New Rules for Filing Immigrant Visa Petitions in Embassies and Consulates worldwide

Recent legislation has led to changes in the procedures American citizens resident abroad will follow if they wish to sponsor an immediate relative (spouse, parent or minor child) for an immigrant visa. Effective immediately, the immediate relative petition (I-130) must be filed with the USCIS office responsible for the petitioner's place of residence (that is, the place of residence of the American citizen who is filing the petition). Consular offices at U.S. embassies and consulates are no longer authorized to accept I-130s, although they will continue to provide guidance to American citizen petitioners and their family members. Responsibility for acceptance and approval of immigrant visa petitions rests solely with USCIS. American citizens should submit their I-130 at the CIS office responsible for their place of residence.

This procedural change may result in a processing delay for some applicants. The Department of State recognizes and sincerely regrets the inconvenience this may cause.

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