I am no longer answering questions with regard to K1 Visa or AOS processing. Please read the following to understand why:
The K1 Visa Information Pages of this Blog are Now Zombies
K1 Visa Application Process: No spoon feeding policy
Has it already been a year?
Thank you for dropping by and good luck on your journey to the States!
MY K-1 VISA EXPERIENCE
STEP 6: Gather Required Documents
Disclaimer: Please read disclaimer on the K-1 Visa Page of this site
Please refer to this article with regard to organizing your timeline.
DOCUMENTS IN THE LIST OF INSTRUCTIONS THAT WERE APPLICABLE TO ME
I’ll be using the list provided by the embassy (February 2014 version) and then I will include my own notes. I will also list them down by order of how I acquired them.
Please use the instructions provided in the Forms and Packets, US Embassy in Manila page and download its link when you prepare your own documents as they might have already updated it by then. The list below does not include all the information in said instructions so please do not use the information I have written here as a substitute for the real thing.
Acquired: January 2013
You must have a passport valid for at least six (6) months… – K1/K2 Interview Preparation Instructions (English) (PDF – 287 KB, February 2014 Version)
I renewed mine in January 2013 and it will expire in 2018 so I didn’t have to bother with this one. However, if you have to get a passport, or if your passport will expire in 12 months or less, I would suggest that you get your passport before visa payment or even earlier (when you receive your NOA2, or even much earlier!). From hereon, you will be asked by various offices and entities for your passport number and it’s always best to show only one and the same for consistency as you will also be identified by this.
2) OTHER COUNTRY POLICE CERTIFICATES (JAPAN)
Requested: March 13, 2014; Acquired: May 29, 2014; Validity: 6 months
Applicants aged 16 years and older must also present police certificates from other countries where they have lived for six (6) months or more after reaching the age of 16… – K1/K2 Interview Preparation Instructions (English) (PDF – 287 KB, February 2014 Version)
This was applicable to me as I was an exchange student in Tokyo for 11 months way back in my undergraduate years. I took a huge risk here because we only had the NOA1 when I went to the Japan Embassy in Manila. Usually, they would ask for a request letter from the US Embassy and the US Embassy usually does not provide for one unless the case has already been forwarded to them by the NVC. So my plan was to go there with just a copy of our NOA1 and try my luck… and I got really lucky!
At the Japan Embassy
I went to the Japan Embassy on a weekday and was in by 8:30 AM (they are open from 8:30 AM to 12:30 PM and 13:30 PM to 17:15 PM). I brought my passport with me and three 2×2 ID pictures. The consul gave me a fingerprinting form to bring with me to the PNP Crime Laboratory in Camp Crame where I will get my fingerprinting done.
At Camp Crame
I proceeded to the PNP Crime Lab (back building, second floor) and told the staff that I wished to have my fingerprints taken for my Japan Police clearance. They gave me a payment slip which I brought to the Landbank branch inside Camp Crame (walking distance from the Crime Lab and near the mini stadium/field) to pay the fee of 250 pesos. I went back to the Crime Lab where I filled out forms and had my fingerprints taken. They will ask for a 2×2 ID picture so that’s why I had them with me. I was out by 10:30 AM.
Back at the Japan Embassy
I was back at the Embassy at 11ish. I handed the consul the fingerprinting form and he gave me another form to fill out. He photocopied my passport and gave me a slip which I needed to bring when I claim my clearance. Standard processing time is 60 days.
After two months… At the Japan Embassy
I had been calling the Japan Embassy requesting for status every Wednesday and Friday (they usually receive clearances/documents Tuesday and Thursday afternoons) after May 13. Unfortunately, my clearance was held up a bit for some unknown reason and I only got it on May 29. The Japan Embassy called me up that morning and I claimed it after lunch the same day. I brought with me the claiming slip and my passport. They handed me a sealed brown envelope and reminded me that although it was my clearance, only the consul in the US Embassy had the authority to open it.
3) EVIDENCE OF SUPPORT
You should be able to demonstrate that you will not become a public charge or be a burden on the U.S. taxpayers for financial support. A completed I-134 Affidavit of Support Form with original signature will be useful to the consular officer to evaluate your petitioner’s ability to be financially responsible for you. You should also submit your petitioner’s most recent U.S. Federal income tax return (Form 1040) and wage statements (Form W-2). Employment letters stating salaries and bank statements may be included to substantiate the I-134… – K1/K2 Interview Preparation Instructions (English) (PDF – 287 KB, February 2014 Version)
A sent his signed (in black ink) Form I-134 (Affidavit of Support) through ordinary mail sometime in March. I received it a couple of weeks after. He also sent me PDF copies of his Form W-2 and Form 1040 for the years 2009 to 2013, which I printed out.
