Friday, May 7, 2010

Immigration Hiccups

Oh the joys of immigration departments.

When I got married to Jason I never thought I would be having to be filling out endless immigration forms. But being a foreigner, its inevitable, I know a lot of you will relate. Five years ago, I got my New Zealand residency, after one whole year of waiting, of filling out forms, of money spent (a lot of money by the way). I thought I was free from it, until we decided to head over the ditch.

We, in our naive approach, thought it would be a straight forward process - after all I have been living in New Zealand for the last 8 years. We never bothered to get my New Zealand citizenship papers even though I am entitled to it - you know the drill, pay some money, fill out a form, wait six months, go through a cerimony, and voila, NZ citizen. We never thought it was necessary, until now of course.

I am still under my brazilian passport, which is good for nothing really (sorry folks, but it's true) and if I was to carry on living in New Zealand there would be no issues with it. But when we started to look into going to Australia, the immigration process is quite strict, and having New Zealand residency means nothing to them if you are not a New Zealander (some of my non-kiwi friends may not know that New Zealanders can travel to Australia with no visas, no questions, you can live in Australia if you are a New Zealander) - anyways.

We have quite a good number of friends who travelled to Australia and had a hassle free journey when it came to immigration which was very encouraging.

So after looking into it, it was clear we were going to have to pay the big bucks and apply for my Australian residency through Jason, who is an Australian citizen. Nearly $2500 later, plus hours of filling out forms, gathering documents, printing photos and more documents to prove that our relationship is genuine (as if 8 years of marriage and three kids was not enough proof!) we finally send it to immigration in the beginning of March. All was good.

We rang them a couple of times this month to see how things were going, we know that the only possible issue they would have would probably be my health history (having cancer and all). So we were sort of waiting for a request for me to do more tests. But because we are quite time short, we have been ringing them and we were told my papers had been sent to Australia and they were still waiting to hear back. The wait is awful.

So yesterday I rang the immigration once again and apparently they sent me a letter in the beginning of APRIL requesting more tests. I NEVER got that letter and they NEVER told us they had sent it in the numerous times we rang them last month. UGHHH. So four weeks were wasted in the process. That's not good enough considering Jason leaves in four weeks and we have tickets for the 21st June. So I have an appointment on Tuesday in Wellington to see the immigration doctor so he can refer me for more tests, whatever they will be! That means more money being spent, less money saved.

I can truly say I CANNOT wait until this whole thing is done, there is nothing more tedious and frustrating than going through immigration screenings! But I suppose there is no way around it, so if you can say a little prayer for us, it would be much appreciated!

1 comment:

  1. Yes indeed i will pray and hope you get yours soon. I have had similar experience with my immigration to the US from Kenya. Take heart it will eventually be over.