you do will have to explain who was running the business whilst you were in the US, because you should not have been, and if they don't like what they hear, you are in the UK with a refused visa stamped in your passport and your business is in the US without a manager.
An observation ...anyone can own a business here but they need a visa to work it!!!
I know all you woud be E2 applicants don't like what is happening, but this is your lives and many of you are, or have been given bad advice.
The old trusted route of filing an E2 visa and waiting for interview in the UK is the safest way of doing things and flying over on the visa waiver from time to time to keep an eye on things whilst the visa is being processed.
I have always advised the use of an immigration attorney, and if asked they will provide a letter for you to carry whist travelling to explain your frequent entries under the visa waiver program.

peter gold
02-05-2007, 02:58 PM
I should add that the B2 visa is now null and void as Ettana has an extant AOS in the US

chris
02-05-2007, 04:34 PM
Peter,
I'm sorry mate, but I have to disagree with your spin on the E2 status as given by the USCIS. If you change status to E2 with USCIS whilst in the USA, you are entitled to do all the things that the E2 passport Visa allows you to do (except exit/entry). Your advice is incorrect.
Whilst on the change of status to E2 via USCIS you can work at running your business here and because the Immigration Act was changed to allow the spouse of an E2 Visa holder to work, this change in the law may even apply to the spouse of someone who has changed status to E2 whilst in the US.
My advice to Ettena is to seek professional advice (Visa Attorney), rather than rely wholy on advice given on this site, which whilst meant to be helpful, may or may not be accurate. Ettena may also benefit by calling the USCIS on their help line.
Her husband has burnt his bridges to an extent with his horrid experience yesterday and he can only get in, by the looks of things, by B or E Visa, assuming the London Embassy want to be helpful. But all that takes time.
FloridaPete has once again hit the nail on the head with the 'horrid' B2 to E2 conversion. People usually find themselves in this scenario because of pressures to buy a business and run it or simply a desire to circumvent the trial by ordeal that passes for Visa procesing in London.
Once again, innocent folk have been caught up in the nasty little business that passes for immigration advice here and I can only wish that Ettena has her husband by her side as soon as possible.

peter gold
02-05-2007, 04:55 PM
Chris
Maybe we are saying the same thing in a different way.
If you AOS to E2 whilst in the US it has not been adjudiacted upon its merits and when the eventual time comes for interview the would be E2 applicant is going to have to answer the questions of why they entered the US on a B status then changed to E2, as apposed to going straight to an E2
As many people on here are aware I have worked in and with immigration lawers for years and on Tuesday I will run this past the attorney.
Meanhwhile I still say inadvised to run a business you have bought whilst holding a B visa, eventually having to face the dreaded inteview. ONLY THE CONSUL OFFICE CAN ISSUE AN E2. ALL USCIS IS DOING IS ADJUSTING YOUR STATUS TO PERMIT YOU TO STAY IN THE US IT SODES NOT LOOK AT TH MERITS OF AN E2 APPLICATION

chris
02-05-2007, 06:37 PM
I beg to differ again Peter. We entered on an E2 in 2000, but due to screw up by our VC he missed a deadline for renewing our E2 inland (as was pre 2001). Because of the problems in London, we have maintained our status with USCIS every 2 years, the most recent being August 2006 and we got our approval last week. The questions the USCIS asked this time are no different to what the Embassy would have asked us, as both departments adjudicate against the same Immigration Act. Indeed our questions were about marginality and investment and USCIS quoted the Act to us. The information we supply to USCIS is no different to what we supply to London (except USCIS don't nit pick by asking for stupid metal fasteners!). Both scenarios judge on merit against the Act. I think what I'm saying is that no-one should assume that convincing USCIS is any less easy than convincing London. The business case should be the same. Our experience this time, though does tell us that USCIS IS tightening up on its adjudication of these applications (don't disagree with that either). Hopefully both departments will sing from the same song sheet, which presumably is what should have happened in the first place.
As far as buying a business on a B2 then converting to E2 status and running it, it is risky and runs counter to traditional custom and practise. However, in business terms (seize the opportunity) it does make commerical sense, though not immigration sense. But given the prolonged delays in London, I can well understand why people do it. Ettena is now at week 30 with London. These delays are disgusting and something the State Dept should be ashamed of.

