Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Delays and Paperwork

Seriously - the adoption process is definately a way to test one's patience, flexibility and ability to be kind.

Two weeks later than hoped, we get our documents back from the Secretary of State and Peru Consulate in Denver - only to find that 3 documents were unable to be legalized by the Peru Consulate in Denver. Instead, I have to send these papers to the Peru Consulate in Chicago - which delays us, yet another, week.

HOWEVER - our adoption agency said we could go ahead and Fed-Ex the majority of the dossier to Peru - yes, indeed, there is a bit of good news! Since all the documents have to be translated first, our person in Peru can go ahead and get started on what we have. Then, when we send the last 3 documents down, she will be ready to finish up. Finally, some good news - the only reason I'm not in a rage or breaking down into tears. The picture above is our dossier - every paper and copy is notarized or certified, then legalized by our Sec of State and then by the Peru Consulate.

The process from here?

- Dossier gets translated - finishing when the last 3 docs arrive. Could take 1-2 weeks.
- Dossier gets submitted to SNA - the officials in Peru - and 3 of their departments have to read through all of our paperwork and approve us.
- SNA officially assigns our children to us and sends us an acceptance letter
- We sign and return the acceptance letter
- We file a request for approval of the specific children from USCIS
- A little more paperwork
- Peru gives us a travel date and we're GONE - for 4-6 weeks!

Please pray for things to go quickly - for the kids who are waiting and for our sanity

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Notaries - please sign your name correctly

I heard that notaries can be the one reason documents are returned. For most of our documents, our notary was a wonderful lady from our church. She was so careful in signing each form correctly and making sure the wording was just right. We had 2 other documents that were signed by a notary from the Sheriff's department - as the documents were print-outs of our police background checks.

Well, those documents were rejected by the Secretary of State. Apparently the notary signed the document like a doctor and her signature on file didn't match. This was a huge disappointment - as I had hoped our documents would be going to Peru today. Instead, I'm waiting on this document and we're set back another week, which is an eternity in our world of wait.

...documents, notary, certify, apostille, authenticate...

All words that our in our daily vocabulary - maybe our hourly vocabulary. As we collect more documents for our official 'dossier' (which means the final packet of documents that will be used in Peru for the official assignment of kids and adoption) we have to have a notary for each one. Copies of our passports need a notary to say they are exact, true copies of original documents. Our medical exams and tests had to have a notary. The psychological evaluation (which we suprisingly passed) had to have a notary. The deed to our house, marraige certificates, and birth certificates all had to be certified with the fancy raised seal.

Then, here's what we do with all the notarized, raised seal documents:

FedEx all documents to the Secretary of State in which they were notarized. This office will, now, certify all the documents with their fancy seal. ($2 per page - 25 pages)

When they come back with the fancy seal, we FedEx all the fancy sealed documents to the Consulate of Peru in Denver. This office will authenticate the documents - hopefully they have a fancy seal, too. ($30 per page - 25 pages)

After each government office puts their seal of approval on each piece of paper, we finally can FedEx the documents to Peru - yes, the actual country. In Peru, the documents will be translated and given to MIMDES - the division that approves adoptions. Hopefully within a few weeks of receiving our paperwork, they will officially assign the children to us and we can jump on a plane!

Asking for more info is, apparently, a good thing

We asked everyone we know to pray that USCIS would approve our paperwork sooner than the 3 month expected wait. When we heard about the request for more information, we were worried it would be delayed. WRONG! Our approval form arrived one month and one week after they recieved our paperwork!!! Yes, we did a little dance.