Immigrant Visa Information

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In general, a person who wishes to immigrate to the United States must have a petition approved by U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) before applying for an immigrant visa. The petition is filed either by a qualified relative or a potential employer at a USCIS office in the United States. Specific information about filing immigrant petitions is available on the USCIS website. An individual with an approved petition and a priority date that is current for processing (when applicable) is eligible to apply for an immigrant visa or K nonimmigrant visa.


U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has authority over the immigrant visa petition process. More information is available at:;

USCIS Immigrant Fee

Effective December 23, 2016, all individuals issued immigrant visas overseas must pay a US$220.00 USCIS Immigrant Fee before traveling to the United States.  Only prospective adoptive parents whose child(ren) is/are entering the United States under either the Orphan or Hague Process, Iraqi and Afghan special immigrants who were employed by the U.S. government, returning residents, and those issued K visas are exempt from the new fee.  The below USCIS website has more details on the new fee, including contact information for USCIS, if there are further questions:

Exceptional Filing

Beginning August 15, 2011, petitioners who believe their situation merits an exception may request the Consular Section to accept the filing. Each request will be evaluated individually.

A petitioner seeking to file a Form I-130 should contact the Consular Section to request consideration for exception and explain the circumstances in detail. The Consular Section will then relay the request for an exception to the USCIS field office with jurisdiction over the U.S. Embassy. The determination of whether the case presents exceptional circumstances which warrant an exception to the general filing process will be made by USCIS. USCIS will publish guidance on the circumstances that may qualify as exceptional on their website.

Medical Requirements

All applicants must undergo a medical exam by an Embassy-approved Panel Physician. Information about the medical exam can be found here: You will receive instructions about how to schedule an appointment for your medical exam from the National Visa Center (NVC) or the Embassy. Do not try to make an appointment before receiving these instructions.

U.S. Embassy Appointment

If you have an interview date, you must appear at the U.S. Embassy on the date and time of your appointment. Please read about security restrictions at the U.S. Embassy that describes what you can and cannot bring with you to your interview. You should bring your appointment letter and the documents required for your visa class.

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