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Nonimmigrant Visas
 

Welcome to the site for the Nonimmigrant Visa Unit.

Message for applicants waiting for their passports

Consular Consolidated Database: Updates on Operational Status

We have made significant progress and issued most of the delayed visas worldwide.  We are working to bring our systems back to full operational capacity.
We continue to prioritize immigrant visas, adoption cases, and emergency nonimmigrant visa cases.  We are printing visas for these cases with very few delays. 
We are aware of a small number of visa cases still in process because of system performance issues.  We are working diligently to clear those cases.  
Visa applicants are advised to expect delays of up to one week in addition to normal processing times.  Please take this into consideration when making travel plans.  
Please check with the embassy or consulate where you will apply for additional information.   
Please see our FAQs for further information.

We have made significant progress and issued most of the worldwide backlog of nonimmigrant visa cases.  We are working to bring the Consular Consolidated Database back to full operational capacity.

We continue to prioritize immigrant visas, adoption cases, and emergency nonimmigrant visa cases.  We are printing visas for these cases and all cases with very few delays.

Please check with the embassy or consulate where you will apply for additional information.  


What is a Nonimmigrant Visa?

A U.S. Visa is a document affixed to a page in your passport and issued by a U.S. Embassy or a U.S. Consulate that gives you a permission to apply to enter the United States. A visa does not guarantee entry into the United States. It simply indicates that your application has been reviewed by a U.S. consul, who determined that you are eligible to travel to the port-of-entry – i.e., an international airport, a seaport or a land border crossing, and apply for admission for a specific purpose. Only a U.S. immigration officer of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has the authority to permit you to enter the United States and decide how long you can stay for any particular visit.

Nonimmigrant visas are intended for people with permanent residence outside the United States who wish to go to the United States temporarily for tourism, business, medical treatment, work, or study. Visa Categories depend on the applicant’s purpose of travel. 

What is a Difference between Visa Validity and Length of Stay?

The visa expiration date and the length of time a traveler is allowed to remain in the United States are two different terms.  

Visa validity is the time from the visa issuance date to the visa expiration date as shown on the visa. During this time the visa can be used to travel to the port-of-entry to apply to enter the United States. A visa can be issued for any number of entries, from as little as one entry to as many as multiple (unlimited) entries, for the same purpose of travel.

The expiration date for the visa should not be confused with the authorized length of your stay in the U.S., which is given to you by a U.S. immigration officer at the port-of-entry, on the Arrival-Departure Record, Form I-94. 

Belarusian citizens without residence in Poland may apply for nonimmigrant visas in Warsaw following our regular procedure.

How to Apply for a Visa?

For information about a nonimmigrant visa application process please see How to Apply for a Visa.

We cannot guarantee that you will be issued a visa. Do not make final travel plans or buy tickets until you have a visa.