People are still struggling to understand the processing method at KCC for DV2022. So I am going to capture some notes and explain from what I know or can assume, what I think has been going on.
Firstly, to help the understanding, I want to explain =DQ status. I used to refer to DQ as “ready for scheduling” or RFS. The government uses the term, and it’s important to understand that no case can be scheduled until it is RFS. A case might not be current yet, but it could be RFS. Internally, KCC uses some status codes for RFS, DOCQ/DOCC (Documentarily QUALIFIED, or Documentarily COMPLETE). Now, some people misunderstand that being documentarily qualified/complete is to do with the document procedure that was removed in the pilot program. But in reality it is simply a status, and you should not confuse the word “documentarily” with the documents. The status simply means that the applicant has completed WHATEVER steps they need to have completed (DOCQ) and that KCC have finished their checks (DOCC).
Now, Miles Morgan (the person running KCC) has recently stated that cases are being scheduled in strict case number order. However, there are many people who can tell you that from their experience that does not appear to be true because their case has been “skipped” at least for a while.
The statements by MM does NOT mean that cases are processed according to strict case number order. The process (both before Dec 9 and after) gives an advantage to CN. It always has and it was supposed to work that way. Pre Dec 9, I explained that the DSs were opened and (to some extent) processed in order of submission. Some people misheard that and still to this day will swear that I have said that cases are scheduled in DS date order. I have literally never said that, but people don’t listen. Pre Dec 9, cases were opened in DS submission date order but some cases would take longer to process than others. So – opening does not mean finishing processing the DS and it most certainly never meant anything about DS date reserving a place in a line/queue. IT NEVER DID.
Now – pre Dec 9, case numbers offered some benefit of processing because the documents submission inbox was ordered in Alphanumeric order based on the subject line. That understanding might become important for DV2023 cases. That gave preference to lower case numbers. However, there were cases that got all the way through DS and doc processing even at high case numbers because they made it through when there were no backlogs (mostly very early on). To understand the backlog, just think of an email inbox with a certain number of emails, all sorted in case number order. New emails arrive each day, but on some days the staff were able to empty the email inbox (i.e. no backlog) and on those days they could have processed any case number. On other days however, the inbox would have so many emails that it could not be emptied in one day, leaving some higher cases in the inbox until the following day. Then as more emails are arriving, they are taking their place in line based on case number order – and of course some cases kept getting pushed down in the backlog order. Some people made that situation worse for themselves by incorrectly using the subject line.
Then Dec 9 the pilot program was introduced. The government announced that documents were no longer needed. Of course they didn’t ever explain how all of their processes had been changed, so we have to try and figure it out based on what evidence we get. There is always going to be a bit of time where no one really understands what is happening, and of course everyone had a theory, but no one really knew. Some people for sure guessed parts of it correctly, but not other parts so every time anyone said they were fully sure of the new method, there was always someone else who was able to give evidence of that theory not being correct.
Between Dec 9 and early January there was a short period of chaos when some wacky stuff happened. They even scheduled some interviews for cases that were not even current. But by early/mid January they seemed to get control of the processing to some extent and several people started noticing different behavior at “some” embassies. Jesse and I discussed these things in some February live sessions. It wasn’t entirely clear what was going on because of course there was a mix of situations where some people had been DQd under the old system, and some presumably became DQ under the new system (remember, DQ/RFS is a status). There were some cases with high CNs that were being scheduled, but that was either cases processed pre Dec 9 OR cases processed after Dec 9 but at quiet embassies. So in February it was becoming clear that there was some difference in processing by different embassies. We would find out weeks later that KCC had indeed established different queues for each embassy, and that meant that cases had to be “opened” and placed in a queue for each embassy. This was done in order to take advantage of the available capacity at some embassies – and that part of the pilot program achieve it’s goal.
