Integrity Legal

Posts Tagged ‘J-1 Visa Australia’

25th February 2011

It recently came to this blogger’s attention that the Department of State has proposed a final rule which would raise some of the costs and fees associated with the J-1 visa, a travel document designed for exchange visitors wishing to visit the United States of America. To quote directly from the Federal Register’s official website

§ 62.17 Fees and charges.

(a) Remittances. Fees prescribed within the framework of 31 U.S.C. 9701 must be submitted as directed by the Department and must be in the amount prescribed by law or regulation...

(b) Amounts of fees. The following fees are prescribed...

(1) For filing an application for program designation and/or redesignation (Form DS-3036)—$2,700.00…

(2) For filing an application for exchange visitor status changes (i.e., extension beyond the maximum duration, change of category, reinstatement, reinstatement-update, SEVIS status, ECFMG sponsorship authorization, and permission to issue)—$233.00.

The administration of this blog highly recommends that those interested in this issue click on the links above to read the Federal Register entry in its entirety.

Those who are unfamiliar with the J-1 visa should also note that this visa category is sometimes utilized by foreign nationals wishing to act as Au pairs in the United States of America.

Pursuant to the provisions of section 214(b) of the United States Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) Consular Officers at every US Embassy or US Consulate abroad are required to make the presumption that the applicant for a non-immigrant visa is actually an intending immigrant unless the applicant can provide evidence to overcome this presumption. This triggers a “strong ties” vs. “weak ties” analysis in the mind of the interviewing Consular officer. During such an analysis, the Consular officer will weigh the ties that the applicant has to their home country and compare these with the applicant’s ties to the United States. If the offficer feels that the applicant has stronger ties to a country abroad than to the USA, then the visa will likely be granted.

In some cases, applicants for a United States visa are denied. This would seem to happen more frequently in non-immigrant visa cases than immigrant visa cases, but this can, at least partially, be attributed to the stringent analysis that all Consular Officers must make during the adjudication of certain non-immigrant visa applications. Should a visa be denied, then it may be possible to request reconsideration of that decision. That said, appealing visa denials, especially denials pursuant to section 214(b), is difficult, if not impossible, pursuant to the doctrine of Consular Non-Reviewability (sometimes referred to as Consular Absolutism). This doctrine states that, with exceptions in rare and highly extreme circumstances, a Consular Officer’s discretion regarding the issuance of a visa is virtually absolute.

Some have pondered whether the provisions of section 214(b) applies to applicants for a K-1 visa. In point of fact, although the K-1 visa is a non-immigrant visa category similar to the J-1 visa; the K-1 visa applicant is not scrutinized subject to section 214(b) of the INA as the applicant for said US fiance visa is entitled to have immigrant intent at the time of the K-1 application.

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18th February 2011

Those who follow this blog with an frequency are no doubt aware that the administration routinely posts the holiday closing schedules of the various US Missions in the Asia-Pacific as a courtesy to American Citizens and Lawful Permanent Residents traveling abroad. To quote directly from the official website of the US Embassy in Canberra, Australia:

Public holidays observed by the U.S. Mission to Australia
Date Holiday Observed Closures
Monday, January 17, 2011 Martin Luther King, Jr’s Birthday All posts closed
Wednesday, January 26, 2011 Australia Day All posts closed
Monday, February 21, 2011 Presidents’ Day All posts closed
Monday, March 7, 2011 Labour Day Perth closed
Monday, March 14, 2011 Labour Day Melbourne closed
Monday, March 14, 2011 Canberra Day Canberra closed
Friday, April 22, 2011 Good Friday All posts closed
Monday, April 25, 2011 Easter Monday All posts closed
Tuesday, April 26, 2011 Anzac Day All posts closed
Monday, May 30, 2011 Memorial Day All posts closed
Monday, June 6, 2011 Foundation Day Perth closed
Monday, June 13, 2011 Queen’s Birthday Canberra, Melbourne and Sydney closed
Monday, July 4, 2011 Independence Day All posts closed
Monday, September 5, 2011 Labor Day All posts closed
Monday, October 3, 2011 Labour Day Canberra and Sydney closed
Monday, October 10, 2011 Columbus Day All posts closed
Friday, October 28, 2011 Queen’s Birthday Perth closed
Tuesday, November 1, 2011 Melbourne Cup Day Melbourne closed
Friday, November 11, 2011 Veterans Day All posts closed
Thursday, November 24, 2011 Thanksgiving Day All posts closed
Monday, December 26, 2011 Christmas Day All posts closed
Tuesday, December 27, 2011 Boxing Day All posts closed
Monday, January 2, 2012 New Year’s Day All posts closed

Those wishing to view the official homepage of the US Embassy in Canberra, Australia please click HERE.

Those seeking services which can only be provided by a US Embassy or US Consulate abroad, such as: Consular Report of Birth Abroad issuance, US Passport issuance, or visa page issuance for a previously issued US Passport are well advised to contact the American Citizen Services (ACS) Section of the nearest US Post with appropriate Consular jurisdiction. Those seeking ACS services may be well advised to attempt to make an appointment with ACS online prior to arrival as doing so can streamline processing for both Officers and Americans seeking services abroad.

Those seeking non-immigrant visas to the USA such as the US student visa (F-1 visa) or the Exchange visitor visa (J-1 visa) are likely to see their visa application processed by a Non-Immigrant Visa Unit. It should be noted that non-immigrant visa applications are scrutinized pursuant to section 214(b) of the United States Immigration and Nationality Act.

Those seeking family based visas such as the CR-1 visa or the IR-1 visa are likely to see their visa application processed at a US Post abroad only after receiving immigration petition approval from the United States Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS). It should be noted that for overseas processing purposes the K-1 visa, a non-immigrant US fiance visa, is treated in much the same manner as the Immigrant spousal visas mentioned above.

Those seeking an EB-5 Visa or an L-1 visa are generally required to process an immigration petition prior to the commencement of the visa application process at a US Post abroad. E-2 visa seekers may be able to submit an application directly to a US Post abroad if the applicant is resident in the Consular jurisdiction.

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