I spent a week with my fiancée in Manila and met Ryan in the same place just before I boarded my flight back to the US. We were looking for someone who could process our K-1 visa, that is the reason I contacted him. There were no children or related issues involved in our case, so it was a rather easy one. He quoted a price of $2000 as fees. This price was really expensive for me but he added up saying that his services were exceptional, so the price is justified. He was friendly and had a positive impression so I decided to retain him. Our DS-160 and the initial submission was put together with his help. His recommendation was for us to write our story. He said he will submit the documentation after we get done with the story writing. Till this time, everything was going fine and as per schedule. The moment my fiancée’s case was marked ready and sent to Manila, that is when the problems began. I asked him to set up the interview. He asked me to wait for a week in return, saying that it should get in their system first. I thought of calling USCIS. They told me that it could have been scheduled online as and when it showed up with the “ready” status. On learning this, I called him up and asked him to set up an interview by calling at the embassy. He then did the same. It bothered me that he didn’t know about the online interview scheduling system. In fact, even after I called him up to schedule the interview, he took 2 more days to do the same. Now that the interview was set, she took a flight to Manila to go through the medical examination and appear for the interview. Her medical tests went fine.
She failed at the interview and we were told that our case has been put under 221(g) owing to the lack of chat logs and proof of remittances. We did not understand what 221(g) meant and since we did not have a clue about this, we were bound to be stressed. At this point, Ryan started to abandon us. He did not explain to me the process involved with 221(g) and instead asked me to contact my senator. This was it. He left us alone to handle the case as per my own understanding and sources. When I researched about it, I discovered that chat logs and evidence of remittance is status quo for this interview process. Every individual who is well informed about the process, submits these either with the initial application or carry them along while appearing for the interview. Now since this person failed to inform us about the entire process and proceeding and that we needed these things, it was obvious that she would fail in the interview. In the next few days, I put together around 500 pages of material and we drafted that to the embassy overnight.
Another huge mistake Ryan made was that he did not inform or ask us to register for the CFO class beforehand. My fiancée was living on another island which was quite far from Manila and we should have registered a week or two before through the online process. We somehow managed to get her into a class during the short time span while she was in Manila, but it was purely luck, I would say. On confronting Ryan, I questioned him as to why did he not inform us about the CFO requirements, he misguided us again saying that it was not supposed to be a part of our arrangement. This was not the correct information though. CFO class is mandatory for a K-1 fiancée to fly and come to the US.
So both of these issues, the 221(g) and CFO class information not being furnished to us and the way he handled things in our case brought a huge red flag up. The worse happened when Ryan maintained no communication for around 3 weeks after that. Somewhere around the start of November month, he sent an idiotic mail stating that he intended to inform us about the fact that our case has “ready” status now, so they are processing it, it seems. The fact remains that our case had been in the “ready” status even before she went for the interview. My fear stood true after seeing all this that this person had no clue of what he was talking about. I again sent him a message asking about why he never cared to inform us about the requirement of the chat logs and remittance. He conveniently stayed mum and never replied to this question.
We were clearly pissed with his services and informed him that we did not need his assistance any further and that we have decided not to pay him the remaining amount of $500. The entire fee amount was $2000 and we had paid him $1500 out of that already. He threatened us by saying that he would take a strict legal action against us and that he would reveal quite graphic and intimate details about us in the court proceedings. Imagine the level to which he had stooped!
My fiancée got her Visa issued after we submitted the missing materials stated under 221(g). This clearly proves that she could have easily passed at her interview if we would have furnished these materials before and a lot of effort and time could have been saved.
Based on the experience that I have had with him, I would certainly not recommend him. His fee charges are exorbitantly high where he doesn’t work to be worthy of even half the amount. He is incompetent and becomes cold and arrogant if you point out his mistakes. If you hire Ryan Barshop to process K-1 visa, you expose yourself to high risk in the process!