My wife and I just recently received Form I-797C (Notice of Action) from the USCIS. This was the most joyous day of our lives, notwithstanding the day we exchanged our wedding vows.
Why?, This NOA informed us that we are only one step away from my wife becoming permanent resident and then citizen of the USA. We had mailed in form I-751 as the petition to remove the 2 year expiration on her permanent residency since we had been married less than 6 months when we got her Green Card. The cost for filing the petition to remove the 2 year condition on her permanent residency was $590 which includes the $80 biometric fee(digital fingerprints) that we will travel to Lubbock,Texas to have completed.
My wife, from the Philippines, and I were both quite concerned about how long it would take to make her a 10 year permanent resident of the US. I will list a schedule/timeline below to help assuage the stress many other couples experience while waiting for permanent residency and ultimately USA citizenship! I also want to stress that we did all this without the help of a lawyer or attorney. All the immigration forms at the USCIS website are easy to fill out and come with very straightforward instructions. There is no need to hire a lawyer if you have the patience to read the instructions that accompany the forms provided at the USCIS website. Most of the time, you really do not need the instructions as the citizenship/green card forms are very clear.
11/13/2012 – We mailed form I-751(enclosed $590) to VSC(Vermont service center)
11/17/2012 – Received I-751 Receipt Notice extending my wife’s conditional residency 1 year and indicating an ASC appointment notice was forthcoming.
11/21/2012 – $590 check cleared the VSC field office, St. Albans, VT
12/01/2012 – received ASC appointment notice for biometrics scheduled for 12/20 at the USCIS Application Support Center(ASC) on Slide Road in Lubbock, TX !!!