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I am a single, young Iranian applicant for Schengen Visa at German Embassy. I have a friend in Germany who is married, female and older than me. We established a strong friendship and she sent me a Verpflichtungserklärung (VPE) for visiting her and Germany for 2 weeks long. So I prepared all documents regarding Schengen Visa, like employment certificate, bank accounts, travel insurance, VPE, filled in application forms, recent bio-metric photos and etc.

At the first interview, the officer (who was also Iranian), took the documents and asked few questions. She made it sound weird that we only met on the internet. But, I explained her that she helps me learning German and we are good friends form 2 years ago. Anyhow she took all the docs and said, the decision result for your case will be sent in 2 weeks.

After a week they called me and said I am invited for another interview at the embassy by consul. I went there and this time, there was a German guy who was asking questions. Perhaps he was the decision maker.

First, he asked "What is your purpose of visiting Germany?" I explain my knowledge about their culture, foods and how I am fascinated about visiting there. Moreover, I explained about my friendship with my friend. Then he said she is much older than you. I told him that she is married, the age is not matter in friendship and ... . Then he made it a big deal that we only met on internet and not in person. I explain him, about the opportunities that technologies provide to us, the living creature of 21 century. Then he passed it and asked, What is your job exactly and I answered. Then he said at 2 PM (in 5 hours) you can get your passport and the result.

Unfortunately, I got a rejection letter attached to my passport at 2 PM. The items with circles around them, were the reasons of my visa refusal.

Your intention emigrate visa from the territory of the Member States, before the end, could not be found, because:

1) The documents submitted by them do not allow positive conclusions on the presence of a secure livelihood in Iran

2) They have not proven your economic bond in Iran with the documents in courts.

It means, 1) my salary is not enough in Iran, so I may stay there for a living. Also 2) I don't have anything economical to force me coming back to Iran, like owning a home, documented property or a lease.

In the second interview, the German guy didn't ask about these things. He asked about the aim of my visit, why is she older than me, how is her family, how did you met, was it in person or on internet, how long do you know her. I answered to all of his questions with confidence in detail and explained every bit of his concerns. So he couldn't select (circle) the other items for my visa rejection like :

Their acquaintance is not clear, the aim of visit is not clear, there are ambiguities in oral interview about his aim of visit, his plans for staying and their acquaintance.

So I think there are 2 possibilities and I am really wonder which is true?

1) He was not very happy that we were only internet friends (as I felt it in the interview), but my answers were so strong and clear, so he couldn't use those reasons to reject me. Thus he used those vague economical reasons to refuse my visa request.

2) He knew that he has to reject me for at least the given economical matters, but he was unsure if there are more reasons, like the ones he asked in the second interview, to reject me. Thus, I could know all my weakness in my application case for future correction. Anyhow, he found out, the only problem that I have to fix for future is my economic bond and salary.

I had about 8,000 EU deposit in my back account which was sufficient for a visit. I have an official job (teacher), which is not very well paid here, (about 400 EU/month), 30,000 EU traveling insurance.

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    If you believe that the consulate did not consider your evidence correctly, consider filing a letter of remonstrance. – Michael Hampton Jul 18 '16 at 1:33
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    Generally speaking a single man visiting a virtual friend (of opposite sex) is considered suspicious, especially considering that you have about as many reasons to stay in Germany as you do to return, so they error on the side of caution. – Karlson Jul 18 '16 at 3:51
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    EUR 8000 deposit on a EUR 400 salary That would also make the visa officer suspicious. I don't have anything economical to force me coming back to Iran, like owning a Home, Document property، Lease. This would be deal breaker if you cannot convince the visa officer that you have ties to your country. – DumbCoder Jul 18 '16 at 7:56
  • I made it like a family thing by noting that her son who is about my age plans to play football with me. Also I mentioned some other things that I have in common with her sons and we talk about it. Also I mentioned she is married. So how on earth the visa officer can be suspicious about having a plan behind bushes? <Thanks for the comment> @Karlson – Masan Jul 18 '16 at 8:50
  • Well I have a state job! I am a teacher. okay, not well paid but Do I have to own a home property for a simple holiday visit? <Thanks for answer> @DumbCoder – Masan Jul 18 '16 at 8:52
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You met a woman on the net and she offered to sponsor you for a Schengen. She has children either older than you or in the same age range as you. This aspect of your sponsorship was probed during two interviews at the German consulate. You explained the premise of your visit was a family meeting in order to play football with her children. You are employed as a teacher. You did not include anything in your question about your proficiency in the German language. You were ultimately refused on economic grounds and are disappointed at this result.

So I think there are 2 possibilities and I am really wonder which is true?

You want to know if the consular officer used the discrepancy method to refuse your application and you are inviting us to help reveal the 'hidden' reason.

It is likely that the consular officer had an array of reasons he could select as grounds for your refusal...

  • Your economic circumstances;
  • Disproportionate expenditure;
  • Lack of viable premise; or
  • Relationship with sponsor.

Based upon what you wrote, any of these reasons can be a relevant show-stopper. The grounds he selected were...

Your intention emigrate visa from the territory of the Member States, before the end, could not be found, because:

1) The documents submitted by them do not allow positive conclusions on the Presence of a secure livelihood in Iran

2) They have not proven your economic bond in Iran with the documents in courts.

So they opted to refuse on economic grounds and your ties to Iran. Your next question is implicitly stated...

If I cleared the first interview. Why did they call me back for a second interview if they were not satisfied with the result?

