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The Immigrant Visa Process

Step 3: Submit Visa Application Form

After you pay your fees, you and each qualified family member immigrating with you must complete the Application for Immigrant Visa and Alien Registration (Form DS-260) in the Consular Electronic Application Center (CEAC). You may wish to preview a sample  DS-260 (PDF - 6.4MB) before beginning.

Submitting Form DS-260 does not formally execute a visa application.  The visa application is not formally made until the visa applicant(s) is interviewed by a U.S. consular officer.

Note: You will need your NVC Case Number, Beneficiary ID Number, and Invoice ID Number from your NVC Welcome Letter, to access CEAC.

After submitting Form DS-260 online, you must print the confirmation page and bring it to your interview. You can print this from CEAC any time after you complete your DS-260 application.

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Online Payment and Visa Application Forms Temporarily Unavailable on April 29

Applicants will be unable to pay fees online or access the Form DS-260 Immigrant Visa Application on Saturday, April 29 while we perform scheduled maintenance on the Consular Electronic Application Center (CEAC). You will be unable to pay fees online from 9:00 am until midnight (Washington, DC time) and unable to access the Form DS-260 or check your status from 9:00 am until 9:00 pm. If you try to make a fee payment or submit a visa application during these times, you will receive an error message. Thank you for your understanding.

Who's Involved

U.S. Embassies and Consulates: Find a U.S. Embassy or Consulate, nearest your residence abroad, where you will apply and be interviewed for your U.S. visa.

National Visa Center: After petition approval, the National Visa Center (NVC) handles processing for certain kinds of documents, sending them onward to U.S. Embassies & Consulates. When and how to Contact NVC

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