UNCLAS STATE 040347
E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: CVIS, CMGT
SUBJECT: A REVISED DS-156, NONIMMIGRANT VISA APPLICATION
REF: 03 STATE 032648
1. The Department announces the introduction of an updated
Nonimmigrant Visa Application (DS-156). Posts should
begin using the revised DS-156 as soon as possible. The
form was modified to assist posts in collecting data
elements required for entry in NIV 4.01 (see Reftel).
2. The updated DS-156 includes additional questions, a
dedicated space on the form for a 1-D barcode sticker, and
has been redesigned to synchronize questions to match the
sequence of data fields on NIV 4.01. The date format has
also been revised to match the (DD-MMM-YYYY) format used
on the NIV 4.01 system.
3. Note also that the updated DS-156 includes
specifications for a revised photo format for NIV
processing. Septel will provide full details and revised
FAM notes, but the new photo format matches that used for
U.S. passports. The change is being made to improve the
quality of photos captured in the CCD and allow for more
robust use of facial recognition technologies.
4. The Form DS-156 is now available on the Department''s
A/RPS/DIR Intranet site (http://arpsdir.a.state.gov) and
Internet site (http://www.state.gov/m/a/dir/c4455.htm).
5. Posts may print the English version of the DS-156
locally, or they may order the English version from
Phyllis Smith of A/RPS/MMS/PRD. Posts are reminded that
the DS-156 is subject to the Paperwork Reduction Act of
1995 (PRA), which is administered by the Office of
Management and Budget (OMB). Posts therefore must not
make any changes to the text of the DS-156, nor modify the
layout. While there are no plans at this time to revise
the form again before its 8/31/2004 expiration date, the
Department advises posts to maintain no more than a 6-
month supply of the DS-156.
6. Pursuant to 9 FAM 41.103, posts may translate the DS-
156 locally, provided that the translation is accurate and
that the layout of the translated DS-156 looks as much
like that of the English version as possible. At the top
of the form, "U.S. Department of State" should not be
translated and should remain in English. No Department
approval is required for translations, though posts must
forward a copy of the translation to the Department
(CA/VO/F/P). To assist posts that will be translating the
DS-156, an unlocked ".pdf" file of the DS-156 is posted on
the Internet site listed in para 2.
7. Posts may request or reprogram MRV funds to pay for
expenses of printing and/or translating the DS-156. Posts
should e-mail Betty Ng (CA/EX/RES) or Tracy Henderson
(CA/EX/RES) if they have any funding questions.