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National Visa Center Process

After Your Petition is Approved

When petition (Forms I-130) is approved by USCIS in the United States is sent to the Department of State's National Visa Center (NVC) for pre-processing. When your petition becomes current, or is likely to become current within one year, the NVC initiates immigrant visa pre-processing, including collecting visa fees, forms, and documents from sponsors (petitioners) and immigrant visa applicant(s). When this visa become current and NVC request fees, forms and document from sponsor and petitioners, EJ Tax & Immigration Services, can help you to finish the entire process of the visa, by furnish all request documents and evidence to NVC to complete the case then is sent to the U.S. Embassy to the Foreign Country of Chargeability to be processed. 

 

Some of the Forms that are required to fill out to process the visa are:

 

 Step 1: Choose an Agent

 

Choice of Address and Agent (DS-261)

Your first step is to choose an agent.

Your agent will receive communication from the NVC about your case. You may act as your own agent or you may choose your petitioner, a family member, friend, attorney, immigration professional, or any other person you trust. You may have an agent that represented you and the petitioner in the petition process with USCIS. However, you will need to formally select an agent to represent you for your visa processing. To choose your agent, complete the Choice of Address and Agent (DS-261).

 

Step 2: Pay Fees

After you choose your agent, you need to pay your processing fees. There are two processing fees:

  1. Immigrant Visa Application Processing Fee

  2. Affidavit of Support Fee

According to NVC, after submitting your payment online, please allow up to 1 week for NVC to process your fee payments before continuing to the next step. You will not be able to access Form DS-260 (Immigrant Visa and Alien Registration Application) until NVC has processed your payments.

 

Step 3: Submit Visa Application Form

After you pay your fees, you and each qualified family member immigrating with you must complete the Application for Immigrant Visa and Alien Registration (Form DS-260) in the Consular Electronic Application Center(CEAC).

 

Based on information provided by NVC “Submitting Form DS-260 does not formally execute a visa application.”  The visa application is not formally made until the visa applicant(s) is interviewed by a U.S. consular officer.

  1. Form DS-260 (Application for Immigrant Visa and Alien Registration)

Before filling the Form DS-260, You will need the following to access the Consular Electronic Application Center (CEAC):

 

  • NVC Case Number

  • Beneficiary ID Number

  • Invoice ID Number from your NVC Welcome Letter

After submitting Form DS-260 online, you must print the confirmation page and bring it to your interview. You can print this from CEAC any time after you complete your DS-260 application.

 

Step 4: Collect Financial Documents

After you submit your visa application, you may need to collect documents showing your petitioner has the ability to financially support you in the United States. You will submit these documents to NVC in Step 6.

Petitioners are required to submit an Affidavit of Support form and evidence of their income. The Affidavit of Support form, also called the I-864, is legally required for most family-based and some employment-based immigrants. It is a legal contract between the petitioner (sponsor) of an immigrant visa applicant and the U.S. government. Generally, the following intending

immigrants need an Affidavit of Support:

 

  • Applicants for family-based immigrant visas, including certain orphans.

 

  • Applicants for employment-based immigrant visas where a relative filed the immigrant visa petition or has a five percent or greater ownership interest in the business that filed the petition.

 

There is a detailed explanation of who needs an Affidavit of Support and who is exempt below. You can also review the instructions for each form on USCIS’s website (www.uscis.gov

 

  • I-864EZ

  • I-864

  • I-864A

  • I-864W

 

At EJ Tax & Immigration Services, we make sure that your forms are accurate and supported by appropriate evidence.  To gather the required financial documents, your petitioner (the person who filed the petition on your behalf) must do the following:

  • Complete an Affidavit of Support form

  • Obtain financial evidence

 

Step 5: Collect Supporting Documents

Based on information collecting from Department of State (NVC), After you collect your financial forms and supporting financial evidence, you and each family member immigrating with you to the United States should collect the civil documents that are required to support your visa application.

 

You will need to: 

  • Gather the documents that apply to you using the information below.

  • Send a photocopy of all required civil documents to NVC. (see submission instructions in Step 6).

  • Bring the original documents (or certified copies) plus a photocopy to your visa interview at the U.S. Embassy or Consulate.

All documents not written in English, or in the official language of the country in which you are applying for a visa, must be accompanied by certified translations. The translation must include a statement signed by the translator stating that:

  • The translation is accurate, and

  • The translator is competent to translate.

 

Your civil documents must be issued by an appropriate authority in your country. Use the Document Finder tool below to learn about the requirements for each country.

Then review each category of civil documents listed below, and obtain any that apply to you or your immigrating family members. You will submit photocopies of these documents to NVC in Step 6.

 

Adoption Documentation

If an intending immigrant child was adopted and if the child’s application to immigrate is based upon a parent-child relationship, then you must submit the below custody documents.

If you are the adoptive parent and/or petitioner, you must provide:

  1. A certified copy of the adoption decree.

  2. The legal custody decree if custody occurred before the adoption.

  3. A statement showing dates and places where the child resided with the adoptive parents.

  4. If the child was adopted when aged 16 or 17 years old, you must submit evidence that the child was adopted with, or subsequent to, the adoption of a natural sibling under age 16 by the same adoptive parent(s).

  • Send a photocopy of the above documents to NVC.

  • Bring the original documents (or certified copies) plus a photocopy to your visa interview at the U.S. Embassy or Consulate.

For country-specific guidelines on how to obtain acceptable adoption and custody documents, use the Document Finder above.

