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Immigrant Consular Processing FAQ

1. What is Form DS-260?
Form DS-260 is an online visa application that must be completed and submitted through the National Visa Center’s website. Form DS-260 (Immigrant Visa and Alien Registration Application) is the first step in immigrant consular processing to become a permanent resident (green card holder) of the United States.

2. What is the National Visa Center?
The NVC is a branch of the U.S. Department of State. It is charged with processing all permanent resident (green card) applications submitted by foreign nationals applying for an immigrant visa through their local U.S. Embassy or Consulate. The NVC is based in Portsmouth, New Hampshire.

3. Is the granting of an immigrant visa discretionary when I consular process abroad?
No, unlike USCIS officers, consular officers cannot refuse to issue an immigrant visa based on discretion. The consular officer must have specific, factual evidence for denying an application.

4. Can I appeal the U.S. consulate’s decision to not grant me an immigrant visa?
Consular cases that are denied are generally not subject to review, they are final. A formal interview with a consular officer is a necessary step prior to the issuance of a green card.

5. What are the fees associated with filing DS-150?
There is a $345 processing fee for filing Form DS-260.

6. Do I need to take a Medical Exam before entering the U.S. as a lawful permanent resident?
Yes, U.S. immigration law mandates that foreign national who applies for an immigrant visa must undergo a medical examination to determine whether he or she poses a risk to the public health of the United States.
In your NVC interview letter, you will be instructed to undergo an immigration exam and complete Form I-693 (Report of Medical Examination and Vaccination. Please contact our attorneys to determine the best time to complete the medical exam because they do have certain validity period.
Although there is no fee associated with Form I-693, you are responsible for paying for your I-693 medical exam (these fees vary depending on doctor and location). NVC will instruct you to bring your completed I-693 form with you to your immigration interview.