Orphan Visa Processing in Vietnam Embassy of the United States of America Hanoi, Vietnam December 15, 2005
Contact Information • Website: http://vietnam.usembassy.gov/orphan_visas.html • Email: HanoiAdoptions@state.gov • Facsimile: 84-4-831-4578 • Telephone: 84-4-831-4590
Make an Appointment to: • File an I-600 petition and complete the I-604 interview (one appointment) • File the orphan application and complete the visa interview (one appointment) • Meet with a Consular Officer regarding an adoption related issue
How/When of Appointments • Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays (except local and American holidays). • Send an email to HanoiAdoptions@state.gov, providing the following information: • Name of the Petitioner(s): • Name of the Beneficiary(ies): • Requested time/date (within the parameters above): • Alternate times/dates: • Telephone Number: • The Sender of the email will be notified via email (or telephone), often within an hour, of the time/date of the appointment.
Authentication of Documents • Vietnam is not a party to a treaty called the Hague Convention Abolishing the Requirement of Legalization for Foreign Public Documents ("Hague Legalization Convention"). • Therefore, documents must be authenticated--the cumbersome, time-consuming process of obtaining a series of certifications known as the "chain authentication method". • Such documents range from powers of attorney, affidavits, birth, death and marriages records, incorporation papers, deeds, patent applications, home studies and other legal papers.
Submitting the I-600 in Hanoi • Make an appointment. Come at appointed time. • Submit all paperwork. (10-15 minutes) • Interview by Consular Officer (15-30 minutes) • The I-600 petition, supporting documents and I-604 are sent to USCIS HCMC for adjudication. • Make appointment for orphan visa application/interview. • Await I-600 approval. (48 hours)
USCIS approves the I-600 I-600 will be stamped with the CIS approval, signed, and dated Approved I-600 will be sent to the Consular Section in Hanoi PAPs come to Consular Section at the time of visa application/interview appointment USCIS investigates USCIS will notify the PAPs via a letter emailed/faxed to the Consular Section Consular Section Hanoi will notify the PAPs and/or ASPs PAPs must inquire with USCIS HCMC; no action by Consular Section Hanoi until the I-600 is approved. What happens after the I-604 interview?
The Medical Examination • The medical examination must be conducted by one of the Embassy’s Panel Physicians: • SOS International in Hanoi • Cho Ray Hospital in HCMC • International Office of Migration in HCMC • Cost of the medical exam is $40 (14 and under) • The adopted child must have his/her Vietnamese passport to have the medical exam. • DS-2053 will be sealed in an envelop and given to the Parents/Guardians. Please bring the sealed envelop to the appointment for the visa application/interview.
The Visa Interview • Make an appointment. Come at appointed time. • Submit all paperwork. (10-15 minutes) • Pay visa fees ($380.00, in USD or major credit card) at the Consular Cashier • Interview by Consular Officer (15-45 minutes) • (1) review the I-600 petition, • (2) verify the child's status as an orphan, • (3) establish that the prospective parent(s) have legal custody, • (4) survey the child's medical condition, and • (5) confirm that the child has the required travel documentation.
Required Documentation • USCIS-approved I-600 and supporting documents • Affidavit of Support, if necessary • The final Vietnamese adoption decree • The child's birth certificate • The child's Vietnamese passport • The sealed medical exam report (Form DS 2053) • Two (5cm by 5cm) photos of the child, white background • The visa application (Form DS 230)
Picking Up the Visa • Once the orphan visa has been approved by the Consular Officer, PAPs will be given a ticket to pick up the the visa-ed passport next working day. The ticket allows anyone to pick up the passport. *If our computer systems are working. Our systems go down more often during the rainy season and when new systems or equipment is being installed in DC.
If an investigation is needed… • PAPs will be notified at the time of the interview and provided a written notice that the case requires “administrative processing”. • The Consular Officer will provide an estimated date when a decision can be made and/or a follow-up interview will be needed.
Post-Adoption Reports • Vietnam’s Policy Vietnam requires post-adoption reports to provide assurance to political leaders and adoption officials in the country of origin that children they place in permanent families through inter-country adoption in the United States are receiving appropriate care and protection. • Parents’ Responsibility Parents have the responsibility to provide reports. The Embassy has asked the GVN to contact parents directly to request these reports. • Policy of the United States Failure to provide post-adoption reports may put at risk inter-country adoption programs for U.S. parents who wish to adopt in the future. Accordingly, the Department of State strongly encourages parents to comply with post-adoption reporting requirements.