Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Letter From the Embassy

Embassy Letter Update

The following is a copy of an email sent to IAN from the embassy in Ethiopia:

Sent: Tuesday, August 23, 2011 3:22 AM
Subject: Issues regarding the adoptions.

Dear Adoption Agencies,

Several issues have arisen over the past few weeks that make it necessary for us to clarify some points with you regarding how we screen documents and schedule interviews with adoptive parents.

We want to stress that we will not expedite cases simply because parents are in country. We screen cases in the order in which they are received and we schedule interview appointments in the order in which the cases are cleared. We recommend that all adoptive parents wait to travel until the Embassy has confirmed a scheduled appointment. We will not fast track any case because adoptive parents chose to travel to Ethiopia without a scheduled appointment.

Our documentary requirements for cases do not change when the parents are in-country. If in the course of screening the documents we determine that we cannot clear the case because of errors or inconsistencies in the file that require further investigation, adoptive parents could find themselves spending significantly more time than expected in Ethiopia.

Families should not book return travel without a confirmed interview date. We will not expedite appointments on this basis.

Please keep the following in mind when communicating with your adoptive parents. We will be sharing the same information:
  • adoption cases will be screened in the order received
  • interviews will not be scheduled until a case has been screened and cleared, including any required corrections
  • Embassy staff require several business days to screen a case
  • corrections may require several days to weeks to complete
  • investigations and/or interviews with birth or relinquishing relatives may take a significant amount of time to complete
  • interview slots are normally available within one week of a case being cleared
  • it takes 48 hours from the time of the interview until we are able to deliver a printed visa.

We respectfully ask you to continue informing your parents of our recommendations regarding travelling for the visa interview.

Esther Bell
Vice Consul
US Embassy
Addis Ababa, Ethiopia

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