What is Consular Processing?
Consular processing is one of two paths to lawful permanent residency, generally for those who are outside the United States. Instead of applying for a green card with USCIS, a Foreign National living outside the U.S. may apply for an immigrant visa at a U.S. Embassy or Consulate abroad in order to be admitted as a permanent resident.
To be eligible, a Foreign national must be the beneficiary of an approved immigrant petition. In addition, an immigrant visa number must be immediately available based on the country of residence and preference category in order for a consular appointment to be requested. For more information on if or when a visa is available, see the Department of State’s webiste: https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/legal/visa-law0/visa-bulletin.html.
- Employment-Based: Employment-based consular process is used for a beneficiary of an approved immigrant petition filed on behalf of a beneficiary by an employer. Once the immigrant petition is approved from USCIS, the National Visa Center will notify both the petitioner (the employer) and the beneficiary, and when an immigrant visa is available, a consular appointment will be scheduled. This option is used in employment-based cases when Adjustment of Status timeframes are extremely long.
- Family-Based: Family-based consular processing is used for a beneficiary of an approved immigrant petition that was filed on behalf of a U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident’s spouse, child(ren) or sibling(s). Once a family-based immigrant petition is approved from USCIS, the National Visa Center will notify both the petitioner (U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident) and the beneficiary. When an immigrant visa is available, a consular appointment will be scheduled.
LENTINI VISAS EXPERIENCE
Over the course of my career, we have assisted numerous clients in obtaining immigrant visas/ green cards through Consular processing from U.S. Embassies and Consulates all over the world.