I was asked to move this post here. It concerns my visit to the U.S. Consulate in Halifax to inform them that my wife and I had relinquished in 1973.
I posted this to the forum yesterday:
Just got home from Halifax and our visit to the U.S. Consulate. Not sure what I expected but it was fairly painless with a couple of unexpected twists.
First of all the consulate is a tiny suite of offices in an office tower. You get buzzed in by the receptionist/telephone operator/security guard. That gets you into a very small space where you have to put all metal objects (including your belt) into an equally small tray and then step through the metal detector. Then you step into a room the size of a large bedroom with about twenty plastic chairs screwed to the floor and you sit. This waiting room is also the interview room – there are wickets around one side (nobody at them at all – staff or clients.)
My appointment was for 9:30 and I arrived at 9:00 and they took me at 9:05. I spoke to a clerk who asked the purpose of my appointment and I said I wanted to inform them that I had expatriated in 1973. She was having none of that. She said she didn’t mean to imply that I was lying but they had a lot of people recently claiming this(!) so I had to have all the forms filled out as though I were relinquishing today. I thought this might be the case so I had already filled out these forms. She then asked if the other person coming in this morning was my wife. I said it was and she told me to go get her and they’d process both of us at the same time. Her appointment was for 11:00 so this was good news for us.
I got my wife and returned. The same clerk asked us for documentation. She seemed to think I should have a form signed at my citizenship ceremony renouncing US citizenship. Not sure if I did that or not but her suggestion to apply for copies under Access of Information and make another appointment was not what I wanted and I looked quite distressed and told her I wasn’t coming back. Back to filling out forms as though relinquishing today.
She asked us for birth certificates, marriage certificate, driver’s licenses, citizenship certificates, landed immigrant cards, passports *and* any old passports we had to show how often we’d traveled into the U.S.!! I explained that we had only used passports in the past couple of years to enter the U.S. and that no border official in the U.S. had ever stamped our passports. I further explained that I didn’t get old copies of passports when I renewed. She was astounded at that news.
She also strongly recommended that we write up a page of “Why we relinquished” as mentioned at the bottom of 4081.
Reading this it makes her sound a lot worse than she was. Actually she was very polite and co-operative. I think she was just a bit stressed by the numbers relinquishing recently in Halifax.
In any case she took all the paperwork and said that normally there is a second appointment necessary but she would type everything up and we could get it all done today. Then she told us to go away for an hour and she would get it done up.
While we waited (eating breakfast) we wrote up the page she had urged as per 4081.
Returning an hour later we were told to wait for a consular official. This time it was a young man who started with: “This should be painless and very quick.” He went through the forms and we signed in front of him. He told us it was good to relinquish as opposed to renouncing because it was free and we agreed that was good. We asked about copies and as others have said were told it is policy not to give copies. We asked about wait time to get a CLN and he said that it used to be about a year but there had been so many recently that they were processing them more quickly(!) He said between 2 months and a year. I’m hoping for the 2 months but expecting closer to the year.
Left the office about 11:30 and drove back to N.B.
Overall, as I said, painless and cooperative. Now if they’ll just date it 1973.