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DV-2019

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Hi Heidi!

O wow! Thanks for the info!! I'm a bit concerned that we didn't get an email from them asking for the info. I hope we're not missing them - will have to go check the spam folders!

We are not sure yet as to where we would like to stay - we have New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Texas in mind. It all depends on where my husband can find work. He is in the steel industry. I am training as a Life and Relationship Coach, so will be able to work from home hopefully.

What type of farming are you interested in?

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Hi Franette, yes don’t stress about not receiving an email request. When you email the documents, KCC auto replies with a ‘received processing’ email, and then a ‘complete or incomplete’ email a few days later. I applied for a fresh SAPS police clearance certificate, and that took six weeks. 

I do pecan nuts and livestock (bonsmara and black angus), so Texas sounds like a good fit. Also interested in intensive ag, like greenhouse tomatoes, therefore Hawaii.

I have read the other topics in the forum of social security cards, bank accounts, drivers, but in what order can I do these, and what do you need before you can get the next? Example:

1. Social security card

2. Bank accounts, and secured credit card

3. Rental address

4. Drivers licence

5. Credit history and score

6. Buy a car, I need a F350 in my life. 

7. ?

 

Thanks for the help!

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50 minutes ago, Heidi556 said:

Hi Franette, yes don’t stress about not receiving an email request. When you email the documents, KCC auto replies with a ‘received processing’ email, and then a ‘complete or incomplete’ email a few days later. I applied for a fresh SAPS police clearance certificate, and that took six weeks. 

I do pecan nuts and livestock (bonsmara and black angus), so Texas sounds like a good fit. Also interested in intensive ag, like greenhouse tomatoes, therefore Hawaii.

I have read the other topics in the forum of social security cards, bank accounts, drivers, but in what order can I do these, and what do you need before you can get the next? Example:

1. Social security card

2. Bank accounts, and secured credit card

3. Rental address

4. Drivers licence

5. Credit history and score

6. Buy a car, I need a F350 in my life. 

7. ?

 

Thanks for the help!

1. SSN should (should) automatically arrive within 2 weeks after you land. Sometimes it doesn’t and you need to go into a SSA office. You may be able to get your number before your card arrives by going in - seems some offices do, some don’t.

2. You technically don’t need a SSN to open a bank account but it’s easier if you have one. Capital One are good for secured credit cards for new immigrants.

3.  If you rent through an agency they might want a credit record. A private landlord will probably be more flexible. Absent a credit record, be prepared to put down a few months’ deposit or show a bank account with a few months’ rent in it.

4. Book for the tests as soon as you land. How long you have before you need it is state dependent, but better to get as soon as possible. Waiting times vary. (People here complain about the DMV a lot but compared to most traffic departments in SA it’s a breeze.) by the time you go in for the test you will need your SSN. Your stamped immigrant visa = temporary green card will be needed too if your plastci card hasn’t arrived yet. You will need proof of residence to take in too (varies by state, check local dmv website, and note the website dmv.org is not official , you need dmv dot state abbreviation usually)

5. This just builds up over time. You will probably have no score for 4-6 months as there won’t be enough history.

6. F350 rotfl. One parked next to me at the supermarket the other day. My car looked like a dinky toy next to it!

7. Phone and cable, utilities, school registration if you have kids.

 

be aware Hawaii is wonderful but it’s also expensive and quite isolated from the rest of the US. I found it like a curious mix of the US and a bit of a third world feeling (but just a bit). Depending where you end up it can take quite a while to get to say a hospital or something, maybe watch some episodes of house hunters set there that give an idea of the pros and cons of lifestyle. One of my best friend’s family comes from Hawaii... all the younger generation left to the mainland. Hawaii and Texas are very, very different in almost every way I can think of. Spending some time in different places to try get a feel is probably a good thing. 

Edited by SJ272

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Hi All

I've posted before, but could not get a certain answer on our current situation.  I was fortunately one of the lucky few that was selected for further processing for the DV draw.  My case number is 25xxx, so according to the bulletin, we should be scheduled for an interview in June :)  Currently on the list is myself, my wife, and our first born son (now 2 years old).  At the time of processing all the documentation, my wife fell pregnant, and we have subsequently had our second child (she's now 2 weeks old).  We have submitted all required documentation, and received a confirmation mail from the KCC confirming that all of our documents are in order.  However, due to our daughter not being born yet at the time, she is not on the list of dependents.  So our current status is that we're waiting for an interview date.  The big question is - do I now add my daughter to our DV-260 list?  We're in the process of getting a passport for her, but obviously don't have one yet - therefore I can't complete her DV-260 form without her passport number.

