Monday, December 22, 2008

Details, Details, Details....

Since we've received Amelia's referral, the most common question we hear is 'When is she coming home?' and when we offer the answer (more than likely late February), the original question is followed 100% of the time with 'Why does it take so long?' So, I will attempt to answer that very question. If you're not into details, the short answer is that we're waiting for immigration and visa paperwork. If details are your thing, keep reading for all the nitty gritty details of the Korean adoption process after referral.

1. In order to officially accept Amelia's referral, we had to make our way through a giant stack of legal paperwork. Luckily, CHS (our agency) is FABULOUS with helping so it really didn't seem that bad! Our acceptance paperwork left the USA for Korea on December 18.

2. We're now waiting for Amelia's 'legals' to arrive from Korea. They'll actually be sent directly to CHS and we'll be notified when they arrive. 'Legals' are essentially a Korean birth certificate and all the legal documentation that proves she's eligible for international adoption.

3. Once the legals arrive, we're able to apply for the I-600. The I-600 grants us permission to bring a specific child (Amelia) into the country.

4. Once we've been granted our I-600, our entire file will then be forwarded to the National Visa Center (NVC). It is 'logged in' and 'logged out'. At this point in the process, I have the ability to track our file. This is a good thing and a bad adoption, I've learned that there really is a such thing as having too much information. A hold-up of even a single day is enough to send an anxiously awaiting parent into a frenzy....

5. Our file leaves the NVC and is sent to the Embassy in Seoul. Once it arrives in Seoul, the embassy sends out some paperwork known as P3, to ESWS, our Korean adoption agency.

6. ESWS returns P3 to the Embassy which means that finally everything is done, and Amelia's visa can be issued!


*Just as a reference point, when we were in process for Graham, his acceptance packet went to Korea on July 10 and we got our travel call on September 12. Assuming we have no paperwork issues we're expecting to be on a similar timeline.