Now, that processing method seems to have allowed KCC to focus its efforts on embassies that could take additional cases. We know from court filings that KCC is maintaining an ordered list per embassy based on case number, by that place number is only assigned when the case is allocated to the embassy (AV status at KCC, which I think stands for Allocated Visa). It is at this point that the email would be received that says “current for interview processing”). So – processing is not strictly by case number although case number will help, and of course the earlier submission will help but again is not strictly the position in the queue. And the position in the queue is only assigned when the case becomes AV, and in theory new cases becoming AV would take their case number position in the queue. KCC have repeatedly said they will continue to process cases. However, we are not certain what makes them take an RFS case and allocate it to an embassy (AV), especially if that embassy already has more cases than it can handle. So – although it “sounds like” case number should be a no brainer in terms of expecting an interview, it is not. Because there are some cases with lower case numbers that are not being processed, or processed but not allocated. Again, it is only allocated cases that have an ordered place in the queue. We also know from filings that some embassies have many more cases allocated than their monthly capacity. So – unless their capacity increases, being allocated does not guarantee an interview. Some people have been receiving “current for interview processing” responses for months, but no 2NL. That is simply a factor of CN ordering within the AV queue.
Now where do we know this stuff from – well we got a most of this information from court documents in the Tesfaye case, and the findings and assumptions have been confirmed in other more recent lawsuit activity. April filings showed the following:
First a page that shows the cases status codes, and showing that AV cases are ordered according to case number. We can see that at the time this document was produced there were 452 cases in the queue at Addis and 448 in the queue for Khartoum, and we can see the order is based on only AV cases, and in case number order. So – if they continue to add to that number by making cases AV, the position in the list would change, regardless of the DS submission date (shown) or the date the case got inserted to the queue at AV. BUT they can choose when to move cases to AV status. That last point is critical to understand, because that is (I believe) based on RFS date because otherwise there would be no status of DOCC. So – you can receive an emai of “DS processed” but that does not mean allocated (AV status).
Next, we can see two other screenshots that show how capacity is reported and managed. The screenshots below show the interview availability up to May of Khartoum and Addis. This shows that each embassy is able to report its capacity on a monthly basis. KCC then schedule the cases based on the AV order from above. Sadly, for Addis and Khartoum we can see that AV cases already massively exceed the monthly capacity, so unless capacity were increased, those queues will never be emptied before the end of the year.
So – if you are allocated to an embassy with a large queue (larger than their available capacity) then you are not getting the 2NL. Even if your case is AV, but your case number is high, and there are lower cases in front of you, then you will be stuck in the frustrating limbo situation and that could carry on month to month.
Now imagine an embassy you are allocated to that is reporting they have capacity for 50 cases, and the AV queue for that embassy only has 30 cases waiting. In that case every case would be scheduled regardless of the case number, and KCC staff would even actively process additional no AV cases through the system in order to take advantage of that spare capacity. That is precisely what we have been seeing. So – hopefully you can see the reason for the difference between people’s experience at embassies.
Now, there are some embassies that have simply refused to take cases at all (such as Sydney). The experience for people at those embassies has been very frustrating. There are other embassies that have taken far few cases than we would normally have expected (Cairo, Kathmandu, Accra are all examples). They have used their “discretion” to simply de-prioritize DV cases in favor of other visa types. Outrageous behavior in my opinion, but they appear to be unmoved by the lawsuits, the social media campaigns and so on. Then there are some embassies who have done quite well and have taken alot more cases than they would normally have taken, probably taking overflow from neighboring countries. We can look at Morocco, DRC as AF region examples, and of course Warsaw and Frankfurt have stepped up because if the war in Ukraine (slava Ukraini, fuck Putin). Suva embassy for offered a lifeline to Australian based applicants. This move was probably prompted by a lawsuit filed by Jesse Bless, but whatever the reason it was appreciated. Then there are some embassies that just put DV applicants first and have found a way to schedule cases and those embassies are much appreciated, but even those embassies have some capacity limit.
By using the available capacity at any willing embassy, KCC have managed to schedule a high number of cases, and in a sense have “saved” the year from wasting too many visas. They have been so successful, that we will now probably see close to the quota being issued – something in the 45 to 50k visas. In that scenario it is difficult to see how large group cases can argue successfully. Individual mandamus cases might be successful, but KCC will be able to stand by their methods, particularly if it “works” from the point of view of issuing enough visas. And remember, they are not looking at things from an individual case point of view , or even by country. They are simply trying to fill the global and regional quotas.
Now this is all in regard to DV2022. It is not certain how DV2023 is going to be run at this point, and we are not even certain whether the document procedure will be back. But I will try to do my best to inform people with the best information I can gather.
Best of luck to everyone.