U.S. Visas

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U.S. Visa: Reciprocity and Civil Documents by Country

Benin

Benin
Republic of Benin

Reciprocity Schedule

Select a visa category below to find the visa issuance fee, number of entries, and validity period for visas issued to applicants from this country*/area of authority.

Explanation of Terms

Visa Classification: The type of nonimmigrant visa you are applying for.

Fee: The reciprocity fee, also known as the visa issuance fee, you must pay. This fee is in addition to the nonimmigrant visa application fee (MRV fee).

Number of Entries: The number of times you may seek entry into the United States with that visa. "M" means multiple times. If there is a number, such as "One", you may apply for entry one time with that visa.

Validity Period: This generally means the visa is valid, or can be used, from the date it is issued until the date it expires, for travel with that visa. If your Validity Period is 60 months, your visa will be valid for 60 months from the date it is issued.

Visa Classifications

A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V
 
Visa
Classification
Fee Number
of Entries
Validity
Period
A-1 None Multiple 60 Months
A-2 None Multiple 60 Months
A-3 1 None Multiple 24 Months
B-1 None Multiple 36 Months
B-2 None Multiple 36 Months
B-1/B-2 None Multiple 36 Months
C-1 None Multiple 6 Months
C-1/D N/A N/A N/A
C-2 None Multiple 12 Months
C-3 None Multiple 12 Months
CW-1 None Multiple 12 Months
CW-2 None Multiple 12 Months
D None Multiple 60 Months
E-1 2 No Treaty N/A N/A
E-2 2 No Treaty N/A N/A
F-1 None Multiple 36 Months
F-2 None Multiple 36 Months
G-1 None Multiple 60 Months
G-2 None Multiple 60 Months
G-3 None One 60 Months
G-4 None Multiple 60 Months
G-5 1 None Multiple 24 Months
H-1B None Multiple 36 Months 3
H-1C None Multiple 36 Months 3
H-2A None N/A N/A3
H-2B None N/A N/A3
H-2R None Multiple 36 Months 3
H-3 None Multiple 36 Months 3
H-4 None Multiple 36 Months 3
I $20.00 Multiple 6 Months
J-1 4 None Multiple 36 Months
J-2 4 None Multiple 36 Months
K-1 None One 6 Months
K-2 None One 6 Months
K-3 None Multiple 24 Months
K-4 None Multiple 24 Months
L-1 $20.00 Multiple 6 Months
L-2 $20.00 Multiple 6 Months
M-1 None Multiple 36 Months
M-2 None Multiple 36 Months
N-8 None Multiple 12 Months
N-9 None Multiple 12 Months
NATO 1-7 N/A N/A N/A
O-1 $10.00 Multiple 36 Months 3
O-2 $10.00 Multiple 36 Months 3
O-3 $10.00 Multiple 36 Months 3
P-1 $10.00 Multiple 36 Months 3
P-2 $10.00 Multiple 36 Months 3
P-3 $10.00 Multiple 36 Months 3
P-4 $10.00 Multiple 36 Months 3
Q-1 6 $10.00 Multiple 15 Months 3
R-1 $10.00 Multiple 36 Months
R-2 $10.00 Multiple 36 Months
S-5 7 None One 1 Month
S-6 7 None One 1 Month
S-7 7 None One 1 Month
T-1 9 N/A N/A N/A
T-2 None One 6 Months
T-3 None One 6 Months
T-4 None One 6 Months
T-5 None One 6 Months
T-6 None One 6 Months
TD 5 N/A N/A N/A
U-1 None Multiple 48 Months
U-2 None Multiple 48 Months
U-3 None Multiple 48 Months
U-4 None Multiple 48 Months
U-5 None Multiple 48 Months
V-1 None Multiple 120 Months
V-2 None Multiple 120 Months 8
V-3 None Multiple 120 Months 8

Country Specific Footnotes

Although care has been taken to ensure the accuracy, completeness and reliability of the information provided, please contact the U.S. Embassy or Consulate where you plan to apply if you believe this information is in error or if you have further questions.

