Friday, May 15, 2009

Kai & Tamara & Secretary(ies) of State

What an amazing week. *doing Friday happy dance*

We are now, more than ever, in the mix. Our individual home study interviews are complete, as are our couples interview and home review. While that was happening, the main office in Texas was moving our file on to our third (and final) caseworker! This is the caseworker who will guide us through our dossier submission (our next step) up until we're ready for our travel plans to Ethiopia. (still a l.o.n.g. way away; update on wait times will be a topic very soon)

The next step is a bit mind-boggling but I'll do my best to be clear.
Remember all the paperwork we gathered during our paperchase phase? All of that is now sent to our caseworker to confirm it's all in order for dossier preparations. (note: I already have to re-do our passport photocopies & have them notarized again b/c I did a b&w photocopy, not color. We're doing that tomorrow.)

Once all is fine on her end, Kai & I will be "authenticating" each document in order to complete our dossier.

"Authenticating" in this world is as follows: each document must be signed off by the Secretary of State in the state of which the act represented by the document occurred. Ex: We got married in Vegas. Our marriage certificate will now be sent to the Secretary of State of Nevada to be reviewed, stamped, approved as legal and returned to us. Not until then is it dossier-ready.

Once all documents are signed off by their corresponding Secretaries of State, they are returned to us and then the entire package (dossier) is submitted to both the US Embassy and the Ethiopian Embassy for review. This applies to EACH document.

Documents submitted today for dossier review

our written statement (why we want to adopt and why from Ethiopia)
certified birth certs
certified marriage certs
fbi clearance letters with fbi fingerprints
employment letter for each
proof of life insurance for both parents
proof of health insurance for both parents
bank letter
medical certs for both parents
3 reference letters

Completing over weekend to submit Monday

notarized financial statement
notarized, color copies of passports
2 official passport photos
family photographs

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