My Experience with Guangzhou-China’s U.S. Embassy

I have years of experience working with United States Embassies and Consulates all over the world through my immigration law office located in Los Angeles, California. In my opinion, Guangzhou, China is the worst consular post in the world. The U.S. Embassy in Guangzhou is very overworked and handles about 1/5 of the world’s population trying to immigration to the United States. It is absurd to me that the Department of State continues this Embassy in this state of condition.

The U.S. Embassy in Guangzhou is so busy that they do not have any time to read cases or engage in any form of communication outside of the interview process with the prospective immigrant. They have been known to make very unreasonable decisions and are very unpredictable and read to comprehend. As they are unable to review their cases prior to the interview, no one is safe and it is always a gamble.

One of the worst stories I have heard of a client was a case in which this Chinese woman married a U.S. Armed Forces member where he was unable to show up for the interview as he was fighting for the U.S. in Afghanistan. The entire interview was conducted in Chinese and at the end of the interview the interviewing officer asked her one question in English. Client did not hear the officer correctly and asked “what?” and without the officer repeating the question, he handed her a 221(g) sheet questioning the validity of their marriage, suspecting her of marriage fraud, because she didn’t speak English well enough to date an American man, in his opinion.

Denial rates are extremely high at this Embassy. There seems to be an ongoing trend with these officers that if they accuse the applicants of fraud, the fake ones will go away while the legitimate relationships will continue to fight. However, it also appears that they seem to adjudicate more favorably in cases in which non-Chinese marry Chinese. They are also very skeptical that any American can learn Mandarin well enough to have a relationship with someone who doesn’t speak English well, even if the American petitioner lives and works in mainland-China.

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