National Visa Center: Processing Times and More
Author: New York Immigration attorney Alena Shautsova
National Visa Center (NVC) is an agency that processes documents of petitioners before an appointment is scheduled in U.S. consulates. Every time somebody from the United States is sponsoring a family member or a worker, NVC would be involved.
Those lucky applicants who have an attorney working for them, would probably not worry about the points that I will be discussing below. However, if you represent yourself, and you are the one who has to deal with the NVC these points might be helpful.
1. Before any process for an immigrant visa would start, the beneficiary has to pay appropriate fees: an affidavit of support fee (currently $125) and an immigrant visa fee (currently $325). The fees should be paid online. NVC is departing from the practice of collecting the fees by mail.
2. One can find a list of documents that he/she should submit to the NVC on Department of State website: https://travel.state.gov/content/visas/en/immigrate/immigrant-process/documents/Submit_documents.html.
3. All the documents, including an original of the affidavit of support form I 864 should be submitted, preferably, at once. However, it is possible to submit documents gradually.
4. How fast does NVC work? It takes about 10-15 days for the NVC to enter the case into their system once the case is received. It takes about 30 days to review a submission, and about 60 days to schedule an appointment for a complete case.
5. A mailer should use a cover letter provided by the NVC, and if a petitioner is sponsoring multiple beneficiaries, separate packages should be created for each.
It is possible for some applicants from certain countries to submit documents to the NVC via email. For the rest of the countries, NVC accepts documents by mail only.
NVC accepts only copies of the documents. All the originals, an immigrant visa applicant has to bring with him/her to the consulate.