Jax
02-05-2007, 11:12 PM
Hi
My E2 visa was issued in london June 2004and our B2 visa was also issued in London July 2002 and was not canx,The reason i am landlocked is because our E2 visa has expired but our I-94 are valid untill May 2008.We are in the process of renewing oue E2 but my father in law in Australia is having heart problems.

ettena
02-06-2007, 03:00 AM
Hi, thankyou for all of the visa information it is amazing that you become a specialist when everyone has made fatal mistakes for you.
I have asked by attorney whether a failed b2 would be detrimental to my E2 application (for my husband) and seems to think that if the B visa fails it wouldn't affect our application for an E2. His advise is not to try for one at all but hey I didn't come out here to spend 30 weeks and counting apart from my husband or run a business alone. We are unsure whether to go for the B visa, we are not sure whether the honesty of the application will just give them more fuel to say no. At the end of the day a mistake was made and E2 status was filed for me only and not my husband and therefore an overstay occured. It seems mad that you can't file a I-539 I think I am right retrospectively rather than being treated like a criminal - overstayer. As Chris has said if the E2 wait was 8-12 weeks or something remotely normal it wouldn't be a problem. but 30 weeks plus is mad! By the time we go for the appointment I will need a spare suitcase for the additonal paperwork and accounts etc..................... that they will want to see.
I have had E2 status for a year and because we bought the biz within the last quarter of a biz year it was not a good idea to put in with a 2 month tax return which would not have been healthy with biz set up etc.. and we were told that there is no way we would get a visa with the biz at one cent of a loss but how on earth can you invest in a biz in October/November and it not be at a loss in the first two months???? So we needed another years tax return which I am still waiting for and the application is due in in the next two weeks, then 30/33 weeks for an interview. meanwhile both living apart and trying to divide up cents between us.
I don't think the change of status from B to E was a bad idea, I know the owner of my biz and myself would not wait over 30 weeks for someone to buy our business, who wait nearly a year with 10% deposit? If they do then fantastic but when we were buying alot of biz owners were specifying that they didn't want to sell to E2 applicants.:cool:

hopefultreatyinvestor
02-16-2007, 05:10 PM
Hi Guys - I am on a J visa and have just applied to change my status to E2 through the USCIS California Service Center - I am on premium processing - 10 days in to the 15 promised days. The business is a start up with two other partners (I am 53%) owner. Does anyone have any experience of applying for change of status at USCIS with a new start up company???????
I am dying here waiting for news from USCIS. My company is up and running and as I cannot actually work in it yet the business is being held back.

ettena
05-13-2007, 06:02 PM
Hi, I just thought I would give you and update. After 4 months in the UK after being denied a visa waiver, My husband applied for the B2 with all of the relevant and appropriate documentation. Needless to say they had already decided when he got there to deny his B2 on the basis of his previous overstay and on the basis of misrepresentation that he was going to turn his B2 to and E2 when he got the the states. So article 212..blah blah was ticked on his letter of denial. He is told that he is no longer eligible for the visa waiver programme and therefore inadmissable and his only hope of getting back in will be our E interview sometime this year. We are now living apart with no way of seeing each other and just waiting for the dreaded interview. My worry is now that they could deny us the E visa on the basis of his overstay/misrepresenation? or grant the E visa and then him acutually be inadmissable! We like most of you are waiting and I would gauge our date of interview to be end of August at Best or October onwards. We will then have been apart since January.
Having seen Susies note about trying Belfast as they are at a 31 day turnaround. I contacted our visa specialist who strongly advised against changing, saying 'they will know what you are up to'. Er... we are up to jumping the queue, what else... 31 days versus 31 weeks why didn't they think of moving some cases over! Anyway she says don't move it as they will know it has been in London first and will know what your are doing!!! What a complete mess that just started out with one bit of paper not filed in Texas!

anniefromessex
05-13-2007, 07:19 PM
Hi Ettena,

I am sooo sorry you are still in this mess - it must be so heart wrenching for you to be apart from your husband. I can only hope that when you go for your interview that the guy shows some common sense and realises that a mistake was made. There are some there who are decent, just hope you get one of them!!!