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Visa Category Footnotes

  1. The validity of A-3, G-5, and NATO 7 visas may not exceed the validity of the visa issued to the person who is employing the applicant. The "employer" would have one of the following visa classifications:

    • A-1
    • A-2
    • G-1 through G-4
    • NATO 1 through NATO 6

  2. An E-1 and E-2 visa may be issued only to a principal alien who is a national of a country having a treaty, or its equivalent, with the United States. E-1 and E-2 visas may not be issued to a principal alien if he/she is a stateless resident. The spouse and children of an E-1 or E-2 principal alien are accorded derivative E-1 or E-2 status following the reciprocity schedule, including any reciprocity fees, of the principle alien’s country of nationality.  

    Example: John Doe is a national of the country of Z that has an E-1/E-2 treaty with the U.S. His wife and child are nationals of the country of Y which has no treaty with the U.S. The wife and child would, therefore, be entitled to derivative status and receive the same reciprocity as Mr. Doe, the principal visa holder.  

  3. The validity of H-1 through H-3, O-1 and O-2, P-1 through P-3, and Q visas may not exceed the period of validity of the approved petition or the number of months shown, whichever is less.

    Under 8 CFR §214.2, H-2A and H-2B petitions may generally only be approved for nationals of countries that the Secretary of Homeland Security has designated as participating countries. The current list of eligible countries is available on USCIS's website for both H-2A and H-2B visas. Nationals of countries not on this list may be the beneficiary of an approved H-2A or H2-B petition in limited circumstances at the discretion of the Department of Homeland Security if specifically named on the petition.  

    Derivative H-4, L-2, O-3, and P-4 visas, issued to accompanying or following-to-join spouses and children, may not exceed the validity of the visa issued to the principal alien.

  4. There is no reciprocity fee for the issuance of a J visa if the alien is a United States Government grantee or a participant in an exchange program sponsored by the United States Government.

    Also, there is no reciprocity fee for visa issuance to an accompanying or following-to-join spouse or child (J-2) of an exchange visitor grantee or participant.

    In addition, an applicant is eligible for an exemption from the MRV fee if he or she is participating in a State Department, USAID, or other federally funded educational and cultural exchange program (program serial numbers G-1, G-2, G-3 and G-7).

    However, all other applicants with U.S. Government sponsorships, including other J-visa applicants, are subject to the MRV processing fee.

  5. Under the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), Canadian and Mexican nationals coming to engage in certain types of professional employment in the United States may be admitted in a special nonimmigrant category known as the "trade NAFTA" or "TN" category. Their dependents (spouse and children) accompanying or following to join them may be admitted in the "trade dependent" or "TD" category whether or not they possess Canadian or Mexican nationality. Except as noted below, the number of entries, fees and validity for non-Canadian or non-Mexican family members of a TN status holder seeking TD visas should be based on the reciprocity schedule of the TN principal alien.

    Canadian Nationals

    Since Canadian nationals generally are exempt from visa requirement, a Canadian "TN' or "TD" alien does not require a visa to enter the United States. However, the non-Canadian national dependent of a Canadian "TN", unless otherwise exempt from the visa requirement, must obtain a "TD" visa before attempting to enter the United States. The standard reciprocity fee and validity period for all non-Canadian "TD"s is no fee, issued for multiple entries for a period of 36 months, or for the duration of the principal alien's visa and/or authorized period of stay, whichever is less. See 'NOTE' under Canadian reciprocity schedule regarding applicants of Iranian, Iraqi or Libyan nationality.

    Mexican Nationals

    Mexican nationals are not visa-exempt. Therefore, all Mexican "TN"s and both Mexican and non-Mexican national "TD"s accompanying or following to join them who are not otherwise exempt from the visa requirement (e.g., the Canadian spouse of a Mexican national "TN") must obtain nonimmigrant visas.

