How to appeal a U.S. visa refusal

The U.S. offers two general types of visas: temporary and permanent.

The most common types of temporary visas are those for visit or tours, to study, work or train or engage in business or occupational duties.  Each temporary visa has an assigned letter.  Tourists for example are issued either a B-1 (temporary visitor for business) or B-2 temporary visitor for pleasure.  u

In most cases, and where the consul is convinced that you are most likely to travel to the U.S. often in the future, you may be issued a B-1 and B-2 visa.

Temporary visas, particularly the tourist visa categories cannot be appealed.  Work and study visas may be appealed or reconsidered.

If your visa application is refused, follow these simple steps.

  1. Know what type of visa application was refused.
  2. Be sure you have the written notice of refusal, a notice on either a green or blue paper.
  3. If it is a tourist visa, there is no appeal.  You may submit a new application after determining what you believe is the most likely reason for refusal.  Unless your personal circumstances have changed, do not apply immediately.
  4. For study visas, check the specific reason for visa refusal such as lack of evidence of funds for studies, unauthorized school, incomplete documentation, or failure to disclose a previous visa refusal.
  5. Work visa refusals normally are due to questions about the employer’s bona fides, ability to pay your salary based on prevailing wage, non-compliance with U.S. Labor Department procedures before filing the work visa petition.
  6. In the study and work visa cases, the petitioner or sponsor in the United States, (school or employer or their authorized representatives) would have to submit the appeal.
  7. IMPORTANT – the U.S. consuls may only refuse your visa application. The consul cannot revoke the approved visa petition. Only the agency that approved the petition can revoke the petition or accept a motion to reconsider or appeal the denial.

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About the Author

Crispin Aranda

Crispin Aranda

Crispin R. Aranda is an established International Visa Conselor and Immigrant Advocate. He is the president of IVC and is in several migration radio programs.


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