We did not include any employment letter and bank statements. A and I were confident about this due to the following reasons:
– A is single and has never been married (so he’s not paying for anyone except for himself and his own needs etc.)
– A earns an annual salary of well above the poverty guideline
– A has been working for the same company since 2004 so he didn’t send an employment letter. The W-2 would suffice. During the interview, I only handed the consul the 2013 documents (W-2 and 1040) and kept the older ones in my bag in case they wanted proof of long-term employment.
4) BIRTH CERTIFICATE
Your birth certificate should be a copy issued by the National Statistics Office (NSO) on security paper (not from the Local Civil Registry Office)… – K1/K2 Interview Preparation Instructions (English) (PDF – 287 KB, February 2014 Version)
5) CERTIFICATE OF NO MARRIAGE RECORD (CENOMAR)
If you have never contracted marriage, a CENOMAR (Singleness) issued by the National Statistics Office (NSO) and printed on NSO security paper should be submitted… – K1/K2 Interview Preparation Instructions (English) (PDF – 287 KB, February 2014 Version)
Both Requested: April 8, 2014 ;Both Acquired: April 14, 2014; Validity: 6 months for the CENOMAR
As I have already requested for my birth certificate before, I knew that it wouldn’t take long for it to be delivered. I chose to order mine online using E-Census. I ordered three copies of each. You may want to consider ordering more for your birth certificate as you will need them eventually for your adjustment of status.
E-Census accepts payments through BDO and Unionbank (over-the-counter, ATM, and Internet Banking). As I have a BDO account, I paid through online banking.
BDO Online Payment
Delivery and Receipt
I received mine on April 14, approximately 6 days after I ordered them online.
6) NBI CLEARANCE (Green Form)
Acquired: April 29, 2014; Validity: 1 year from date of issuance
Applicants aged 16 years and older must have a valid Record Clearance (for travel abroad purposes) from the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI). Clearances should be in the applicant’s current name, birth certificate name, maiden name and any aliases or nicknames used, including different spellings you have used of those names. An official letter of explanation from the NBI is required for any notation of “No criminal record” or “No pending case”… – K1/K2 Interview Preparation Instructions (English) (PDF – 287 KB, February 2014 Version)
Online Registration Form
It is best to fill out the NBI Clearance Online Registration Form before going to any NBI office or satellite branch. Trust me, this will save you so much time. I’ll explain this later on.
Once done (and make sure all your entries are correct before submitting!), write down your Registration Code. Better yet, print the whole page. You will need to bring this with you when you finally get your NBI clearance.
Required Things to Bring
Please check the NBI Clearance Procedure page for more details.
I brought my voter’s ID and my driver’s license and their photocopies. Accounts of experiences vary when it comes to the required identification. Others were required to bring photocopies, others were only asked for one proof of identification. So I was trying to be safe by bringing two ID cards and their photocopies, plus the copy of my last NBI clearance (circa 2009). On the day itself, I was only asked for one ID.
Bring a black ballpoint pen. Sign pen or any pen that makes the ink leak through the back of the paper is a no-no.
I went to the NBI Main Clearance Center along UN Avenue on a weekday and arrived there at 4:15 AM. I chose the main one because it can accommodate a lot of applicants. The satellite branches often times have a cut off from any number between 250 and 500.
Anyway, at 4 in the morning, there was already a line outside the building but it was still quite short. We were made to go inside and there were three separate lines – for those who will start at Step 1 (Data Entry and Verification – and this was a very, very long line), those who registered online, and those who already requested their clearances a few days before but their names got a hit so they were made to go back and claim their clearances.
I started at Step 2: Payment. The counter opened at about 5:30 AM. I paid 115 PHP for Travel Abroad USA.
I then proceeded to Step 3: Picture Taking and Biometrics. The staff there asked for my Registration Code. I handed him my print out. After taking my picture and fingerprints, he showed me his monitor and asked me to verify the information there.
I think this is the time when you should tell the staff about any AKA (maiden names versus married names etc.). I read that the US Embassy is very particular with that. As I am single and have never been married, I did not not bother with this.
Also, my name used to always have a hit (meaning there was someone else out there bearing the same or similar name as I and who had done some kind of crime) but for some wonderful reason, this time I was able to claim my clearance right there and then! There were a few people before me who had their receipts noted to come back at a later date as their names had hits.
