Hot Topic: Global Visa Demand and India Heavily Backlogged24 Jun 2016
The American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA) annual conference is a valuable source of up-to-date immigration information, often directly from key government officials. This year the AILA Annual Conference is in Las Vegas from June 22-25, 2016. The Murthy Law Firm lawyers attending the conference are sharing some key updates on increased visa demand at U.S. consulates worldwide and, particularly, in India.
80% Increase in U.S. Visa Demand from India and 60-Day Visa Backlogs
The summer travel season typically leads to some visa processing delays. However, the U.S. consulates in India are experiencing far more demand than usual. As of this writing, India is reported delays of more than sixty days for scheduling candidate visa interviews. Demand for visas in India has increased by more than 80 percent.
The U.S. Department of State (DOS) reports that visa adjudication in India is a priority. They require more staff to contend with application volume, and are working toward this goal through diplomatic channels.
New Indian Consulate Slated for Seattle, WA
India will be opening a new consulate in Seattle, Washington to better accommodate Indian citizens on the West Coast. This should be a help to many, as Northern California and Seattle, Washington are home to many major U.S. tech companies, as well as tech startups. Thus, similar to the establishment of MurthyWest, the Murthy Law Firm’s presence in the Seattle area, the Indian government considers it the right location for a new Indian consulate.
New U.S. Consulate in India is Next Logical Step
The creation of this new Indian consulate will, in turn, allow the U.S. to open a new consulate in India. Another location for a U.S. consulate in India appears likely in the not too distant future.
ESTA Changes Causing Visa Demand Globally
Significant limitations have occurred within the Visa Waiver Program (VWP) this year. As a result of these changes, visas are now required for many individuals who previously qualified for visitors’ visa exemptions under the VWP. This has resulted in a spike in nonimmigrant visa applications in many countries. The U.S. Consulate in Vienna, Austria, reports an increase of approximately 15 percent in visa demand. The Vienna consulate and others expect this demand to continue to increase over the summer.
Anyone planning travel to the U.S., particularly from India, in the upcoming months, should consider the possibility of visa appointment backlogs and other delays in the visa application process. Information and the latest updates will be posted on MurthyDotCom to help foreign nationals in their plans that include travel to and from the United States.
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