My son and his family were turned down for an E-2, they were then advised to go for B Visas (totally wrong move, but you tend to trust your IA) and then they were accused of Visa Shopping and were given so called life bans and deported. My daughter in law is now going to the Embassy in London to try to get a Visa that will allow her into the country to pack up their personal possessions, she is going to be truthful, explain exactly what happened and hopefully they will allow her in, but as I have said in another posting she could still be turned round at POE. Crazy world isn't it.

Anyway, wish you both the very best of luck, please keep us informed and keep your chin up.

Love Anniexxx

byjove
05-13-2007, 07:51 PM
Sometimes you feel when you make the application, you should include a large tube of KY as they will screw you if they can!!!! At least you could clutch at maybe it not being SOOO painful.

There does seem to be the American People! Great (mostly) helpful people who are horrified at what we have to do.

Good luck ettena! I do hope yu and hubs can be together again soon. Shame on you red tape holders for splitting up yet ANOTHER family.

Then.................

There are IMMIGRATION PEOPLE and GOVERNMENT!

byjove
05-13-2007, 08:33 PM
He was put on the next flight home to the uk and didn't even get a drink or food on the plane! He really was treated inhumanely!

:fit:

What ever happened to things being against human rights? Why are the DO GOODERS for illegals screaming human rights, not screaming in our corners too?

InnVic
05-13-2007, 09:13 PM
I know I'm going to get jumped on here - but every piece of advice you read screams DO NOT enter on B visa and then try to adjust and expect no problems. Yes its a pain in the ass having to wait 30 weeks - but most of us here have had to go through the wait. If the seller won't wait 30 weeks then find another business - there is no shortage. If you buy a business before visa is approved then you set yourself up for all kinds of hassle. What if youre denied? Immigration is not easy - E2 is not easy - the rules, although they may seem unfair are there for a reason and if you want to live here then you have to comply. I understand that attorneys can make mistakes but at the end of the day its YOUR life and you should therefore check and confirm that ALL paperwork to make you legal is inplace - ignorance of the situation is not a defence. I accept it must be awful to be in a situation to be parted from your loved ones - but this DOES happen and if nothing else hopefully your story will serve as a warning to anyone out there thinking theres an "easy" way round the system. I sincerely do hope that it gets resolved soon, but I bet with hindsight you'd have done all this differently though.

ettena
05-13-2007, 10:00 PM
Hi. in reply to the wait for the E2 posting. when my husband went for his B2. He demonstrated that he has a home of his own in the uk, A job, funds, credit cards, bank accounts and that he doesn't really care if they give him a B2, a waiver would be better! so that he can't change it to another status but they still didn't buy it. Basically, no tricks he just wants to be with his wife who owns an AMERICAN biz, paying American taxes, so what is the worst that can happen, he comes out to join me and helps me! With regards to the change of status. I had a very well paid job in the UK which was held open via 6 month sabatial leave. I did not intend changing status and didn't even know about it! it is only when the biz operator in the USA said no, I don't want to run this for you I am off to Europe, that my Attorney said why not change your status and come over and run it. If I thought it shouldn't be done, I would never of done it. the problem was they forgot the filing of status for my husband and that is how it ended up overstaying. Forgetting hindsight, what is the real crime, he is helping me run my legimate biz!. Well he isn't now, he is stuck in the UK, I am stuck here, we will probably we turned down and I will be lucky to get back on a waiver to close everything down and be left selling a business from the Uk. Everyone gives you the options but they don;t tell you that they are risks. IF you are offered a change of status from your 'legal eagle' you take it don't you. Sorry to be so negative but this seems such a joke!