My last stop was Step 4: Printing. It was done in just a matter of seconds. Things I checked were:
– Was it printed on green paper?
– Did it say for Travel Abroad: USA?
– Are the entries and their spellings correct? (Name, Birthday, Birthplace)
– Did they note “No criminal record” or “No pending case?” If either was the case, I should have had to ask the NBI to include an official letter of explanation for those. Mine read “No Record on File” so I was safe.
I was out of the building by 6 AM.
Also, do not go wearing shorts, short skirts, tank tops, or flip-flops when you get your clearance. They may not allow you inside the building. In other words, dress appropriately.
Better bring an exact amount of 115 PHP so that the cashier will be happy. For the record, I made her happy.
7) VISA PHOTOGRAPHS
Validity: Must be taken within the last 6 months
You must bring three (3) color photographs; two are for the visa and one is for the medical report. Size and format specifications must be strictly observed… – K1/K2 Interview Preparation Instructions (English) (PDF – 287 KB, February 2014 Version)
These are 2×2 ID Pictures with white background. Uniforms are a no-no. I wore a decent black collared top. I also tied my hair back because my ears should be showing. I didn’t smile and put on a what I thought was a very neutral face (but A said I looked angry).
I chose a photo studio that could give me a digital copy of the ID pictures (in a CD) since I needed to upload one for the Online Form DS-160.
I had 6 pictures printed, just in case. I wrote the following information at the back of each picture:
– Last name, First name and middle name
– K-1 Visa for USA
These pictures will be submitted on the day of your medical examination, not during the visa interview.
8) NONIMMIGRANT VISA ELECTRONIC APPLICATION (DS-160) CONFIRMATION PAGE
You must print the DS-160 Confirmation Page that contains the barcode information to bring to your interview. – K1/K2 Interview Preparation Instructions (English) (PDF – 287 KB, February 2014 Version)
Use the form here. I won’t go into much detail here, but these are some things you may want to know before filling this out:
– Read and strictly follow the instructions. The form is very straightforward but very lengthy so take your time reading it before filling it out.
– The form can be saved and you can come back to it but only within the next 30 days from when you started.
– Other people can assist you when filling out this form. But when asked to sign and submit at the end of the form, you, the beneficiary, should be the one to physically click the button.
– You will need to upload a digital copy of your 2×2 ID picture.
– If you mess up, you can fill out another form. Just don’t forget to bring the printed confirmation page of the latest, or rather the most accurate Form DS-160 you filled out.
I sent the confirmation page to my e-mail. It was a PDF attachment. It had my confirmation number and its bar code. When you have yours printed out, make sure that it is clear and the bar code is not broken. The US Embassy in Manila uses a bar code scanner for easy access of documents in their database.
9) EVIDENCE OF A GENUINE ENGAGEMENT
You must be prepared to prove to the consular officer that you have a genuine relationship with your petitioner and a clear intention to marry within 90 days of admission into the U.S….- K1/K2 Interview Preparation Instructions (English) (PDF – 287 KB, February 2014 Version)
This is basically a copy of our Form I-129F. I brought the original of the following:
– Plane tickets/stubs from A’s most recent trip to the Philippines
– Plane tickets/stubs from my trip to the US
– 5 Selected photos from our most recent meeting
– 2 to 3 Selected photos from each time we had met (that’s twice a year)
– 2 Selected photos of A and I showing off my engagement ring (we didn’t include the receipt for the ring, although other people have done it)
– Photocopy of our exchange of greeting cards through the years
I was never asked to show not even one during the visa interview.
10) MEDICAL EXAMINATION
All K1 and K2 visa applicants must complete a medical examination at St. Luke’s Extension Clinic at least a week before the interview appointment… – K1/K2 Interview Preparation Instructions (English) (PDF – 287 KB, February 2014 Version)
I will write more about this on a separate article.
DOCUMENTS IN THE LIST OF INSTRUCTIONS THAT WERE NOT APPLICABLE TO ME
11) COURT AND PRISON RECORDS
12) MILITARY OR POLICE SERVICE RECORDS
13) DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY (DHS) DOCUMENTS
14) PROOF OF TERMINATION OF A PRIOR MARRIAGE
Schedule your Visa Interview
Affidavit of Support Form I-134 (USCIS)
Forms and Packets, US Embassy in Manila
K1/K2 Interview Preparation Instructions (English) (PDF – 287 KB, February 2014 Version)