    Applicants of Iranian, Iraqi or Libyan nationality, who have a permanent resident or refugee status in Canada/Mexico, may not be accorded Canadian/Mexican reciprocity, even when applying in Canada/Mexico. The reciprocity fee and period for "TD" applicants from Libya is $10.00 for one entry over a period of 3 months. The Iranian and Iraqi "TD" is no fee with one entry over a period of 3 months.

  6. Q-2 (principal) and Q-3 (dependent) visa categories are in existence as a result of the 'Irish Peace Process Cultural and Training Program Act of 1998'. However, because the Department anticipates that virtually all applicants for this special program will be either Irish or U.K. nationals, the Q-2 and Q-3 categories have been placed only in the reciprocity schedules for those two countries. Q-2 and Q-3 visas are available only at the Embassy in Dublin and the Consulate General in Belfast.

  7. No S visa may be issued without first obtaining the Department's authorization.

  8. V-2 and V-3 status is limited to persons who have not yet attained their 21st birthday. Accordingly, the period of validity of a V-2 or V-3 visa must be limited to expire on or before the applicant's twenty-first birthday.

  9. Posts may not issue a T-1 visa. A T-1 applicant must be physically present in the United States, American Samoa, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands or a U.S. port of entry, where he/she will apply for an adjustment of status to that of a T-1. The following dependents of a T-1 visa holder, however, may be issued a T visa at a U.S. consular office abroad:

    • T-2 (spouse)
    • T-3 (child)
    • T-4 (parent)
  10. The validity of NATO-5 visas may not exceed the period of validity of the employment contract or 12 months, whichever is less.

  11. The validity of CW-1 and CW-2 visas shall not exceed the maximum initial period of admission allowed by DHS (12 months) or the duration of the transition period ending December 31, 2014, whichever is shortest.

  12. The validity of E-2C visas shall not exceed the maximum initial period of admission allowed by DHS (24 months) or the duration of the transition period ending December 31, 2014, whichever is shortest.

 

 

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General Documents

There is no general document information.

Birth, Death, Burial Certificates

Birth Certificates

Available

Fees:  Fees vary from office to office; the system is decentralized.

Document Name: Birth Certificate/Acte de Naissance

Issuing Authority: Mayor or Prefecture office

Special Seal(s) / Color / Format: Stamps are placed on the originally issued documents by the issuing official, but there is no standard stamp. In fact, officials use different stamps even within the same office. These stamps are easily reproduced and cannot be used alone to determine document authenticity.  Certified copies are provided and a tax stamp is attached but the appearances of these stamps vary from office to office, and from year to year.

Issuing Authority Personnel Title: Mayor; Chief of arrondissement

Registration Criteria: Registration is done at the City Council Office (of the area) where the parents reside

Procedure for Obtaining: Parents must provide the “Fiche de déclaration de naissance” obtained at the hospital where child was born.

Certified Copies Available: Birth certificates copies can be certified from the original in the registry book or from the original presented by the requestor.  However, these documents are easily replicable by document vendors and cannot be relied upon by themselves as stand-alone documents.

Alternate Documents: Extrait d’acte de naissance/Volet Nᵒ1/Souche/Jugement supplétif d’acte de naissance

Exceptions: None

Comments: Applicants often attempt to use notarized documents in place of a certified document, or provide a notarized transcript taken from a copy that was not originally certified. As a result, only original documents are able to be used to verify the validity of a document and notarized documents cannot be accepted.

 

Death Certificates

Available

Fees:  Fees vary from office to office; the system is decentralized.

Document Name: Acte de Décès

Issuing Authority: Mayor or Prefecture office

Special Seal(s) / Color / Format: Stamps are placed on the originally issued documents by the issuing official, but there is no standard stamp. In fact, officials use different stamps even within the same office. These stamps are easily reproduced and cannot be used alone to determine document authenticity.  Certified copies are provided and a tax stamp is attached but the appearance of these stamps varies from office to office, and from year to year.

