I hope you had a wonderful holiday season! It feels like late November to early January is just one big blur.  From casework to holiday parties to signing a new lease (details coming soon!) to this never-ending pandemic…I’m sure you feel it too.

Let’s talk about the good, first. We ended the year with three really meaningful successes (names and details have been changed).

Alan left the United States for his home country in early November. He had an approved I-130 and I-601A and we thought he would be in and out of Guatemala in about two weeks. Unfortunately, it turned into a nearly two-month ordeal. It seems that someone had stolen Alan’s identity in Guatemala and had an extensive criminal history. Alan and his spouse had to talk to various law enforcement agencies around the country to get everything sorted out. Two days before Christmas, his visa was finally approved and Alan was able to return back to the U.S.

Anna is 17 years old and is from the Cayman Islands. Her father was never part of the pictures and sadly, her mother passed away a few years ago. Anna came to the U.S. to visit her uncle, but they wanted ta more permanent solution than just a visit. They scheduled a consultation and we discussed Special Immigrant Juvenile Status. We applied and right after Thanksgiving, Anna’s green card was granted and now her future in the U.S. is secure.

Dora has been a client of ours for about two years. Her ex-wife was mentally and emotionally abusive, so we filed for a petition under the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA). Dora and her ex didn’t live together very long and USCIS sent us two Requests for Evidence about the case. We just found out that the case was approved – a huge relief for Dora who was worried about returning home.

There have also been some challenges. Nearly everyone in our office has had family impacted by COVID through the holiday season. No one here has tested positive, but we have siblings, parents, and spouses who have been sick. We continue to stay closed to the public for health concerns, but I am so hopeful that we’ll be able to see one another face-to-face by the spring. I hope and pray that you and your loved ones have all stayed healthy.

I’m looking forward to 2022 with eager expectations!