Immigration processing delays – causes, effects, and relief


After a night with friends celebrating Manny Pacquiao’s decisive win over Adrien  Broner, I went to bed late only to be awakened early the next morning by a call from a client complaining that his immigration petition for his wife had not been approved after almost a year. He had waited for two years after his marriage in the Philippines before petitioning his wife. I told him that he had waited this long and asked why he could not wait longer. He said he missed his wife and could not wait any more. “Did you visit your wife since you were married?,” I asked. “No”, he replied.

“How long will I have to wait before it is approved?” he asked.

“I do not know.”
“Why don’t you know?,” he asked

“Even God does not know,” I told him.

“Why not? God knows everything.”

“Why don’t you ask God,” I told him.

“I do not go to church.”

“I will go to church today and will ask God,” I said.

At noon, the complaining petitioner called again. “Did you ask God?,” he asked.

“God helps those who help themselves.” I replied.

I told him certain relief available which is discussed below.

[“Many Christians ask God for help, but then expect God to do everything Himself. They excuse this by pointing to the fact that God will provide according to His will and in His timing. However, this is not a reason for inactivity. As a specific example, if you are in need of a job, ask the Lord to help you find a job – but then be active in actually looking for a job. While it is in His power to do so, it is highly unlikely that God will cause employers to come looking for you!”]

According to some people, the quotation “God helps those who help themselves” is not in the Bible. It is attributed to Benjamin Franklin in Poor Richard’s Almanac in 1757. According to these people, the Bible teaches the opposite. “For You have been a defense for the helpless” Isaiah 25:4.]



The Obama administration and the Democrats (or Demoncrats) are believed responsible for immigration processing delays. They want to have more Democratic voters. Birth rates are falling. The alternative is to bring more aliens to come to the United States. They want open borders. The illegal aliens are expected to become so grateful that they will vote Democratic. Many aliens have been voting according to reports. Democrats now control California. Gone are the days of Republican Governors like Arnold Schwarzenegger and Pete Wilson. The Democrats reportedly diverted immigration officers to process DACA and DAPA applications of illegal aliens instead of processing the immigration petitions of citizens and immigrants for eligible relatives and fiancees.

Now the Democrats refuse to enact an appropriations bill to fund the government if President Trump insists on building a wall on the southern border to prevent illegal aliens and illegal drugs from coming to the United States. What happened? There is a partial shutdown of the government. [Do you really care? Has it affected you?]. The Democrats, the pro-Democratic and liberal media blame Trump.

How can Trump be blamed? Congress enacts the laws – including the appropriations law. The House of Representatives has not enacted an appropriations law. The President executes the laws. What can Trump execute if there is no law to execute? Trump cannot shut down the government. It is partially shut down because there is no appropriation for the salaries of non-essential personnel. [If these personnel are non-essential, why are they employed at all? Why are we spending hard-earned tax money to pay for “non-essentials”?]



In the immigration field, the effects of immigration processing delays can be significant. The wife left behind abroad could meet another man and have an affair with him. In one case, a man had petitioned for his wife. When the wife arrived she was pregnant. The man had not seen his wife for more than two years. He knew how to count and was certain the child his wife was carrying could not be his. He wanted to have his wife deported. But the wife had a permanent resident card. It would be difficult to deport her. She is not a priority job for Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

In another case, an alien beneficiary of an immigration petition arrived excited to meet his wife who had petitioned for him. His wife did not meet him at the airport. His relatives who met him said that she had a problem and could not meet him. He was finally told that his wife had given birth to a child by another man and was now living with him. The alien hired a Caucasian immigration lawyer whom you sometimes see on television. The alien was placed in removal proceedings because he did not file a petition to remove conditions on residence before the 2-year period of his conditional residency expired. The Caucasian lawyer could not do anything. He did not even return the money paid to him. The alien came to us. We saved him from deportation and got him a green card and citizenship. He is now happily married.

Due to processing delays, if the petitioner dies before the beneficiary’s petition is approved, the petition dies with him. If the petitioner dies after the petition is approved, it is difficult if not impossible to get humanitarian reinstatement. See my article “Humanitarian reinstatement of dead petitioner’s petition – is it a farce?” It is in my son Noel’s website.



  1. Ask the Demoncrats to enact an appropriations bill to provide funds for the government including $ 5.7 billion for the border wall. This will not benefit Trump. It will benefit you. Immigration adjudicators will return to work to process your petition.
  2. Write your U.S. representative and senator to follow up your petition. Attach a copy of the receipt showing that USCIS received your petition.
  3. Tell USCIS that you will file a mandamus petition to compel USCIS to act on your petition. You must be prepared to carry it out otherwise if you are just bluffing and you do not file the petition forthwith they will ignore you. I have done this and it works. If your lawyer bluffs and does not carry it out, immigration authorities will not believe him anymore. Remember the boy who cried wolf.

Meanwhile, visit your wife who is abroad otherwise if she is attractive she might meet a glib tongued playboy who will crow “cock a doddle doo” and you will become a cuckold.

(Atty. Tipon has a Master of Laws degree from Yale Law School and a Bachelor of Laws degree from the University of the Philippines. His current practice focuses on immigration law and appellate criminal defense. He writes law books for the world’s largest law book publishing company and writes legal articles for newspapers. Listen to The Tipon Report which he co-hosts with son Noel, the senior partner of the Bilecki & Tipon Law Firm. It is the most witty, interesting, and useful radio program in Hawaii. KNDI 1270 AM band every Thursday at 7:30 a.m.  Atty. Tipon served as a U.S. Immigration Officer. He co-authored the best-seller “Immigration Law Service, 1st ed.,” an 8-volume practice guide for immigration officers and lawyers. Atty. Tipon has personally experienced the entire immigration process. He first came to the United States on a student/ exchange visitor visa to study at Yale. He returned to the Philippines to resume practicing law. He came again to the United States on a non-immigrant work visa to write law books, adjusted his status to that of a lawful permanent resident, and became a naturalized citizen. Atty. Tipon was born in Laoag City, Philippines. Tel. (808) 800-7856. Cell Phone (808) 225-2645.  E-Mail: [email protected] Websites: , , This article is a general overview of the subject matter discussed and is not intended as legal advice. No attorney-client relationship is established between the writer and readers relying upon the contents of this article.)

What’s Up Atty 2019 01 20 Immigration processing delays