My computer thinks I am in the market for a foreign bride — which is absolutely not the case; I have a wonderful wife and have been happily married for decades.
Why do I make the first statement?
Routinely a message appears on the upper right-hand part of the computer screen saying:
Fiancé Visa – $202/Mo.
Includes the USCIS Fee
6 payments of $202 includes the USCIS Fee
Nobody beats our 99.7% approval rating
I suspect that Google Mail has picked up on the fact that I write about fiancé visas from time to time, and inserts the quoted ad. Or maybe it knows how old I am and runs such ads for males of my age. I will never know.
The irritating ad, which Google will let me eliminate if I so choose, and the "99.7% approval rate" (I type the last few words with my eyebrows raised to the heavens) stirred my curiosity. Has this administration been more careful with issuing K-1 visas than its predecessor? What are the approval rates for K-1 visas generally? How close are RapidVisa's claimed results to reality?
The K-1 visa is often used to bring a spouse to this country, usually a woman, usually from the Third World, and often one who almost immediately deserts the citizen spouse; one who says that he had been abusing her and then files with USCIS, often successfully, as a "self-petitioning spouse" and is rewarded for this conduct with a green card. One hopes that this happens in only a minority of cases, but when it occurs it often ruins the hoodwinked U.S. spouse, as my colleague Dan Cadman and I have reported previously (see here and here).
One of the problems has been — and we have heard from numerous male USC victims — is that the alleged abuser is not allowed by DHS to testify against the alien woman involved, and that most cases at this point are decided in favor of the alien.
We do not have numbers on denials and approvals of the applications of the self-petitioning spouses, but there is statistical data on the issuance or denial of the K-1 application, often an earlier step in these cases:
|FY 2016||FY 2017||FY 2018*|
* Projected from first quarter.
While forecasting a year's results from one quarter's data is a shaky procedure, the combination of a lower volume of approvals, and a higher percentage of denials, over a period of 27 months, is encouraging. These data are from the Department of Homeland Security.
Let's return to the RapidVisa claim of a 99.7 percent success rate. That's filing one bad application out of every 300 when even in FY 2016 the national average was about 40 bad cases in 300.
I do not doubt that a firm that concentrates on a single group of visas, as RapidVisa may do, can perform better than the average, maybe even much better, but 40 times better?