I've done a bit of research, and according to britsimonsays.com, the following scenario is where we sit (below).

Any advice, that anyone could shed, would be MUCH appreciated...

Thanks in advance!

 

"

Scenario 1: If the birth is before your case is current or scheduled.

In this scenario, as soon as possible after the birth do the following.

  1. Obtain the birth certificate and the passport for the child.
  2. Unlock the DS260’s of both parents (you need to include both parents details in the email to KCC). Add the child on each parents form.
  3. Create a DS260 for the child. If you have time to wait for the passport number, that’s ideal, if not put the passport number frokm one of the parents. If you have time to correct this before the interview that is ideal – if not you can correct that at the interview.
  4. The child will need to attend the medical appointment with the rest of the family and should attend the interview also. The interview and medical fee will be payable for the child.

Note, adding a child will not normally delay the case."

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[at]Kallas, in addition to britsimon’s advice, I’d suggest sending an email to notify KCC that you’ll be adding the baby so that they have a heads up. IN case they schedule you before you get the update done they will be able to let the consulate know (once you are scheduled you won’t be able to update the DS260).

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Thanks [at]SJ272 - I've dropped them a mail. Will post whatever happens in case someone else ever find themselves in this situation 😊

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I am so thankful for the answers and help. Managed to talk to a forum member who emigrated and is now living in Hawaii, all thanks to this forum. And did watch some House Hunters set in Hawaii... sjoe $$$. Where did you go SJ272? Two weeks to go for the next bulletin. How is you prep going Franette? 

On my side, I have to go take fresh photos for the medical and interview, get bank statements and other financials, and make copies of everything I'm taking to the interview. Then when I receive 2NL, confirm the appointment on consulate (not embassy) website, do medical. That's it. I have gone through the documents list, checklists, links to other lists et cetera and have; Birth certificate unabridged, Police clearance new and old, DS-260 confirmation page and completed page, Military records signed no records, Bank statements, Property valuation, Share certificates, 1NL, Matric certificate, Degree, Work experience proof appointment certificates, Passports old ones too. Hope this helps someone. 

Through the past weekend, I might have read every thread on this forum, haha. I see and from SJ272's advice above, that the social security card may take a while to get. Planning on booking an Airbnb for the first week or so, catch some waves on Oahu, wait for the card, open a bank account, get a month or so rental, go to DMV for drivers, get a local phone. 🙂 I have a farm in SA, and will be back and fourth, so will keep a close eye on not "abandoning my permanent residence" in the US. I have read the many threads on the topic. I have a business to run in SA, so will spend four months of the year in SA, and the balance in Hawaii. Also want to buy a house soon, so that I can prove my primary residence is in the US. Not planning on spending more than 6 months abroad (abroad from US), and so fulfilling the 30 months over 5 years. Can't wait 😄

Edited by Heidi556

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On 3/29/2019 at 9:41 PM, Kallas said:

Thanks [at]SJ272 - I've dropped them a mail. Will post whatever happens in case someone else ever find themselves in this situation 😊

My husband and I got married after he submitted his DS-260 and we emailed KCC and asked them to unlock it for editing which they did. So we created another DS-260 for me and submitted that in January. I'm sure they'll do the same for you unless your interview has been scheduled already.

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On 3/22/2019 at 3:25 PM, SJ272 said:

1. SSN should (should) automatically arrive within 2 weeks after you land. Sometimes it doesn’t and you need to go into a SSA office. You may be able to get your number before your card arrives by going in - seems some offices do, some don’t.

2. You technically don’t need a SSN to open a bank account but it’s easier if you have one. Capital One are good for secured credit cards for new immigrants.

3.  If you rent through an agency they might want a credit record. A private landlord will probably be more flexible. Absent a credit record, be prepared to put down a few months’ deposit or show a bank account with a few months’ rent in it.