Birth Certificates

You and each family member immigrating with you must obtain an original birth certificate or certified copy.

  • Send a photocopy of each birth certificate to NVC.

  • Bring the original birth certificate plus a photocopy to your visa interview at the U.S. Embassy or Consulate.

For country-specific guidelines on how to obtain acceptable birth certificates, use the Document Finder above.

 

Court and Prison Records

If you were convicted of a crime, you must obtain a certified copy of each court and prison record, even if you were later granted amnesty, a pardon, or other act of clemency.

  • Send a photocopy of each court and prison record to NVC.

  • Bring the certified copy of each court and prison record plus a photocopy to your visa interview at the U.S. Embassy or Consulate.

For country-specific guidelines on how to obtain acceptable court and prison records, use the Document Finder above.

 

Marriage Certificates

If you are married, you must obtain an original marriage certificate or certified copy.

  • Send a photocopy of your marriage certificate to NVC.

  • Bring the original marriage certificate plus a photocopy to your visa interview at the U.S. Embassy or Consulate.

For country-specific guidelines on how to obtain acceptable marriage certificates, use the Document Finder above.

 

Marriage Termination Documentation

If you were previously married, you must obtain evidence of the termination of EVERY prior marriage you have had. Your evidence must be an original or certified copy of one of the following documents:  FINAL legal divorce decree, death certificate, or annulment papers.

  • Send a photocopy of your marriage termination document(s) to NVC.

  • Bring the original termination document(s) plus a photocopy to your visa interview at the U.S. Embassy or Consulate.

For country-specific guidelines on how to obtain acceptable marriage termination documents, use the Document Finder above.

 

Military Records

If you served in the military of any country, you must obtain a photocopy of your military record.

  • Send a photocopy of your military records to NVC.

  • Bring a photocopy of your military records to your visa interview at the U.S. Embassy or Consulate.

For country-specific guidelines on how to obtain acceptable military records, use the Document Finder above.

 

Petitioner Documents

If you are applying for an IR5 visa as the parent of a U.S. citizen or for an F4 visa as the brother or sister of a U.S. citizen:  You must obtain an original birth certificate for your petitioner, or a certified copy.

  • Send a photocopy of your petitioner's birth certificate to NVC.

  • Bring the original petitioner’s birth certificate plus a photocopy to your visa interview at the U.S. Embassy or Consulate.

If you are applying for an IR1, CR1, or F2A visa as the spouse of a U.S. citizen or Lawful Permanent Resident and your petitioning spouse was previously married:  You must obtain evidence of the termination of EVERY prior marriage your petitioning spouse has had. This evidence must be an original or certified copy of one of the following documents:  FINAL legal divorce decree, death certificate, or annulment papers.

  • Send a photocopy of the petitioner’s marriage termination document(s) to NVC.

  • Bring the original petitioner’s termination document(s) plus a photocopy to your visa interview at the U.S. Embassy or Consulate.

For country-specific guidelines on how to obtain acceptable birth certificates and marriage termination documents, use the Document Finder above.

 

Photocopy of Valid Passport Biographic Data Page

You and each family member immigrating with you must submit a photocopy of the biographic data page of a currently valid passport. The biographic data page is the page with your photograph, name, date, and place of birth.

  • Send a photocopy of your biographic data page to NVC.

  • Bring your original passport plus one photocopy of the biographic data page to your visa interview at the U.S. Embassy or Consulate.

Important: Do not send your original passport to NVC. You need this document to travel.

For country-specific guidelines on how to obtain acceptable passports, use the Document Finder above.

 

Police Certificates

If you are 16 years of age or older, you must submit a photocopy of a police certificate from all countries you have lived in using below criteria:

If you ...

AND you...

THEN submit a police certificate from...

Are 16 years old or older

Lived in your country of nationality for more than 6 months at any time in your life

Your country of nationality

Are 16 years old or older

Have lived in your country of current residence (if different from nationality) for more than 6 months

Your country of current residence

Have ever lived in another country for 12 months or more

Were 16 years or older at the time you lived there

The country where you used to live.

Were arrested for any reason, regardless of how long you lived in that city or country, and no matter what age you were

 

The city and/or country where you were arrested.

 

  • Send a photocopy of your police certificate(s) to NVC.

  • Bring the original police certificate(s) plus a photocopy to your visa interview at the U.S. Embassy or Consulate.

Note: Present and former residents of the United States do NOT need to submit any U.S. police certificates.

 

Important: Police certificates expire after one year, unless the certificate was issued from your country of previous residence and you have not returned there since the police certificate was issued. If at the time of your interview the following three items are all true, you must bring a new police certificate to your visa interview:

 

  • You are more than 16 years old;

  • The police certificate submitted to NVC was obtained more than one year ago; and

  • You still live in the country that issued the certificate.

For country-specific guidelines on how to obtain acceptable police certificates, use the Document Finder above.

Step 6: Submit Documents to the NVC

After you collect the financial evidence in Step 4, and supporting documents in Step 5, you must submit all of these items in ONE package to NVC. Your case may be significantly delayed if you don't submit all of your documents at the same time.

IMPORTANT: Do not send your original passport or original civil documents such as birth, and marriage certificates. Instead, submit a photocopy of these documents to NVC. However, you must bring these original documents to your visa interview. This is true no matter what method you use to submit documents to NVC. 

There are three ways to submit documents to NVC. The method you use depends on where you are interviewing. Look at your NVC case number and match it to the method below to find out how to submit your documents to NVC. 

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