Department of State Suspends Routine Visa Services as a Result of the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19)

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Seyfarth Synopsis: The U.S. Department of State has suspended routine visa services in most countries worldwide. Embassies and consulates in these countries will cancel all routine immigrant and nonimmigrant visa appointments as of March 18, 2020.

As a result of the outbreak of the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19), the Department of State (DOS) has suspended routine visa services in most countries worldwide, and the embassies and consulates in these countries will cancel all routine immigrant and nonimmigrant visa appointments as of March 18, 2020. Embassies and consulates will continue to provide urgent and emergency visa services, as resources allow and depending on the nature of the need. Individuals with an urgent issue that requires immediate travel to the U.S. should follow the instructions provided on the website of the consular post at which s/he intends to apply to request an emergency appointment. A complete list of consular posts and links to their websites is here.

There is not currently a timetable for when these consular posts will resume routine visa services. DOS confirmed that although the routine immigrant and nonimmigrant visa appointments have been cancelled, the machine readable visa (MRV) fee paid by the applicant remains valid and may be used for a visa appointment in the country in which it was paid within one (1) year of the date of payment.

DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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