First of all, we should be getting an update about Bertie including new pictures this month! Woohooo! Moving right into the “where we’re at” part.
Right now, things are pretty quiet. We’re in the “quiet place” where we won’t get a lot of updates unless it’s bad news about a delay.
I just spoke with our coordinator at USCIS/NBC (national Benefits Center – this is where the adoption paperwork gets processed). Our file left the Department of Homeland Security on March 27th and just got to the NBC office on April 7th.
We found out it’s been sitting there for a week. We currently do not have an officer assigned to our case. It could be another 2-3 weeks before that happens.
Once we get an officer assigned to our case, we’ll get a letter telling us the ball is now rolling. They will review our I600 paperwork to make sure they do not need an RAE (Request for Additional Evidence). We were told that 88% of cases need additional evidence so not to be concerned. However, this will delay our file getting sent to Addis Ababa, Ethiopia for “investigation”.
Once they [finally] have everything they need, they will send our file to Addis Ababa, ET where they will take 6-12 weeks to do their investigations. Once they have all the information they need to confirm Bertie is in fact eligible for adoption, they’ll send it back here and USCIS/NBC will issue our PAIR letter. The actually issuance of the letter will only take a few days.
Once we have the PAIR letter, we will be given a court date. Those are normally 4-6 weeks out.
At this point, we could travel at the end of June if we get an officer assigned to our case in the next week or so and if our case does not need any further evidence. Otherwise, we’re looking at some time in July.
KC and I are fine with that as long as long as we get our court date before the courts close for about 2 ½ months for the rainy season. The courts close in August until the beginning of October. As long as we take our court trip before they close, we can travel during the rainy season for our embassy trip and bring her home. We’re DEFINITELY praying we get our letter and court date before August! :))
Thank you all for your prayers, please don’t stop. The end is in sight, but it’s been a harder fight these last 2 months than I could have imagined. We are continuing to trust 100% in God. I’m not dwelling on the news we got today, but am instead holding on to the promise He has given us.
Bertie is ours. She will be home soon. God has done some amazing things for us and I know He is still fighting for us. I’m praising Him for the victory and instead of thinking of the negative, I’m remembering what He’s brought us through.
I am guarding my mind against the lies the enemy tries to whisper in my ear. KC and I are still fighting for our little girl. And no amount of interference from the enemy is going to stop us. We are battling on!
12 For we are not fighting against flesh-and-blood enemies, but against evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against mighty powers in this dark world, and against evil spirits in the heavenly places.
18 Pray in the Spirit at all times and on every occasion. Stay alert and be persistent in your prayers for all believers everywhere
~Ephesians 6:12 & 18