Form DS-260, also known as the “Immigrant Visa Electronic Application,” is an online application form used by individuals who are seeking to apply for an immigrant visa to the United States. This form is typically used by individuals who are outside the United States and have been approved for an immigrant visa through family-sponsored, employment-based, or diversity visa (DV) programs.
The DS-260 form is submitted electronically through the U.S. Department of State’s Consular Electronic Application Center (CEAC) website. It collects biographical information, details about the applicant’s intended immigration and travel plans, as well as information about the applicant’s eligibility for an immigrant visa. The form is a crucial step in the visa application process and is used by the U.S. government to determine an applicant’s eligibility for an immigrant visa.
After submitting Form DS-260, applicants are generally required to attend a visa interview at a U.S. embassy or consulate in their home country. During the interview, consular officers will review the information provided in the DS-260 form and may ask additional questions to assess the applicant’s eligibility and intentions. If approved, the applicant will receive an immigrant visa to enter the United States and become a lawful permanent resident.
It’s important to note that the specific requirements and procedures related to Form DS-260 may change over time, so applicants should refer to the U.S. Department of State’s official website or contact the U.S. embassy or consulate in their home country for the most up-to-date information and guidance on the immigrant visa application process.
How to fill out Form DS-260?
Filling out Form DS-260, the Immigrant Visa Electronic Application, is a crucial step in the process of applying for an immigrant visa to the United States. Here are the general steps and guidelines for completing the form:
- Access the DS-260 form:
- Visit the Consular Electronic Application Center (CEAC) website, which is the official platform for submitting the DS-260 form.
- Create an account if you don’t already have one. You’ll need your case number and invoice ID number from the National Visa Center (NVC) to access the form.
- Complete the DS-260 form:
- Follow the instructions provided on the CEAC website.
- Fill out the form online, one question at a time. You can save your progress and return to it later if needed.
- Provide accurate and complete information. Double-check all entries for accuracy and consistency.
- Personal information:
- Provide your personal details, including your full name, date of birth, gender, marital status, and contact information.
- Include information about your spouse and children, if applicable.
- Address and phone numbers:
- Enter your current address and contact numbers.
- Provide additional addresses where you have lived in the past.
- Passport information:
- Include details about your passport, such as the passport number, issuance date, and expiration date.
- Nationality and citizenship:
- Indicate your nationality and citizenship.
- Travel information:
- Provide information about your intended travel to the United States, including your intended address in the U.S., the purpose of your trip, and the intended date of arrival.
- Family information:
- Share details about your family members, including their names, dates of birth, and current locations.
- Work and education:
- Provide information about your current and past employment and educational history.
- Security and background information:
- Answer questions about your criminal and immigration history, including any previous visa denials, deportations, or overstays.
- Medical and vaccination information:
- Include your medical history and vaccination status as required.
- Additional information:
- You may be asked for additional information depending on your specific circumstances, such as previous visa refusals, military service, and other details.
- Review and submit:
- Carefully review all the information you’ve entered for accuracy and completeness.
- Once you’re satisfied, submit the DS-260 form.
- Pay the required immigrant visa processing fee through the CEAC website.
- After submission, you will receive a confirmation page and a confirmation number. Print this page for your records.
- Attend the visa interview:
- Schedule and attend an in-person visa interview at the U.S. embassy or consulate in your home country. You will need to bring the confirmation page and supporting documents to the interview.
Please note that the specific requirements and questions on the DS-260 form may vary depending on your visa category. It’s important to refer to the U.S. Department of State’s official website and the guidance provided by the U.S. embassy or consulate for your specific visa application to ensure you complete the form correctly. Additionally, requirements and procedures can change, so make sure to stay updated with the latest information.
Form DS-260 checklist of required documents
When completing Form DS-260, you won’t be required to submit supporting documents through the online form itself. However, you will need to bring a variety of supporting documents with you to your visa interview at the U.S. embassy or consulate. These documents are essential for the consular officer to assess your eligibility for an immigrant visa. The specific documents you need may vary based on your visa category and individual circumstances, but here is DS-260 general checklist of common documents to bring to your visa interview:
- Passport: Your valid passport with a minimum of six months’ validity beyond your intended date of entry into the United States.
- Confirmation page: A printout of the DS-260 confirmation page, which you receive after submitting the form online.
- Visa fee payment receipt: Proof of payment for the immigrant visa application processing fee.
- Visa appointment letter: The appointment letter confirming the date and time of your visa interview.
- Birth certificates: Original or certified copies of birth certificates for yourself, your spouse, and any accompanying children.
- Marriage certificate: If applicable, provide an original or certified copy of your marriage certificate.
- Divorce or death certificates: If you or your spouse have been previously married, provide original or certified copies of divorce decrees or death certificates, if applicable.
- Police certificates: Obtain police clearance certificates from all countries where you have lived for six months or longer since the age of 16. Some countries may require you to provide an FBI clearance certificate from the United States.
- Medical examination report: A report from a panel physician (approved by the U.S. embassy or consulate) confirming that you have undergone the required medical examination and vaccinations.
- Affidavit of support: If you are applying for an employment-based or family-sponsored immigrant visa, your petitioner (the sponsoring relative or employer) may need to provide an Affidavit of Support (Form I-864) and supporting financial documents.
- Employment documents: If applying for an employment-based visa, provide employment verification letters, resumes, and educational diplomas or degrees.
- Police and court records: If you have been arrested or convicted of any crimes, provide all relevant police and court records.
- Military records: If you have served in the military, provide military records.
- Photographs: Passport-sized photographs meeting U.S. visa photo requirements.
- Other documents: Any other documents relevant to your specific case, such as adoption or custody documents, if applicable.