US Visa Processing Time: How long does it take to obtain a US visa?

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After the embassy interview, ​​you must wait a while to be informed of the result of the visa application. The processing time for different visas varies. On the other hand, it is complicated to estimate US visa processing time accurately. In general, the approximate time for immigrant visas is a few weeks to a few months, and for immigrant visas in some cases, applicants have to wait for years. The conditions of the applicants must also be considered. For example, one person may obtain a US visitor visa within a few weeks, while another may have to wait several months to get it.
In this article, we are going to explain the approximate time of processing a visa application based on the visa type.

 

US Visa Processing time for all types of visas

Depending on the type of visa, the approximate processing time is:

Student Visas

  • F-1 visa: The processing time for this visa is shorter than other visas. Usually, the interview is the last step in the application process. At the end of the embassy interview, it is determined whether the visa is granted to the individual or not. The consular officer will either congratulate you or, if your request is denied, explain to you the reasons that led to the decision. However, in some conditions, you may have to wait a few days to get a definite result.
  • F-2 visa: Applicants for this visa will be notified of the result of their application at the end of the interview. But in most cases, people wait for a few days to two weeks to get the final result. The consulate needs time to review the documents and reasons provided. In the case of this visa, the financial situation of the original visa holder, F-1, is essential. It must be determined whether the F-1 visa holder can financially support his/her dependents in the United States.
  • M-1 visa: Document processing time is almost short for M-1 visa applicants. Processing is done before the interview. At the end of the interview, the individual is congratulated or explained the reasons if the application is rejected. The average processing time for this permission is at least four weeks.

Visitor Visas

  • B-1 visa: The processing time of this visa is not very clear, and it considerably depends on the embassy’s workload. In general, applicants for this visa must wait a few weeks to two months to receive a response from the consulate.
  • B-2 visa: The processing time for this visa also varies from country to country. Applicants for this visa will also have to wait a few weeks to two months.
  • ESTA: Applicants who want to travel to the United States through a Visa Waiver Program need ESTA. This authorization is issued within 72 hours.

Work Visas

  • H-1B visa: The processing time for the H1B visa is usually three to six months. However, since different embassies have different conditions and workload, we recommend that you contact your embassy for more details or contact the US State Department and USCIS.
  • H-1B1 visa: Seasonal fluctuations play a role in determining the processing time of this visa. It is estimated that it will take four to six months to process the documents and issue the visa, but this is uncertain. In this case, it is rational to contact the embassy where you applied.
  • H-2A visa: The issuance of this visa usually takes a long time in some cases, and it is not possible to determine the exact processing time. Employers are advised to submit their application at least 60 days but no more than 120 days before the need to hire a foreign worker. Since agricultural work is seasonal, the US government prioritizes visa applicants’ applications to expedite the processing process.
  • H-3 visa: Applicants for this visa must ensure that their intended institution in the United States files a petition on behalf of them at least six months before the training course starts. They will then be able to go through the rest of the application process. It usually needs four to six weeks to receive a final response from the consulate regarding the application’s approval or rejection.
  • H-4 visa: The visa status of H-4 applicants depends on the status of holders of other H visas. If you apply for a visa at the same time as your spouse, your visa application will be processed and issued simultaneously. However, if you submit your visa application separately, you will receive a visa response depending on the embassy’s workload. Therefore, it can be said that the processing time of the H-4 visa is variable.
  • L-1 visa: The processing time for an L-1 visa is usually between three and four months. However, it should be noted that blanket petitions are processed faster than the individual ones. On the other hand, employers can get the result of their application within 1 to 3 weeks by paying more, which is called premium processing.
  • L-2 visa: The processing time for this visa is 15 days to a month, which may increase depending on the workload of the embassy.
  • R-1 visa: To be approved for an R-1 visa, the employer must first submit a petition to USCIS. It takes six months for USCIS to respond because they need to visit and approve the premises of the organization. If the organization has already approved, the visa application will be processed within two weeks by paying a premium processing fee of about $ 1,225. If you do not pay this fee, it will take two to three months for the visa to be processed after the USCIS approves your petition.
  • P-1 visa: Applicants for this visa typically have to wait between 3 and 6 months. If you want your visa application processed faster, you can pay for premium processing. It costs about $ 1225. If you pay this fee, the result of your visa will be determined within 15 days. If you are not notified within 15 days, the money will be refunded to you.
  • I visa: This visa is issued to those who work in the field of media, and the processing time of this visa is about ten working days.
  • O visa: The processing time for this visa is about 2 to 3 months. If you want to inform you of the result of your visa application in a shorter time, you will have to pay an additional $ 1,225 as a premium processing fee. That way, you’ll be notified of your visa within 15 weeks.
  • E-1 visa: On average, applicants for an E-1 visa will have to wait for 2 to 4 weeks to inform of the outcome of their visa application.
  • E-2 visa: The time required to process this visa is usually between 2 and 6 weeks. This period largely depends on the workload of the embassy. If you do not gain a response within the six weeks, this does not mean that your visa application has been rejected.
  • E-3 visa: Visa processing time for Australian citizens who intend to work in the United States is usually two months.

Visas for victims of trafficking and crime

  • T visa: The processing time for this visa varies and depends on the circumstances of each applicant. The USCIS has not defined a specific time limit for this visa. Depending on the evidence submitted by the applicants, their case will be assessed, so it is not possible to determine the processing time for this visa.
  • U visa: The processing time for this visa is relatively long (between 12 and 18 months). However, depending on the evidence the applicant provides to the USCIS, the processing time may be shorter.

Exchange Visas

  • J-1 visa: First, the Waiver Review Division will review your file and provide recommendations. They will then send these recommendations to USCIS to make the final decision on your visa application. This process usually takes one to four months.
  • Q-1 visa: It takes 15 days to 3 months for a Q-1 visa application to be processed. After processing, the applicants are contacted to be notified of the result of their application’s rejection or approval.

Transit visa

  • C visa: Since the length of stay under the transit visa is short, the processing time is also short. It usually takes five working days to issue a transit visa application.

 

Getting back a passport and issuing a visa

During the visa processing process, your passport will remain at the embassy. The applicant personally cannot go for the delivery of the passport, but the courier service delivers the passport.
Keep in mind that if you have an emergency, the State Department can speed up the interview and visa processing process. In these cases, it is enough to inform the embassy of your country that you are in an emergency.

 

Let’s sum up …

In this article, we tried to describe the approximate processing time for different visas. On the Visa Library website, you can learn about other US visas requirements, including the US photo specification and application fee, as well as an explanation about other US visas. In case you have some experience, please write it down in the comment section. Your comments let the readers choose better and avoid mistakes. Conveying your experiences in comments is a great help for applicants.

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