Are you still waiting for an interview after submitting your visa application? Once the USCIS approves your visa petition, your case moves to the National Visa Center (NVC) for further action. The NVC collaborates with the Consulate or US Embassy in your home country to schedule your interview.
Your interview plays a crucial role in your immigration visa application, so it’s understandable to be anxious about when it will happen. Processing times can stretch out and cause some applicants to wait longer than they’d like. Having up-to-date information and getting advice from a citizenship attorney in NYC can make the wait more manageable.
This guide covers everything you need to know about NVC scheduling delays, the reasons behind them, and when you can anticipate your interview.
What exactly is the NVC, and what does it do?
The National Visa Center functions under the Department of State, focusing on immigrant visa processing and procedures that take place outside the US. When the time comes for your immigrant visa interview, the NVC works closely with the Consulate or the US Embassy in your home country.
If you’re not a US citizen, this interview is your final hurdle to becoming a lawful permanent resident. Upon successful completion, you can enter the US, and then your green card will be mailed to you.
Understanding the NVC process
Once the NVC receives notice of your approved immigrant visa petition, they generate a case for you. Once an immigrant visa is available, they’ll invoice you for any applicable fees.
With your case now active, you’re responsible for filling out the rest of your application and gathering the necessary supporting documents.
For thoroughness, the NVC reviews all submitted materials to ensure they are both complete and accurate. Only after this vetting process will they move ahead with scheduling your interview. Remember that the timeline for getting an interview date varies due to several influencing factors.
Tracking your case
Once a visa is available to you, the NVC will assign you a unique case number. This number serves as your key to tracking the progress of your case through the Consular Electronic Application Center (CEAC) website. You’ll also receive a case creation letter, a crucial document that you should keep safely stored with your other immigration records.
Submission of additional documents
The petitioner (the person who petitioned for you) needs to provide the NVC with an affidavit of support and other relevant documents. All documents not in English must be professionally translated prior to submission. The list of necessary documents typically includes:
- Your birth certificate
- The information page of your passport
- Marriage or divorce certificates, if applicable
- Legal records if you have a criminal history
- Military service records, if relevant
- Police certificates from countries where you’ve lived for over six months since turning 16
Why all these documents?
The NVC prioritizes accuracy and completeness in every case. That’s why they also request details such as your residency history from the age of 16, biographical information about immediate family members, other names you may have used, and any previous visits to the US.
Submitting your documents
Once you’ve assembled all the necessary documents, your next step is to follow the specific submission instructions provided by the NVC.
They may ask you to upload the documents to the CEAC website or mail them. Upon receipt, the NVC will send a confirmation either by mail or email.
You can contact their service center for the latest updates on your case, although they may not always have real-time information.
Fluctuating processing times
Immigration case backlogs often create delays in processing times, leading to long waits. Additionally, the NVC may ask you for more information or documents, which can further extend the waiting time.
It’s important to regularly check for updates or new messages from the NVC to minimize delays. You can also go online to see which submission dates and cases the NVC is currently working on.
When will you get your interview date?
The NVC will notify you when they can schedule your interview at your country’s Consulate or US Embassy. The timing depends on their workload and could range from several months to over a year. Once notified, you will receive further instructions on what you need to prepare and bring to the interview.
Seeking legal help?
Legal guidance can be invaluable during this process. A citizenship attorney in NYC can help ensure all your documents are accurate and complete.
If you’ve filed a petition for someone else, you might find it helpful to consult a citizenship attorney in NYC.
To get professional legal assistance, contact Berd & Klauss, PLLC, by calling 212-461-7152 and speak with a citizenship attorney in NYC.