4. Book for the tests as soon as you land. How long you have before you need it is state dependent, but better to get as soon as possible. Waiting times vary. (People here complain about the DMV a lot but compared to most traffic departments in SA it’s a breeze.) by the time you go in for the test you will need your SSN. Your stamped immigrant visa = temporary green card will be needed too if your plastci card hasn’t arrived yet. You will need proof of residence to take in too (varies by state, check local dmv website, and note the website dmv.org is not official , you need dmv dot state abbreviation usually)

5. This just builds up over time. You will probably have no score for 4-6 months as there won’t be enough history.

6. F350 rotfl. One parked next to me at the supermarket the other day. My car looked like a dinky toy next to it!

7. Phone and cable, utilities, school registration if you have kids.

 

be aware Hawaii is wonderful but it’s also expensive and quite isolated from the rest of the US. I found it like a curious mix of the US and a bit of a third world feeling (but just a bit). Depending where you end up it can take quite a while to get to say a hospital or something, maybe watch some episodes of house hunters set there that give an idea of the pros and cons of lifestyle. One of my best friend’s family comes from Hawaii... all the younger generation left to the mainland. Hawaii and Texas are very, very different in almost every way I can think of. Spending some time in different places to try get a feel is probably a good thing. 

You are way ahead of us with your planning. 🙂  Thank you for the questions - we are struggling with the same. We have a dog child, so at the moment we're focusing on getting quotes and process sorted for taking her with us.

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I am definitely an over-planner, but this is a life changing opportunity, so I am putting lots of effort in. But Franette, I think the next bulletin may be very close to your case number hey! Regarding your pup (what breed?), last year a girl from Jhb went through the same DV emigration, also with a dog (a Pomeranian) they are pretty small. She did lots of research and talking with the different airlines, and she is in Florida now with their pup. She has a youtube channel www.youtube.com/c/stephsspace I think you find it valuable.

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3 hours ago, Heidi556 said:

I am so thankful for the answers and help. Managed to talk to a forum member who emigrated and is now living in Hawaii, all thanks to this forum. Two weeks to go for the next bulletin. How is you prep going Franette? 

On my side, I have to go take fresh photos for the medical and interview, get bank statements and other financials, and make copies of everything I'm taking to the interview. Then when I receive 2NL, confirm the appointment on consulate (not embassy) website, do medical. That's it. I have gone through the documents list, checklists, links to other lists et cetera and have; Birth certificate unabridged, Police clearance new and old, DS-260 confirmation page and completed page, Military records signed no records, Bank statements, Property valuation, Share certificates, 1NL, Matric certificate, Degree, Work experience proof appointment certificates, Passports old ones too. Hope this helps someone. 

Through the past weekend, I might have read every thread on this forum, haha. I see and from SJ272's advice above, that the social security card may take a while to get. Planning on booking an Airbnb for the first week or so, catch some waves on Oahu, wait for the card, open a bank account, get a month or so rental, go to DMV for drivers, get a local phone. 🙂 I have a farm in SA, and will be back and fourth, so will keep a close eye on not "abandoning my permanent residence" in the US. I have read the many threads on the topic. I have a business to run in SA, so will spend four months of the year in SA, and the balance in Hawaii. Also want to buy a house soon, so that I can prove my primary residence is in the US. Not planning on spending more than 6 months abroad (abroad from US), and so fulfilling the 30 months over 5 years. Can't wait 😄

I am also so thankful for everybody's input! You sound like you have it all figured out Heidi - that's awesome. We're really a bit adrift at the moment. We are also in the process of getting copies made of all the supporting documents and then we have to get them certified. We applied for our police clearance last Friday and were told it could take up to 12 weeks. We have our matric certificates, degrees, etc. We received our unabridged birth certificates a while ago and our unabridged marriage certificate we only received last week (after applying in Oct already!). 

How many photo's do we need for medical and interview please? Do we need anything for Military records if neither of us have been? What is 1NL and 2NL?

We're still trying to decide how we're going to spend the first few months - maybe we'll travel a bit first and go check out the different states that we're considering, or my husband may start applying for jobs first thing. I was also thinking Airbnb as a monthly rental to start off with, or otherwise one of those aparthotel places, but we'll have our fur baby with us, so not sure if those places allow animals. The other option is to buy a second hand RV, or rent one and just tour around a bit to start off with.

Your plan for Hawaii sounds very cool!

Edited by FranetteM

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So on the KCC email requesting documents, one of the documents is Military records, so I made a pdf saying I never served in any military, signed it. Have you emailed KCC you docs, or received an email request from them? Good thing you have marriage and birth certificates done, I'm sure the Police clearance will be quicker than 12 weeks, mine 6 weeks. I think two photos for medical, two for interview, better to get more. 1NL = the page that says "You have been selected for further processing..." print that page. 2NL replaces that page when you check and is the interview appointment details.