anniefromessex
05-14-2007, 02:17 AM
Hi Ettena,

Please don't feel so discouraged or made to feel stupid because of things that have happened to you. It is all very well people telling you this, that and the other, they did things this way, that way, or the other way, in essence we all do things - whether it is the right way or the wrong way, the wrong way always comes back to bite you in the bum but, we can't all be perfect, we all have our little foibles and we shouldn't be made to pay because of it. Heck, at the end of the day you invested in a business, you are married for Christs sake and somebody, ie your Attorney, did not do his job properly - is he eating humble pie now, is he without his wife and family, does he sleep soundly in his bed at night, yeah I'm sure he does - but what has he done to you, screwed you good and proper.

I would never kick a dog when it is down, we should all be in this together, whether what we have done is right or wrong, we have all had to give up something for what should be a better life - and because of paranoia we end up paying too high a price -- for what. You tell me people. Just lately we have had Carol, we have had Steve, we have Dustin - just too many people to mention who because they wanted a better life for themselves and their family are being screwed left right and centre. As far as I am concerned, and I really don't care about me - we are done and dusted as far as I am concerned, but I do feel such empathy for the rest of the people on here who are having to fight on a daily basis for something that they have worked their b....s off to make a reality. Who are we to kick them when they are down - not me. To be honest with you, I would cheer everybody who has bucked this system, good on yer as far as I am concerned - I just wish there could be more of you doing it!!!!! If I could get my son and his family out here and every blasted thing was fabricated I would do it, after all he wouldn't be signing on the dole, he would receive no benefits but I know he would work bloody hard to make it work for him and his family and would ultimately give work to others less fortunate than himself.

Ettena, I am not a religious person but I pray to God that justice is done in your case, screw everybody - you shouldn't have to be away from your husband all this time just to satisfy some cretins need to play God!!!!

In my opinion a lot of Immigration Attorneys don't know which way to turn - I think in a lot of cases they want to buck the system and hope that what they tell you will work - it does in some cases, others it doesn't but when it doesn't they don't have to deal with the fall-out - we do.

Don't be sorry for being negative - you can only tell it like it is, and if some people don't like the truth then sorry you just wait until something happens to make you distrust and dislike the whole immigration system and then see what happens when you post - a whole different ball game altogether.

Keep your chin up Ettena, keep posting and let us know what happens. My thoughts are with you!!

Love Anniexxx

davidmartin_uk
05-14-2007, 08:25 AM
A lot of advice to anyone new to this is DO IT PROPERLY. Get the e2 from London and do not change status. I know it takes a long time and I have heard of other European nationals having first shout on Florida business's because brokers now know of the London problems but remember there are 49 other mainland states many with the same great weather and outdoor life. Trust me there aren't many US buyers around in the other states Also, in Florida, having to buy in the future can often put you at an advantage over other buyers who want a quick sale. Some sellers want to have one last good season whether it be winter or summer and would be quite happy to sell in 9 months time.

Dave

reecey
05-14-2007, 12:55 PM
I agree with whats been said (do it properly) but if they (the embassy) disaprove of change of status why do they allow it ? and charge you an extra $1000 for it ???
I have heard they can issue B visa with a clause "not for change of status" so why dont they issue these instead ? They are giving mixed messages in my opinon.

Kriz1
05-14-2007, 01:48 PM
I go with Dave...FL is not the only State in the USA...we have shops etc for sale on the Cape for years....an English woman took over one a few months ago with little problem...same with a tea room opened by a Brit lady and running full all year round....