Your first interview was conducted by a local hire, an assistant. She was 'minded to refuse' and reported her conclusions. Normally it would stop right there but the consular officer re-examined your application and decided there was scope to possibly overrule the assistant and grant you the visa. So you got called in again for an interview with a Vice Consul, a decision-maker.

This interview started from square 1, the officer essentially discarded the first interview and started fresh. So your assumption that the first interview cleared certain points from the criteria is wrong; the proceedings are not connected and do not naturally follow one-to-the-next.

According to what you wrote, you gave strong and tenable answers that could not possibly lead to a refusal, but this was the result anyway. It's likely that your economic ties were questionable along with a questionable premise...

Genuine visitors do not normally visit Germany to play 
football with the children of someone they met on the net.  

And they will question the authenticity of sponsorship 
when correspondence on the net constitutes 
the entire relationship.

And not having a common language with your sponsor 
invites big-time credibility problems.

You can invite your sponsor and her children to Iran for some football and this will help lend credibility to your application, but your economic circumstances are still a formidable hurdle.

Summary: I don't think the discrepancy method was used in your case. The officer had several grounds to select from and selected the most obvious. The fact that you had a second interview was something in your favour, but your performance in the second interview did not carry the application.

Significantly, the officer asked you to speak some German, this was likely the final nail.

Note: we are not the Tribunal or the Appeals Board. Maybe they were right or maybe they were wrong, it's still a refusal. It's understood you are disappointed, but all we can do is reflect on what you have provided. Comments on your question have provided links to various protests that might be available to you.

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    This answer is really good, Thanks. I should mention that, I also told the officer, she helps me with German language as we met on a language learning website, then he asked me to speak a little German and I did. It was just a bit, also it was not only playing football. I mentioned I would like to visit the historic sites, the natural landscape and try German food. Also, I named few kind of breads that he recognized it too. Is there anything you like to modify in your answer with these missed facts? @GayotFow – Masan Jul 18 '16 at 15:05
  • ... Also, for the next time, is it okay if I just meet her in some other visa free countries and show the German Visa officer some photos that we were together? Or do I really have to invite her kids in Iran too @GayotFow – Masan Jul 18 '16 at 15:05
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    @Jamaisavenir I made some changes. The answer now must stand 'as is'. You have received some really great answers from several users. I have read them and think all are valuable, especially 'Henrik's', please read stackoverflow.com/help/someone-answers – Gayot Fow Jul 18 '16 at 15:28
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He probably assumed that you were trying to immigrate there; you would go, and never come back - this is why he asked "What is your purpose of visiting Germany".

It is clear from the rejection reasons that according to your application, you did not submit sufficient evidence of ties to Iran which convinced the officer that you intended to return back after your visit.

So if he wanted to reject me for insufficient ties to Iran, why did he invited me for second interview and asked about why is she older than me, how is her family, how did you met , was it in person or on internet, how long do you know he?!!

These are questions asked since it was not clear what is your relationship with this person.

In my opinion, once you told the officer about the true nature of your relationship; it further enforced the idea that you had no legitimate reason to come back, since you have no significant ties to Iran, and the premise of your trip (the reason for your request for visa) is simply to visit someone with which (according to the German Embassy rules/requirements/interpretations) you do not have a legitimate (true) relationship.

Keep in mind that there are no one-reason that ends all, the application is reviewed in its entirety.

Here is how your application was (probably) judged:

  1. You applied for a short term visit visa; the purpose of your visit was unclear.

  2. In addition, you submitted documents. These documents should show [a] you are financially capable of supporting yourself on this trip; [b] you have an itinerary that matches the intended purpose and duration of your trip; [c] you have significant ties to your home country such that you are likely to return at the end of your trip. The documents did not fulfil the requirements for which they were submitted.

Now, the next part is the interview. This is done for many reasons:

  1. Confirm/establish the validity of documents.
  2. Confirm the intent of visit.
  3. Detect fraudulent applications.

Your answers in this interview (for whatever reason) were not to the satisfaction of the officer and, given on the other negatives in your application the officer decided that you did not meet the criteria for a short term visit.

You are of course free to lodge a request for review.

  • So if he wanted to reject me for insufficient ties to Iran, why did he invited me for second interview and asked about why is she older than me, how is her family, how did you met , was it in person or on internet, how long do you know he?!! @burhan-khalid – Masan Jul 18 '16 at 8:56
  • I think I clarified and answered his concerns about, the way we are acquainted, certainty for my travel purpose, confusion in travel plans, ambiguity in oral interview. Otherwise, he could draw circles around those items which are already on the "Notice of rejection" paper. @burhan-khalid – Masan Jul 18 '16 at 12:35
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    It does not matter what you think, it matters what the officer thinks. Keep in mind that he is assuming you are trying to immigrate and never return. It is your job to convince him otherwise - and on this occasion, he was not convinced. It is as simple as that. – Burhan Khalid Jul 18 '16 at 12:37
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Another explanation of what happened was that he knew that financial things weren't good, but not so bad that he would have refused your application if you had convinced him that your friendship wasn't suspicious and that you have good enough reasons to return.

  • I made it like a family thing by noting that her son who is about my age plans to play football with me. Also I mentioned some other things that I have in common with her sons and we talk about it. Also I mentioned she is married. So how on earth the visa officer can be suspicious about having a plan behind bushes? <Thanks for the comment> @henrik – Masan Jul 18 '16 at 8:53

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