The president of Peru has declared 2017 El año de buen servicio al ciudadano. That means, the year of good service to the citizens.
With my Interpol document in hand (see Becoming Peruvian Part 1), along with several other documents, we celebrated Thanksgiving by applying for citizenship. To make life easier, Migraciones Peru publishes a document on its website listing the documents that you will need in order to apply for citizenship. As a matter of fact, they publish two lists, two different lists. They also do not answer their phones. We decided to go with the easier list knowing that public services in Peru are trying to make things easier. It is, after all, the year of good service.
We arrived at Migraciones at 10:45 AM ready for our 11:00 appointment; the taxi ride there took about 45 minutes. They received our documents at about 11:15 and called me in at about 11:35; Ana Maria could not come in, yet. In a cramped office with three desks, an office that also acts as a passageway to additional offices, I met with a kind woman who took her work seriously. At the desk next to us another woman sang along with her headphones; she quieted down when we began talking.
One by one the official went through the documents. Thankfully we had used the correct list. By the end of our meeting Ana Maria was called in and a few changes were necessary:
- Three of the documents had to be rewritten, she gave me blank copies;
- I had to talk to the officials downstairs to find out why, according to my entries and departures list from Migraciones Peru, my first entry into Peru was in 2009 but we were married here in 2000 (remember, we are in the office of Migraciones);
- Ana Maria’s official birth certificate from Mollendo, Peru had to be certified as real in Peru;
- My marriage certificate had a second last name, my mother’s maiden name, but that name did not appear on any other document, so I have to prove that I am the same person in all of the documents and that my mom is my mom- rest in peace, mom.
Conversation ended, I went downstairs to figure out how I could make corrections to my official entries and departures list. (While I did that, Ana Maria officially cancelled the appointment we just had so we did not lose the money we paid for the appointment- it was nice we could do that.) Turns out Migraciones had three different names for me: with and without my middle name, with and without my mom’s maiden name, and with an additional last name of Ley. Who knew? We performed the necessary paperwork to join all three records together. Now my first entry into Peru is listed as 1996. At least I think it has been changed- they would not show me the change on the computer screen. By the way, I still have no personal documents with my mom’s maiden name.
The part about certifying Ana Maria’s official certificate requires no comment. What could I possibly add to certifying an official certificate? It only requires 10 working days and a return trip to RENIEC.
As for the marriage license, back in 2000 when we married, the official filling out the paperwork for the marriage license insisted in putting a second last name. Both Ana Maria and I protested because I have no document that has my mom’s maiden name. The official really insisted and added the name from my birth certificate. Now we have to request the original paperwork from the town where the civil ceremony was held… which is easier than requesting a birth certificate from Minnesota.
If all of this takes longer than a month I will have to begin again at INTERPOL because that document is about to expire. I think our official copy of the marriage certificate already expired; it’s only valid for one month.
A big thanks to Ana Maria who has done most of the work to get me citizenship! Happy Thanksgiving!!
The president of Peru has declared 2017 El año de buen servicio al ciudadano. That means, the year of good service to the citizens. What might a year of bad service look like?
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