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Stateside Visa Renewal Announced by Department of State

A wide shot of a view from an airport, the sun is setting on the horizon. A silhouette stands in the middle checking their phone.

Photo by Artur Tumasjan on Unsplash

The State Department (DOS) has recently announced a pilot program of domestic visa renewals for H and L visa holders later this year. Ever since 2004, H and L holders must travel back to their home country, renew their visa at the home country’s U.S. Consulate, and then travel back to the U.S. to resume employment. 

At the beginning of the COVID-19 Pandemic in 2020, this international visa renewal process caused a lot of headaches. Foreign nationals had to stay in their home countries when it was time for visa renewal, wait long periods to obtain a visa appointment, and ultimately disrupt workflow for employers. 

While this is a hopeful move by the DOS, there’s been very few details to date. This isn’t a question of “if,” but more of a “how” question. There may be strains on the DOS’s limited resources. One suggestion is a new consular division to handle the workflow. 

This new procedure will benefit you or the H/L visa holders at your company. If you have any concerns regarding this issue, contact my office at +1 630-262-1435.