InnVic
05-14-2007, 02:24 PM
Annie I don't think anyones kicking ettena when she's down - the situation is tragic and even ettena agrees with the essential message "don't always trust your attorney"! I've had such mixed experience with so called 'professionals' - one tells you one thing another tells you something else, we were told we'd NEVER get a visa by a third......you have to do your own research. Although the US Embassy in London does have inherant problems one thing they do get right is clear and detailed information on their website regarding the loops you have to jump through in order to get a visa. As at the end of the day its your life/money/sanity on the line so as the "business professionals" we are, you owe it to yourself to read up - or be prepared to suffer the consequences. Although theres very little (except support) any of us can do to help ettena I'm sure she'd be the first to agree that if anyone can be prevented from finding themselves in the same situation by reading her story then at least a little something positive has come from this experience. I don't agree with cheering people who buck the system or wishing there were more that do. Part of the reason behind the treatment received by honest people who have made a "genuine mistake" is due to the many people who intentionally 'buck it". Immigration must get sick of this - when these people are stopped they use every excuse under the sun and so when a genuine case turns up how can the POE officer differentiate? If we all did it "the right way" then perhaps there would be more 'give and take" by immigration and we wouldn't all be tarred with the same brush.

anniefromessex
05-15-2007, 12:22 AM
Hi InnVic

I agree with you to a certain extent, but when an honest mistake is made (I know it's hard to tell when it's honest and when it isn't) but my feeling on this is that they really do not use common sense, surely in some cases if an Attorney did make a mistake and they were honest enough to admit it and gave you a letter stating that, then Immigration should look at the broader picture, but my gut feeling is that they wouldn't.

I have had first hand experience of them not looking at the broader picture, if it's not on their card, then the answer is an emphatic No. I know I shouldn't feel the way I do and really bucking the system is wrong as it causes problems for so many others coming after, but sometimes I just get so mad when I hear stuff and then I just want to shout and scream and stamp my feet (a bit like a spoiled child really - but I'm really a spoiled Granny, ha ha)!!

Seriously though, you take when your husband got his speeding ticket, it made you feel sick inside because you felt it could impact on the rest of your life, your husband wasn't speeding but they said he was, I bet you were angry, annoyed and had so many other emotions to boot. That is the way I feel some days because I know what has happened with my son has impacted on all our lives, I feel sad, I feel angry, I feel bitter about the whole system, other days I accept it - after all Ted and I could stay here but what is our life without family around us, especially at our age. I guess what I am trying to say in my usual long winded way is that if your husbands ticket gave them the right to turn you down for your renewal (how absolutely stupid would that be and it will never happen, but you was so worried that it could) - where is the sense of living in fear that what you have worked so hard for could be taken away from you in an instant, and for what!!!

I really think there will never be "give and take" with Immigration - in an ideal world wouldn't that be just wonderful, but as we all know by now it is not an ideal world and we just have to learn to live with the fall out. My piece of philosophy for the day!!!

Love Anniexxx

InnVic
05-15-2007, 12:40 AM
Annie your right - we did feel sick and although now we feel that it "shouldn't " be a problem who know, in a few months time I may be waxing lyrically regarding what a bunch of A-holes the US embassy are. BUt I do still stress we haven't tried to "buck" the system and I wan't trying to be smug about that to the detriment of others here. We all do what we do based on what we believe to be good advice at the time. My point (if I have one!..been to pub after bottle of very nice Shiraz!) is that I do not believe that so called "professional" immigration lawyers have all (if any) of the answers. Some will tell you what you want to hear to get their hands on your cash. You have to do your own research. IF you can hand on heart tick ALL the boxes then you should be fine. If not and your "attorney is telling you "it will be okay" then ask him/her if they'd stake their fee on that - if not walk!

anniefromessex
05-15-2007, 01:02 AM
Now you're talking my language InnVic - Shiraz my favourite. Okay, you have me there, perhaps we should have asked our IA if they would do just that - probably seen us taking a long long hike before now. Having said that in hindsight we would have done so many things differently, we didn't at the time and we are history, so to speak but if our experience helps just one person then I will die happy, as they say!!!!

Do they really have pubs up your way - omg I think I'm going to move to Vermont, I really have missed our pub lunches back in England, any excuse and it was we need to go and have a pub lunch and talk about this, very civilised!!!

Love Anniexxx