Integrity Legal

Posts Tagged ‘J-1 Visa India’

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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11th January 2011

Those who read this web log with any frequency may have noticed that the administration tries to post the holiday closing schedules of many of the US Embassies and US Consulates in Asia. This is done in an effort to forestall possibly fruitless trips to a closed US Embassy observing either an American or foreign holiday. The following is the holiday closing schedule of the United States Embassy in New Delhi, India as quoted directly from that Embassy’s official website:

Date Day Holiday Type
December 31,  2010* Friday New Year’s Day American
January 17 Monday Martin Luther King’s Birthday American
January 26 Wednesday Republic Day Indian
February 21 Monday Washington’s Birthday American
April 22 Friday Good Friday Indian
May 30 Monday Memorial Day American
July 4 Monday Independence Day American
August 15 Monday Independence Day Indian
August 22 Monday Janamashtami Indian
August 31 Wednesday Idu’l Fitr Indian
September 5 Monday Labor Day American
October 6 Thursday Dussehra (Vijaya Dashami) Indian
October 10 Monday Columbus Day American
October 26 Wednesday Diwali Indian
October 27 Thursday Govardhan Puja Indian
November 10 Thursday Guru Nanak’s Birthday Indian
November 11 Friday Veterans’ Day American
November 24 Thursday Thanksgiving Day American
December 6 Tuesday Muharram Indian
December 26** Monday Christmas Day American

*    in lieu of January 1, 2011 (Saturday)
**  in lieu of December 25, 2011 (Sunday)

Those seeking services such as the issuance of a Consular Report of Birth Abroad, US  Passport, or additional visa pages for a previously issued American passport are well advised to contact the American Citizen Services Section of an American Mission abroad. In  many cases, Americans seeking such services can make an appointment in advance. Making an advance appointment can greatly facilitate the processing of requests as Consular Officers are provided with an opportunity to foresee the customers needs when an appointment is made in advance. In order to make an appointment online one may be required to register an appointment on the US Mission’s official website.

Those seeking the homepage of the official website of the United States Embassy in New Dehli, India should click HERE.

Those seeking visas such as the US Tourist Visa (B-2 visa), US Student Visa (F-1 visa), US Exchange Visitor Visa (J-1 visa), or the US Business Visa (B-1 visa) may be required to process their visa application through a Non-Immigrant Visa (NIV) Unit at a US Consulate abroad. In many cases, such applications are scrutinized pursuant to section 214b of the United States Immigration and Nationality Act which can create difficulties for those applicants who cannot show “strong ties” to India and “weak ties” to the United States of America.

Those Indian Nationals with Lawful Permanent Residence or American Citizens wishing to obtain an IR-1 visa or a CR-1 visa for an Indian loved one will likely be required to process their visa application through an Immigrant Visa Unit abroad. Unless it is possible to execute a Direct Consular Filing for such a visa, it is likely that such a visa application would only be adjudicated after the initial adjudication of an immigration petition at the United States Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS). For application processing purposes it should be noted that the K1 visa, although a non-immigrant US fiance visa, is generally treated  in much the same manner as an immigrant visa application.

Those Indian Nationals seeking an EB-5 visa for immigrant investment purposes or an L-1 visa for an intracompany transferee are generally required to process an immigration petition at USCIS prior to visa application abroad.

For related information please see: K1 Visa India.

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