State Department Expands Criteria for Waiving In-Person Visa Interview for F and J Applicants
September 15, 2021
The U.S. Department of State announced that consular officers have been authorized through the end of 2021 to waive the in-person interview requirement for certain F and “academic J” (students, professors, research scholars, short-term scholars, or specialists) visa applications. Consular officers have the discretion to waive the visa interview requirement for applicants who:
were previously issued any type of visa
have never been refused a visa unless such refusal was overcome or waived
have no apparent ineligibility or potential ineligibility
In addition, first-time F and academic J visa applicants who are citizens or nationals of a country that participates in the Visa Waiver Program (VWP) may also have the in-person visa interview waived.