Understanding US Visa Refusal and Re-application

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Reason for us visa refusal

There is no specific reasons for visa refusals because they vary. After refusals, the consulate usually gives the applicant a form stating the reasons for refusal like 221g (administrative processing) or 214b. (Refusal)

Meaning Visa Refusal

According to the visa law designed by U.S. immigration, if the applicant is not able to prove that he/she meets the requirements to be issued a visa, a visa must be denied. This could either be because the application submitted by the applicant does not meet the requirements of the visa category which he applied for, or because there are grounds for ineligibility based on other aspects of the visa case. A visa refusal is when an applicant is denied their non-immigrant visa application by a U.S. consular officer according to the Immigration and Nationality Act.

How to appeal the refusal?

Some visa refusals can be overcome by providing additional information by applicant, the newly provided information should establish the applicant's eligibility for the visa. If you have additional information and evidence that can help the decision of the visa officer to be in your favor, you should reapply for the visa adding all the information and supporting documents.

Applicants refused under the refusal case (221g) might be refused because of any documents missing or if the consulate needed any additional information.

Applicants refused under Section 214(b) INA might be because they were not able to convince the consular officer that they have strong and long-term family, social, and economic ties outside the United States which will compel them to leave the United States after their authorized temporary stay.

The following are the indicators that the Consular officers look forward to in every application that helps them determine whether the applicants has compelling ties to their home country:

  • Whether the applicants has traveled to the U.S. before and how long he/she stayed? If they stayed longer than 6 months, did they have INS approval to do so? To verify this, the applicant must bring their INS extension approval notices to their interview.
  • Whether the applicant has traveled to the U.S. previously and how long they have been back in their home country
  • If the applicant has children and/or grandchildren back in their home country and how many they are
  • Whether their relatives in the U.S. ever went to their home country to visit their families as is normal for foreign students, workers, and residents in the U.S.
  • If the applicant are active professionally or gainfully employed in their home country. If yes, how much do they earn and what is the nature of their work?

Older applicants (mostly visiting Parents) do not understand when they are denied after they apply the second time after visiting the US once, even though INS approved an extension of stay during their initial visit. Usually, these applicants were in the U.S. for a year or more and have been back in home country only a short while. In this case, the applicants find it difficult to prove that they have compelling ties in their home country, which makes them ineligible to receive another visa.

What to do when an application is refused

Once an application is refused a refusal letter is issued which explains the reason for refusal and the next step to take.

If and when one can reapply

One can reapply as many times as one wants.

Strong ties?

Ties are referred to as an area of one’s life which binds or compels them to their home country. These ties differ from country to country, city to city, individual to individual. Examples of these ties include possessions, employment, social and family relationships. The ties can be a person’s job and income, a house or apartment, a car, close family relationships, bank accounts, etc.

These ties satisfy a consular officer that the applicant will be compelled to leave the United States voluntarily after an authorized temporary visit. For example, you may bring a letter from your current employer, on letterhead, with your position/job title, length of employment, and monthly salary and your three most recent months’ bank statements.

In many cases, younger applicants may not have had an opportunity to establish these ties, the U.S. law then considers educational status, school grades and long-range plans in home country

If the denial under Section 214(b) is permanent

No it is not. The applicant’s visa may be approved if he/she adds new relevant information which was not presented to the interviewing officer at the time of the first application, or if the applicant’s circumstances has changed significantly since the last application.

Duration of reapplication after being refused

An application can be reapplied or resubmitted at any time after refusal. The application may be resubmitted if there are additional information or supporting documentation available that may further prove that the applicant is qualified for a visa.

I presented all the documents I was told to bring, but my application was turned down anyway. What else should I bring?

Submitting documents might not necessarily be the problem but could be that the applicants current overall situation (as supported by those documents) was not enough adequate to convince the consular that he or she is not an intending immigrant. , This is because the U.S. law says that all applicants for nonimmigrant visas are intending immigrant until they are able to prove otherwise.

Why are the visa interviews so short? I was refused after only a couple of questions and the interviewer hardly looked at my documents?

The Visa officers are experienced and experts at what they do, and because of this, they are able to quickly review the application form and submitted documents in order to know the type of questions they will ask.

When I applied for a visa, I told the officer I would return to my home country after a short stay in the US. Why didn't the officer believe me?

Visa officers are analyzes the applicant’s situation so as to make a decision. When the applicant states that he/she intends to return to home country, the statement alone is not enough to show that they really qualify for the visa under the requirements of the U.S. law.

If my visa application is denied, would it help to have a high ranking official like congressmen/senator contact the consulate?

No. The consular officers are the only ones authorized by the United States law to issue or refuse visas. Additionally, United States law do not listen to the decisions on visa cases from outside influences. The only way an applicant can influence a reversal of denial is only by providing new evidence of strong ties

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