USA

USA

Philippine Consulates Report of Marriage

Report-of-marriage-LAW

Every filipino citizen who immigrated and got married abroad has to report their marriage in Philippine Consulates within 1 year of the marriage date. If a Filipino citizen fails to report marriage within a year of marriage, an additional document called Affidavit of Delayed Registration is necessary. This is under the Philippines Common Wealth Act 3753, Civil Registry Law.

 

Report-of-marriage-LAW

Why does a filipino citizen needs to report marriage?

A filipino citizen needs to report marriage in order to have an updated record from  National Statistics Office that issues your main document such as birth and certificate of no marriage. If you want to get other identification such as your passport, a documentation has to match with your current identification abroad for different purposes.12053239_952317524814938_137642560_n

What is the purpose of reporting my marriage?

In the United States, it takes 5 years to get a citizenship. A Philippine passport expires after 5 years of issuance. Therefore if you wish to travel abroad while waiting for US citizenship and US passport, you may have to renew your Philippine passport as well. Your passport name should match the name that is issued in your Permanent Residency/Green card to avoid complication when travelling abroad. So, passport information must also be updated and renewed when you receive your green card.

report-of-marriage
report-of-marriage

What are the requirements for report of marriage?

The requirements are report of marriage contracted abroad form, marriage certificate, marriage record, government issued ID and philippine birth certificate. See all the requirements here:

http://www.philippinessanfrancisco.org/philippines-sf/consular-services-sf/faq-sf/#marriage

12071267_952316991481658_1643800109_n

Where can I send my package?

There are 8 consulates where you can send application or submit in person. Every state has a corresponding consulate that will accept your report of marriage package.

If it has been more than a year and you failed to submit your report of Marriage, you have to submit an Affidavit for Delayed Registration.  http://www.philippinessanfrancisco.org/index.php?page=consulate-finder-main

12041705_952317501481607_782186869_n

Click the link below to determine if which consulate is the place for you to file your ROM. Each state are stated under each Consulate address.

http://www.philippinessanfrancisco.org/index.php?page=consulate-finder-main

http://www.philippinessanfrancisco.org/index.php?page=consulate-finder-main

12067768_952320598147964_394380301_n

12071267_952316991481658_1643800109_n12080925_952317514814939_311415734_n

read more
USA

Diary of a foreign spouse.

no thumb

My life has completely changed since I moved to the US.  I was always been flexible and nomadic in the Philippines.  In the US, I have a home and I don’t need to keep moving unless I want to.  I lived in harsh condition with very less to eat but in the US there is literally TOO much food.  In Cebu, I had barely enough money to live on.  I had to live within my means which meant bad living conditions.  The way I was living is called “camping” here in the US.  I usually had no kitchen, no proper place for shower.  The shelter I had to live in was usually infested with rodents and roaches.  My husband thought I was exaggerating until he came and saw what real poverty looks like.  The poverty of developing countries really tests you.  I have always been brave and endured pain of all kinds from a burns to psychological damage.

Falling in love with my husband (boyfriend at the time) gave me hope for a better life, but we had to live apart for almost a year and I always missed him.  He was in the US and I was still in the Philippines.  I felt like he was my home.

Now we are together in the US.  Although my life is way better here, there are some challenges.

Language barrier.  My English is way better now but my husband and I still have some miscommunication.  It is hard.  I am continuously learning the American dialect of English.  There is a lot of slang, accents and words I have never heard until I had to live among native English speakers.  There are english word that have no corresponding translation in my native language.

Food differences.  “Me and my stupid SPAM!”  I am always eating Spam almost everyday. For me, it is a delicacy but my husband said it is NOT a delicacy in the US.  In the Philippines only the middle class and rich can afford Spam.  You either buy it from the imported section at the store or receive it through a package that a family member abroad sent. From my perspective, Americans are very specific and detailed on what they eat because they have so many options.  For example, in the US you can find 20 different types and brands of spread.  In the Philippines, we only have maybe 5 or less than 10 spread for our bread and you may need to go to different stores to find that much variety.  Wow, this place is really paradise for me.  It is spoiling me. I love the variety of food for sure.

