Thursday, July 31, 2008

Immigration Update

We met with our attorney a couple of days ago. Folks, trust me on this one: if you can possibly afford it, hiring an attorney to handle all this immigration folderol for you is definitely the way to go.

We are very happy with this guy, he's very much on our wavelength (I mean, how many attorneys do you know that start the conversation by referencing Superman: The Movie and remember Miss Teschmacher and can quote her?!). He basically gave us two options; we could do most of the work ourselves and he'd proofread and answer questions, or the "whole meal deal" as he called it, where we supply the info and he does everything else and we just wait for the card in the mail. :)

Despite the latter option costing about double, compared to US lawyer fees we feel his retainer is reasonable and he's got a very good track record on this, so we went for the whole meal deal. It's his problem now. :)

Admittedly, I don't present as much of a challenge as some people: I'm not a criminal (well until thoughts are outlawed, that is!), I have mad l33t skillz (translation: I'm employable!), I didn't marry Heather for her citizenship, etc.

What the attorney brings to the table is not so much "crossing the t's and dotting the i's" on the various applications/forms (we are quite confident we could do that part well enough, but he'll doubtlessly do it better), but something we cannot come up with on our own: an insider's perspective on how to keep the process moving along in a timely fashion.

My "retirement" has been fun, but at some point I have to work for a living. The immigration process in Canada was slow even under the last government, and under Harper it's gotten noticeably slower. People often wait years for permanent resident status (though getting a work permit doesn't take so long, thank goodness), and without a lot of spare cash and a firm job offer, those wheels turn so slowly that many people are caught in a terrible Catch-22 (they run out of money before they are legally able to work).

We are determined that this will not happen in our case. It will cost us quite a bit up front, but as an investment we think the time we save before I'm able to work will more than pay his fee for us. Hopefully we're right. :)

We'll keep you posted on the process as we go along. In the meantime, starting tomorrow we are going back into the States for a brief visit with some of our LA and Florida and North Carolina friends who have gathered in not-too-far-away Portland, OR for a 50th birthday gathering known as Ron-Kon.

Portland is a very bohemian/hippy/arty/gothy/weird city. We liked it very much last time we were there, so until we have some new pictures to show you we'll just link to our previous Portland gallery. Have a look.

We will most likely update "from the road", so stay tuned!


*Courtney* said...

Stay safe and have fun in Portland. Can't wait to see some more pics when you get back!