Issuing Authority Personnel Title: Mayor; Chief of arrondissement

Registration Criteria: Registration is done at the City Council Office (of the area) where the parents/the deceased  reside

Procedure for Obtaining: Parents must provide the “Certificat de Décès” issued by a doctor or obtained at the hospital where the person passed away. They can also provide an “Attestation de Décès” issued by the neighborhood chef  

Certified Copies Available: Death certificates copies can be certified from the original in the registry book or from the original presented by the requestor.  However, these documents are easily replicable by document vendors and cannot be relied upon by themselves as stand-alone documents.

Alternate Documents: Extrait d’acte de  décès/Volet Nᵒ1/Souche/

Exceptions: None

Comments: Applicants often attempt to use notarized documents in place of a certified document, or provide a notarized transcript taken from a copy that was not originally certified. As a result, only original documents are able to be used to verify the validity of a document and notarized documents cannot be accepted.

Comments:  They follow the same process as birth certificates, but are considered more reliable than the birth certificates.

Marriage, Divorce Certificates

Marriage Certificates

Available

Fees: Fees vary from office to office; the system is decentralized.

Document Name: Marriage Certificate/Acte de mariage

Issuing Authority: Mayor or Prefecture office

Special Seal(s) / Color / Format: Stamps are placed on the originally issued documents by the issuing official, but there is no standard stamp. In fact, officials use different stamps even within the same office. These stamps are easily reproduced and cannot be used alone to determine document authenticity.  Certified copies are provided and a tax stamp is attached but the appearances of these stamps vary from office to office, and from year to year.

Issuing Authority Personnel Title: Mayor or Chief of Arrondissement

Registration Criteria: Presentation of birth certificates of applicants is required. There are no checks as to whether the fiancés are previously married, but there is a public notice at the mayor’s office to say that a couple will be wed, and if anyone objects, they must present the issue before the wedding to the mayor’s office. This is seldom an obstacle to marriage.

Procedure for Obtaining: Marriage certificates are granted at the place where the marriage was held.

Certified Copies Available: Certified copies are available

Alternate Documents: Extrait D’Acte de Mariage

Exceptions: None

Comments: To facilitate DV fraud, many mayors are complicit in issuance of false marriage documents.  Several fraud indicators such as a marriage performed at the end of a year (where there are additional pages to add marriages later), and the use of washed documents or notarized documents in the place of an original copy are common. Often, the only way to verify the authenticity of a document is to physically drive to a mayor’s office to examine the marriage book.

 

Divorce Certificates

Available

Fees: There may be a fee for this service

Document Name: Acte de Divorce, Jugement d’acte de Divorce, or Jugement

Issuing Authority: The court who authorized the divorce

Special Seal(s) / Color / Format: These are multipage documents. The number of pages varies depending on the debates and the judge's motivation.

Issuing Authority Personnel Title:   the Judge President of audience and the Court Clerk

Registration Criteria: Registered at court and must be co-signed by the Judge and Court Clerk.

Procedure for Obtaining: Applicants should contact the court who authorized the divorce

Certified Copies Available: Certified copies are available

Alternate Documents: There are no alternate documents

Exceptions: None

Comments:  Divorce certificates can only be obtained by a Court order between the parties involved. Post has seen a large volume of false divorce certificates. Generally, the courts are open to verifying documents for the consulate. The name of the document may vary depending on the specific judge.

 

Identity Card

Available

Fees:  CFA 2,400

Document Name: National ID card/Carte Nationale d’Identité.

Issuing Authority: Prefecture office

Special Seal(s) / Color / Format: Benin ID cards are yellow and have the same formatting

Issuing Authority Personnel Title: Prefect

Registration Criteria: Registration is done at the City Council Office and at the Prefecture

Procedure for Obtaining: National ID cards are grant to native born Beninese upon presentation of the following documents: the “souche” of the birth certificate, the certificate of nationality, the certificate “de possession d’état”

Certified Copies Available: Certified copies are not available

Alternate Documents: There are no alternate documents

Exceptions: None

Comments: These documents are easily obtained with false birth certificates. Because there is no centralized birth record, and the birth certificate presented are not authenticated, it is easy to obtain a false national ID card.

