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How to Apply

The Immigrant Visa (IV) unit works together with the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) and the National Visa Center (NVC) to process your visa. Documents may be requested by USCIS and the IV unit.

Click on headings below to get information on each step.

  Step 1: Which category do you qualify for?
  There are various Visa categories that you may be qualified for, applying for the correct visa and submitting the correct petition to USCIS is an important step in the Visa Application Process.
Step 2: Send your required petition to the correct application center.
  Depending on your resident status, you may be required to send your petition to either the USCIS in the U.S. or to USCIS in Frankfurt.
Step 3: When your petition is approved.
  Depending on where you applied, different steps need to be taken to continue the visa process.
Step 4: Gather required documentation.
  Both the National Visa Center and the Frankfurt IV unit will be requiring certain documentation in order to process your visa. 
Step 5: Follow the instructions from your application center.
  Depending on your application center, what happens after you have collected all original documents varies. Please follow the instructions of your application center carefully.
Step 6: Get your medical examination done.
  You need to complete your medical examination with one of the approved physicians before your final visa interview can be scheduled. The list of approved physicians can be found here.
Step 7: Come to your interview on your appointment day.



On the day of your scheduled appointment, please follow all of the listed instruction here.



Helpful links for the application process:
Affidavit of SupportFees | GSS Documents DeliveryList of Panel Physicians | Photo Requirements | Police Certificates and Civil Documents by Country | Vaccination Requirements

New and Noteworthy IV

  • Medical Exam: As of October 1, 2013 medical examination results for immigrant visa (IV) applicants will be valid for a maximum of six months.  Visas will be valid only until the expiration date of the medical examination results.  Therefore, IV applicants should not schedule a medical examination until instructed to do so by the Immigrant Visa Unit in Frankfurt, the National Visa Center (NVC) or the Kentucky Consular Center (KCC).  If the visa expires before you travel, you will need to obtain (and pay for) a new visa and medical exam.

Visitor Information

  • Forbidden Items and
    Entry Regulations

    • NO cell phones
    • NO USB Sticks
    • NO portable game devices
    • More restricted items (pdf)

    If you fail to follow these security requirements you may face delays or cancellations to your visit.

    Items cannot be deposited at the U.S. Embassy/U.S. Consulate

    no cell phones allowed inside