General Information

An immigrant visa is a document issued by a U.S. consular officer abroad which allows the holder to travel to the United States and request admission into the country as a lawful permanent resident (LPR).

In general, to apply for an immigrant visa, a foreign citizen seeking to immigrate generally must be sponsored by a U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident immediate relative(s), or prospective U.S. employer, and have a petition approved  by the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS).

In most cases, the National Visa Center (NVC) is the office in charge of scheduling visa application interviews. Once your interview has been scheduled, the NVC will inform you promptly. If you have been selected in the Diversity Visa Lottery, the Kentucky Consular Center (KCC) will schedule your interview and inform you. Fiancé(e) visa applicants will receive an e-mail from the Consular Section informing that their case is ready for processing; this message will include instructions to schedule the interview.

If you cannot come to an interview that was already scheduled by the NVC or KCC, please contact us at including your full name and case number (MTVXXXXXXXX) in the subject line. We will contact you as soon as we receive your message to indicate how to reschedule your interview.

The NVC and the Embassy cannot do anything regarding your case until USCIS has approved your petition and submitted it to the NVC.

To find out if USCIS has approved your petition, please visit the USCIS website and use the “Case status” tool.

If you are applying for a visa for a relative (IR/CR for a spouse or child of a U.S. citizen), three months have gone by since USCIS approved the petition, and you have not received a notification from the NVC, we suggest contacting the NVC using this contact form.

If you are a Fiancé(e) visa applicant, two months have gone by since USCIS approved your petition, and you have not been contacted by the Embassy, please contact the NVC using this contact form.

If you have filed a petition on behalf of a relative under categories F1, F2, F3, or F4 or have applied for an employment-based immigrant visa under category E (limited categories), you must check your “priority date” (the date that the petition was received by USCIS) before you contact the NVC. The Department of State uses this date to determine if your petition is “current” (if visas are available for your category).

To find out if your visa category’s “priority date” is “current”, you can check the Visa Bulletin. If your “priority date” is “current” or at least six months have gone by since it became “current” and you have not received a notification from the NVC, please contact the NVC using this contact form.

NOTE: You can find your “priority date”:

  • Checking all mail received from the NVC. The priority date appears on every letter sent by the NVC.
  • Contacting the NVC using this contact form.
  • Checking the I-797 form you received from USCIS. USCIS assigned a priority date to your petition when it received it.