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There seems no doubt the answer (mine) to How can I speed up the processing of my Romanian short-stay visa at the Romanian consulate in New York? is wrong. OP responded with a Comment:

Fortunately I did go over their heads and reported it to the visa center and was also encouraged to report this incident to the ministry of foreign affairs. In a few hours time, I got a call from the consulate that my visa was ready.

Whereas my answer includes:

Don't go over their heads

You might consider trying a 'higher authority', perhaps the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Forget it. As @Gayot Fow has mentioned elsewhere on TSE (admittedly not for Romania) the procedure can be expected to be that any specific complaint would be forwarded to the Embassy in NY (if you are lucky). This may achieve further delay.

Admittedly my answer was on the basis that contact could not be established with the issuing authority (I can't reach their consulate by email and when I tried calling, the prompt is in Romanian and there is no option to choose English.) and it seems it was that authority (or its agent) who advised contacting the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (action which appears to have been very effective) rather than OP doing so without prompting.

I think the answer is still in general sound and that the above may be no more than the sort of exception that TSE can't really cater for. Perhaps somewhat akin to mentioning a train route that, on the day OP wants to travel, happens to be out of action due to a landslide.
My answer was tailored to Romania but would have been much the same, in similar circumstances, for any country. And … now another country has cropped up. I am in a quandary what to do for the best. Possibilities seem to include:

1] Carry on regardless
2] delete my answer (and possibly convert Comment into an A)
3] delete only the Don't go over their heads part
4] in future do not mention Don't go over their heads
5] continue to avoid all such expediting Qs
6] something or some combination that is better.


Gayot's advice comes in a question about a Schengen refusal wherein a frustrated OP asked...

I don't know where and how I should complain. My husband has been to Europe 9 times before.

Here's a screen shot showing Gayot's remarks in context...

enter image description here

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    I think there's a difference between "don't go off trying to call the Ministry" and what happened here, where the OP called the visa service (who work for the consulate, and are the people you would contact if your visa application is stuck) and simply did what they instructed. That said, I'm not sure why contacting the national authorities is such a horrible idea if you've exhausted all other recourse. If they aren't processing your application or responding to inquiries (admittedly, I'd give more than a few weeks before this), then how does contacting the ministry in charge make it worse? – Zach Lipton Nov 4 '16 at 5:02
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    Perhaps there's a distinction between complaining about a refusal (as in Gayot's screenshotted advice), where the decision-makers with all the facts are at the consulate, so a foreign ministry isn't going to have anything to do with that, and complaining about inaction on an application, where, if all the usual routes have failed and the consulate is utterly unresponsive, there's a chance an email from the ministry saying "this person keeps calling please do something so they shut up and go away" may help. I agree that there's a timing problem, in that you wouldn't do this until it's too late. – Zach Lipton Nov 4 '16 at 5:53
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    Your answer is great for strict and bureaucratic countries, like the UK and Schengen area members. Not so great for the poorest members of the EU, where the government isn't exactly known for their effectiveness. I'd delete it and convert OPs comment into an answer. – JonathanReez Nov 8 '16 at 7:15
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I have deleted the 'answer' in question and replaced it with a copy of a Comment from OP.

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