Driving here is my biggest nightmare.  Most people drive in the US.  I am learning to drive and I am really not a fan of it.  I am afraid.  I am really afraid because the speed limit is too high. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TzlD-tx8leE

Isolation.  I feel isolated at times. I’m still learning to adjust to this new environment.  It is hard.  I had to start from scratch on everything in my life.

Alienated.  Sometimes I feel alienated because I am not from this place.  There are times when I would see other filipinos but I’m too cautious to befriend them.  Due to my experience in the Philippines, it has pushed me to become more introverted and unfriendly.  When I look around me, it seems like sometimes people stare because it is an unusual thing to see other nationalities.

Modern house equipment.  I think I broke the dishwasher.  Back in ph, we never had a dishwasher so I have no idea how to handle some the modern appliances I have.  I feel disappointed but I tell myself that I am like a little baby here and still earning new things.

Goodwill.  Going to Goodwill/thrift store is fun for me.  In American, people have too much stuff and so they are always giving aways stuff that is practically new to thrift stores and Goodwill.   I shop there occasionally and would find stuff that looks brand new. I shop there for kitchen pots and small items that I cannot find elsewhere.

read more
USA

Non immigrant visa USA for closed-loop cruise

no thumb

During our 3 day cruise from Long Beach, California to Mexico, I was worried that they would not let me on the ship since I am not a US Citizen.  I am a citizen of the Philippines and my status in the US is that of a “nonimmigrant” in the process of getting a permanent residency card.  Right now I have been issued an I 512 parole card.  Months ago, I applied for my permanent resident card but I have not received it yet. The USCIS in Colorado takes almost a year before the applicants can get their permanent resident card.

We called Carnival Cruise customer service and they said they did not have an answer if I can go on a cruise or not.  The next day another Carnival cruise representative called me and asked about the cruise. His name was Emmanuel. I was so thankful that he called me back saying that I can go on the cruise. Our cruise is only 3 days and was a “closed loop”.  A closed loop means it is going back on the same port where it started.  I also presented my passport and my I 512 parole card and I was able to go.

When I returned, border patrol needed to see the same documents to determine my status in the US.

I had been researching the identification needed before we left for the trip. I have read in the cbp https://help.cbp.gov/app/answers/detail/a_id/1139/~/documents-needed-to-take-a-cruise of what kind of identification has to be taken.

read more
USA

Women shopping – USA

women-shopping

I have been here in the United States for almost a year now. I only recently started finding clothes is my style in my size for a decent price.  It took 7 months of online and offline research to find places in town.  One of the biggest challenges was the size difference between North American clothing and the Philippines.  For example, the jeans are longer. Filipinas are shorter and slimmer than the average American woman.  Filipinas are petite by any South East Asian standard but compared to Americans they like preteens.

Another issue was that Philippines clothing is suited for a tropical climate and I moved to a dry climate with four seasons.  All I had were “summer” clothes.  Once I got here I just grab clothes that I could fit even though they were not my style just for the sake of having something warm to wear.   I am only able to wear the Philippines clothes when it is Summer.  In Colorado summer is only 3 months.  Most people just wear pants, a simple shirt and a jacket.  Fashion here is not so defined unlike Los Angeles, California or New York City, NY.

women-shopping-santee-alley

Last April, I discovered that target has teen petite sizes shirts. I just had to look around long enough to see more options for me. One brand I like is called Mossimo. I fit the EXTRA small.  The normal small sizes are quite loose.  For jeans, I also found a Mossimo brand that had a good length and does not look odd when I wear it. I got one pair to test it out. I also found a few shirts from ross which are very low prices and decent quality.

Jeans: $ 27.00women-shopping

For shoes, I had been going to shoe depot. They had good prices branded shoes there. So far I had only been buying shoes in that store. I had to check in payless as well but the styles are too countryside. I had seen nice shoes in Macy’s but at that time I was not ready to spend more than what I thought the prices would be. It is a little off from my expectation. Also, I get bored with the same shoes and only want to keep it for a year or less so its not really ideal for me to buy a very expensive pair of shoes.