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33 minutes ago, Heidi556 said:

I am definitely an over-planner, but this is a life changing opportunity, so I am putting lots of effort in. But Franette, I think the next bulletin may be very close to your case number hey! Regarding your pup (what breed?), last year a girl from Jhb went through the same DV emigration, also with a dog (a Pomeranian) they are pretty small. She did lots of research and talking with the different airlines, and she is in Florida now with their pup. She has a youtube channel www.youtube.com/c/stephsspace I think you find it valuable.

I don't think there is such a thing as over-planning haha - I am usually like that myself, but I'm trying to get my Life Coach and Relationship Coach Certifications done as soon as possible so that I can get my own business set-up and start getting experience. I am working on "Plan B", which is if "Plan A - getting Green Cards" fails for any reason whatsoever, then I will be able to support us financially while my husband looks for a company to sponsor him. I have also applied for 2020 DV lottery just in case! 😉

Thank you for the youtube link - I'll be sure to check it out. We have already done the rabies vaccination. We still need to get the microchip done and then they have to check for some or other type of worm within 5 days of her flight and issue a health certificate. She is a Terrier mixed breed and maybe Ridgeback - we adopted her from our local animal shelter, so not quite sure.

Edited by FranetteM

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9 minutes ago, Heidi556 said:

So on the KCC email requesting documents, one of the documents is Military records, so I made a pdf saying I never served in any military, signed it. Have you emailed KCC you docs, or received an email request from them? Good thing you have marriage and birth certificates done, I'm sure the Police clearance will be quicker than 12 weeks, mine 6 weeks. I think two photos for medical, two for interview, better to get more. 1NL = the page that says "You have been selected for further processing..." print that page. 2NL replaces that page when you check and is the interview appointment details.

Oh, ok I'm with you. That sounds like a good idea. No, we haven't received the email yet. I think as soon as we have all the certified copies done we must submit that together with the proof of police clearance application and then we can submit the clearances once we've received them. Did you get the property valuation done by the Bank, or did you use an estate agent? Is it necessary? We will be able to prove that we can support ourselves with bank statements?

Our Financial Adviser is on Honeymoon at the moment and we were going to schedule an appointment with him as soon as he gets back to ask him all tax and financial questions, for example how much money one can take out of the country and about what to do with our retirement funds.

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FranetteM - good luck with everything - and it is pretty easy here with dogs.  A few suggestions for initial accommodation with a dog:
- Motel 6 - is is usually very basic, but Bed, TV, bathroom, but very basic price too - and pet friendly without a pet fee. Fine for a night or two.
- La Quinta Inn - quite a bit nicer than Motel 6, more expensive, but still less than most 'fancier' hotels.  Most are no pet fee, and some are with a low pet fee (e.g. $10 per night)
- Marriot Towneplace Suites - great option for a longer stay (I stayed some weeks there with a large dog) - they have a $100 pet fee, which would be a lot for a 1 night stay, but if you stay 2 or 3 weeks, it works out next to nothing per night.  These come with a fully equipped kitchenette, so would be a good option for a longer stay.  There are many other brands which offer similar, so you will easily find something in your budget and in your location of choice.

RV rentals can be expensive, and also bear in mind you can't go/park just anywhere with one, so if it is your sole form of transport, it will limit you somewhat.  Fuel costs are also going to be high in an RV if you are going to do a lot of traveling.  That said, it can be a really nice solution, but a car, and using Motel 6's for example, may be a much more flexible way (e.g. a camp site for a RV with hookups will be $30-$40 per night at least, and you can get a Motel 6 in most places for around $60 per night).

Also, see a vet soon afer arrival for heartwork medications.  Heartworm is prevalent in the USA, and is very nasty (fatal in the long term) - vets will pull a blood sample to test for it, and then prescribe a tablet that they need to take every month.  It is less of a problem in the Northern (cold) states, but is rampant in the warmer states - mosquito borne. Nothing to worry about, but don't skip this step!

Wise to speak to your financial advisor - they will be able to tell you how much you can take out of SA without doing financial emigration  For an ordinary trip (i.e. as a tourist/visitor - you can take out R1 million each with ease).  You can do more than this as an investment allowance, or, if you financially emigrate, much more.   If you have retirement funds in a RA (e.g. at Old Mutual, or other similar) - the ONLY way you can release those funds is to do financial emigration.  Once you cash out, you pay tax in SA on them.  Any type of retirement fund in SA is not transferable to a similar product in the USA - it works differently here.  You will have to liquidate the cash, and then re-invest them this side.

Enjoy the ride!

 

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