I recently went through the successful application to remove conditions on residence (I-751) with my wife, and found there were a few things I could have done better with my initial submission.
We unfortunately received (and responded to) an RFE (Request for Evidence) due to insufficient documentation for the petition. I had included standard items, like the last joint bank statements, marriage certificate, etc, but it wasn’t enough to prove a “bona fide” marriage.
Some tips I’d suggest for anyone looking to file this on their own:
- Consult a lawyer when preparing your filings. Yes, it will cost you $300-$600, but it can help you prevent mistakes at the onset.
- Draft up a cover letter detailing each piece of evidence, the time span it covers, across various categories
- Include any beneficiary information you have
- Your evidence should span the entire period of marriage–in my RFE I submitted information from just before our marriage date, quarterly, to the present
- Highlighting the petitioner’s name, spouse’s name, and dates on evidence will help your examiner work the case faster
- Include a couple affidavits; it’s easy to ask your friends/colleagues to draft one, and helpful.
Note: I am not a lawyer, and this is not legal advice, just my own personal experience.
I’m looking at two Staples “Easy Rebate” giftcards right now, each of them for $350, and wondering what can I do with them? They expire in just under six months, and have lots of interesting fees and conditions attached, so I am eager to use them up sooner rather than later. However, they are surprisingly hard to use. In spite of being a “debit” card, they tell you always run the transaction as credit, and specify that “ATMs cannot be used to withdraw cash.” I’ve tried:
- Getting a cash advance at the bank for the full amount (declined)
- Charging an Amazon giftcard for the full $350 (declined)
- Talking to a Staples store manager (spent 15m on the phone, no luck)
- Buying Kindle giftcards at an in-store Best Buy (declined)
After I ran the first Amazon attempt, a “test” pre-authorization charge of $1 went through and apparently will stick there for 7 days, so I now have $349 on each card to figure out how to extract:
The cards think they have money. They decline everything!
My next test will be to titrate up Amazon giftcards, starting at $10 and working my way up, and seeing if they will let smaller charges through. 10 minutes later, it worked. So, Staples won’t let you use the card all at once–weird! I’m charging $100 now … success! $200 would make life easier, so trying that now … DECLINED. Alas. Also don’t submit orders > $100 in a row until the first one clears–major yuck.
My advice to you if you go the Staples “Easy” Rebate route is to take the cheque option. It’s far more painless. Check out FrequentMiler’s Staples keeps on giving post where it’s all explained. Just select “I would like to see other options for my reward” when filling out your rebate form, then choose “Select Rebate Check” for the best option.
Obama wasn’t content to rest up after his illegal assassination of Osama bin Laden back in May, this time stepping up his game to take out American citizen Anwar al-Awlaki with a predator drone / Hellfire missile in Yemen. The audacity of conducting public assassinations on the territory of sovereign nations aside, the New York Times picks right up on the issue of due process:
The strike appeared to be the first time in the American-led war on terrorism since the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks that an American citizen had been deliberately killed by American forces, a step that has raised contentious constitutional issues in the United States. It was also the second high-profile killing of an Al Qaeda leader in the past five months under the Obama administration[.]
The White House decision to make Mr. Awlaki a top priority to be hunted down and killed was controversial, given his American citizenship.
The American Civil Liberties Union, which fought unsuccessfully in the American court system to challenge the government’s legal justification for its so-called targeted killings program, which was used to take aim at Mr. Awlaki, condemned that program in reaction to the news of Mr. Awlaki’s death. “As we’ve seen today, this is a program under which American citizens far from any battlefield can be executed by their own government without judicial process, and on the basis of standards and evidence that are kept secret not just from the public but from the courts,” Jameel Jaffer, the A.C.L.U.’s deputy legal director, said in a statement.
For what it’s worth, Foreign Policy’s blog agrees that Anwar was a US citizen due an appropriate trial. The correct course of action would have been extradition from Yemen to the US for trial.