Price range: $20.00- $ 60.00

Dr Jays is my new online hub of fashion style. They got okay quality stuff. The design and uniquess is what I like the most. It fits to my dress style. They have really good prices for what you are getting. They also sell brands of affordable clothing like Baby Phat.

Price range: $ 5.00 – $50.00

 

read more
The PhilippinesUSA

Is moving to the united states a dream come true?

moving-to-the-united-states

I am currently living in the US.  Personally it was never my dream to come here, But MANY Filipinos see coming to America as a dream come true.  I have written about some Filipinos who are willing to risk everything to come to the US and many Mexican nationals risk their lives for the opportunity to work menial jobs in the US illegally.

But why? Whats up with being in America? Is it really an awesome place? What is so special about this place that people do not want to go back to their own country?

Now that I am here, I can really see why Filipinos and other foreigners decide to stay here for good.  It is much more peaceful. It is 100% more stable economically.  The environment overall is more stable.  There are less catastrophes and calamities.  The disasters that do happen are prepared for in advanced and usually responded to promptly. Unlike the Philippines where every year promises a disaster that will affect the 30% of the inhabitants because of the dense population in such a compact area.  Typhoons, earthquakes, floods can wipe out many homes due to poor infrastructures and lack of preparation.moving-to-the-united-states

Some Americans would say that  United States of America is not a good place to live but for us Filipinos it is still a paradise and way more peaceful than the Philippines.  I feel safe here. I am not constantly guarding myself.  I do not feel worried as much about being robbed.  Philippines  is overpopulated and the crime rate is very high.  Everyday you can see accidents on the road. The news is always shocking. Like somebody killed on a street that you pass by daily.

middle class home
middle class home

The housing here is 100% better. Houses for sale in the market here are not raw and/or barely habitable.  In America, an old house built in 1970’s that would not be considered a first choice can still look attractive.  The prices are also reasonable for what you are getting. You can also get a good deal and a low interest rate if you have a really good credit score or refinance at the right time.  It is a dream come true for me to know that my husband and I will be able to afford a decent beautiful 3 bedroom house.  This would have been impossible for me to do in the Philippines without a ridiculous amount of money.  Being  middle class in the Philippines does not give you buying power to own a house because there is no credit system that is as thorough and consistent as in the US.

courtesy of snagajob.com
courtesy of snagajob.com

You won’t struggle finding a job. In the Philippines, overpopulation means that many over qualified people are fighting for low paying jobs at fast food places.  The qualifications are getting higher and higher.  For example, a cashier job now in the Philippines requires at least a college degree.  I am not exaggerating.  That is how high the competition is there now. However here in the US, you can get a call center job (which is considered a good job in the Philippines) with a high school diploma.  Or easily get a sales associate job with no job experience.

moving-to-the-united-states

Medical is expensive but modern.  You will not die in of a common illness in the United States.  As a developing country, it is not uncommon to see people dying of diabetes or pneumonia.  Local provincial hospitals often don’t have the resources to treat major trauma, in fact  they don’t even have a decent ER.  In the US, the medical treatment is so advanced that doctors can still save your life even if its so critical because of the technology.  With or without money your life will be saved. America is always evolving new ways to treat a disease.  In the Philippines, you are unlikely to survive without money.  You are more likely to die in the average hospital and the sad part about it is that many families don’t even have enough money to cover the burial expenses.  Many people are so poor and are barely surviving day to day.

Immigrating to America was definitely a smart move. It is way more advantageous. I feel safe here. I am not constantly fighting for my life and food. My brain is not in survival mode anymore.  I am faced with a wealth of choices everyday.  I do not feel trapped or in danger all the time so I feel at peace here. I do not feel the need of protecting myself everyday from all the dangers of an overcrowded, crime infested city where the police are  reluctant to help.  Women have equality and fair justice.  I do not feel scared that I will be harassed with no one to listen.  If anything does go wrong, I know that I have a better chance for justice.

read more
1 7 8 9
Page 9 of 9