Russia no longer allows the consulates to employ locals within Russia. Consequently, the US consulate in Moscow suspended most visa services due to a reduction in staff by 75%. Likewise, US consulates in Yekaterinburg and Vladivostok suspended consular services.
The US consulates in Russia no longer offer any nonimmigrant visa services, except for diplomatic visas. Nonimmigrant visas include any visa which is for a temporary stay in the US. Examples are: B1/B2 for visiting; F1 for students; J1 exchange programs, and certain employment visas.
Immigrant visa applications will be processed only on the following grounds:
- life-or-death emergencies, and
- age-out cases. Age-out cases refer to minor unmarried children who will soon turn 21 years of age and no longer be child dependents of a marriage or fiance relationship.
Immigrant visa applicants who meet these criteria should contact the National Visa Center to request an expedited appointment. Our clients should contact our office to inquire.
The Russian consulates are arranging for alternate processing locations for immigrant visa applicants who do not meet the criteria above. Consulates should update their websites. These consulates will likely forward cases to new consulates in adjoining countries. This is not the first time consulates close and move cases. As such, there will be delays, but the case files should not be lost, in all likelihood.
Most likely, the National Visa Center will notify clients and representative attorney when a new consulate post is identified and the file has arrived there.
Call for Assistance
Consider a licensed, professional immigration legal representative before proceeding. Immigration law is large and diverse, covering many types of immigration. Government agencies have become increasingly adversarial. Don’t take risks. It helps to have our team on your side to prevent avoidable and unnecessary delays, anticipate problems, and effectively navigate your matter toward successful completion. We provide a free initial consultation for those interested in possibly working with us on case processing, and we’re happy to answer your questions.