Police, Court, Prison Records

Police Certificates

Available

Fees: Depends on the issuing office

Document Name: Casier Judiciaire

Issuing Authority: Tribunal de Premiere Instance

Special Seal(s) / Color / Format: white A4 size paper with a Timbre Fiscal stamp (similar to a US postage stamp).

Issuing Authority Personnel Title: the “Procureur de la République” and/or the “Greffier en chef”

Registration Criteria: Upon presentation of the birth certificate but may vary from office to office.

Procedure for Obtaining:

  • Native born Beninese – Apply to the Tribunal De Premiere Instance that has their place of birth in their jurisdiction. You may apply by mail for this document.
  • Non Beninese - Apply to the Tribunal de Première Instance upon showing their birth certificate and a copy of their ID card.

Certified Copies Available: Certified copies are available

Alternate Documents: Extrait Du Casier Judiciaire

Exceptions: None

Comments: There is no centralized database that local police offices can check. As a result, police certificates only check the records at the court in which the request is made and does not apply to possible criminal records in all other places in Benin.

 

Court Records

Unavailable.

 

Prison Records

Available: Prisons records are part of the Police Certificate.  Please see Police Certificates for more information.

Military Records

Available

Fees: There are no fees

Document Name: Certificat du Service Militaire

Issuing Authority: Chef de Corps

Special Seal(s) / Color / Format: There are no special seal(s)/ color/format

Issuing Authority Personnel Title: Chef de Corps

Registration Criteria: There is no registration criteria

Procedure for Obtaining: Applicants should submit a request to the Chef de Corps

Certified Copies Available: Certified copies are available

Alternate Documents: Certificat de bonne conduite

Exceptions: None

Comments: Certificates, diplomas and end-of-internship certificates

At the end of each internship, a certificate or diploma is issued, depending on the quality of the internship or training. These certificates are issued at the closing ceremony. They are signed jointly by the director of the school or training center and the Chief of the General Staff for the joint trainings, or the chiefs of staff of the different armies with regard to the training specific to each army.

Passports & Other Travel Documents

Types Available (Regular, Diplomatic, Official, etc.): Regular, Diplomatic, Official

Fees: CFA 30,000 for the regular passport

Document Name: Passport

Issuing Government Authority: Immigration Office

Special Seal(s) / Color / Format: Regular passports are green, Diplomatic passports are red with a squirrel etched into the bottom right hand corner of the front cover, and service passports are dark blue with a squirrel etched into the bottom right hand corner of the front cover. The biographic data page has a picture of the individual the passport is for and machine readable information. The opposite page has a picture of an elliptical world map and the passport ID number.

Issuing Authority Personnel Title: D.E.I. Cotonou

Registration Criteria: There is no registration criteria

Procedure for Obtaining: Upon submission of the required documents to the Immigration Office

Alternate Documents: There are no alternate documents

Exceptions: None

Comments: None

Other Documents Available: Consular ID cards are issued at Embassies outside of Benin; however, these documents are not considered reliable.

Other Records

Types Available (Regular, Diplomatic, Official, etc.): Certificate of Residence

Fees: There may be a fee for this service

Document Name: Attestation de Résidence

Issuing Government Authority: Court/chef quartier

Special Seal(s) / Color / Format: There is no special seal(s)/color/format

Issuing Authority Personnel Title: Court

Registration Criteria: There is no registration criteria

Procedure for Obtaining: Applicants should contact their local court to submit a request

Alternate Documents: There are no alternate documents

Exceptions: None

Comments: None

Visa Issuing Posts

Post Title: Embassy

Address: B.P. 2012
                 Cotonou, Benin

Phone Number: (229) 21-30-06-50
                             21-36-75-00
                             21-30-17-92

Email: IVcotonou@state.gov

Comments / Additional Information:  None

Visa Services

All Non-immigrant and Immigrant visa for Benin.

Additional Information for Reciprocity

Although care has been taken to ensure the accuracy, completeness and reliability of the information provided, please contact the U.S. Embassy or Consulate where you plan to apply if you believe this information is in error or if you have further questions.