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Can I request a fast appointment at the U.S. Consulate/Embassy?: Perhaps

Many applicants who are required to attend US visa appointments at the U.S. Consulate/Embassy in Canada often ask “well, how soon can I get an appointment?” or “how long do I have to wait?”  These common questions all share a common answer.

The current waiting times vary depending on the location of the Consulate/Embassy. In general, it can take anywhere from 2-4 weeks before a non-immigrant visa appointment becomes available and approximately 6-8 weeks for an immigrant visa appointment. It is without a doubt that upon informing an applicant of these varied processing times, the next questions being asked or thought of is, “is there a way to get an earlier appointment?” or “ can we try and get something sooner?” and the answer to these frequently asked questions is that it depends.

Although the Consulate/Embassy offers an expedited visa appointment services, there are compelling requirements that must be met and extenuating circumstances and factors but be carefully looked at. It is also important to note the burden of qualifying for any visa and expedited appointments, solely relies on the applicant

In order to request an expedited appointment, the applicant must be physically present in Canada and an appointment must already be scheduled through the CSC Visa Information website. Below is a guideline to assist an applicant in determining as to whether your request would likely merit a favorable consideration:

  1. Medical Emergency: Travel to obtain emergency medical treatment in the United States, or to travel in support of another person receiving treatment. (Note: applicants must provide the name, relationship, place and description of the matter, and attending physician’s contact information.)
  2. Students/Exchange Students: Travel to return to the U.S. to attend classes or resume working in a timely manner. (Note: The I-20 or DS-2019 should show a start date that is earlier than the first available visa appointment.)
  3. Emergency Business Travel: Travel to attend to a business matter where the travel requirement could not be predicted sufficiently in advance.
  4. Family Emergency: Travel due to a family emergency, such as a death or illness of an immediate family member (mother, father, brother, sister, child, grandparent or grandchild) in the United States. (Note: applicants must provide the name, relationship, place and description of the matter, and attending physician or funeral home’s contact information.)
  5. A lost or stolen visa.
  6. An unexpected visit that is of significant cultural, political, journalistic, or economic importance.

In all cases, the applicant will be expected to bring to the interview documentation which substantiates the emergency in addition to those forms and supporting documents normally required. How do I request an expedite appointment? Well, all requests must be in writing and sent via email or fax. The Consular section will strive to answer the request as expeditiously as possible. If the applicant’s expedition request is accepted, the applicant should receive a phone call or e-mail response within 48 hours.

If the applicant does not receive an answer after 48 hours of having submitted the request this means that the expedition was not approved and the applicant will need to wait for the original appointment date.

Although the above guideline appears to be very narrow in terms of qualifying reasons to expedite a visa appointment, it still just a guideline and is not encompassing to all scenarios and an applicant’s own circumstances. Further, what’s just as important as following the procedure and preparing your request for an expedited appointment is ensuring your visa application is properly put together and that the requirements are met for a specific non-immigrant or immigrant visa.

If you are facing difficulties in the preparation of your visa application,  or are looking to see if you qualify for expedited visa appointments, or simply is unaware of where to begin, you should consult with a licensed immigration lawyer who can assist you in hopes of securing a positive outcome in your application process.

About Michael Niren

Michael is a graduate of Osgoode Hall Law School in Toronto. He is a member of the Law Society of Upper Canada, the Canadian Bar Association’s Citizenship and Immigration Section and the Associate Member of the American Bar Association. Read more

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6 thoughts on “Can I request a fast appointment at the U.S. Consulate/Embassy?: Perhaps

  1. seawind

    HI,
    I accidentally booked my appointment from a 3rd party site, that hasn’t gotten back to me for the past 4 dayS, I am thinking of cancelling the card I used booking directly ,will this be a reasonable ground for an expedient appointment since the wedding i am going for is getting closer?

    Reply
    1. Immigration Lawyers

      Hi Seawind,

      I’m sorry to hear the communication issue you’re having! You should never book an appointment through a 3rd party site but only directly with the company, you’re working with. We can help you clear up your case and speak with you to start the process for your visa. Please, complete this form for me http://www.visaplace.com/immigration-assessment/ it is just a quick and easy way for me to learn more details about your situation so that I will be able to advise you accurately and determine the best avenue for us to take to give you the best legal advice.

      The above response is for informational purposes only and does not form a lawyer-client relationship nor should it be construed to be legal advice.

      Reply
  2. Godfrey

    Can an person residing in Toronto request for an interview in Ottawa? Thanks

    Reply
    1. Immigration Lawyers

      Hi Godfrey,
      We do have an office in Toronto where you can request an in-person meeting. Our address is 20 Eglinton Avenue W, Suite 2102
      Toronto, ONM4R 1K8

      Reply
  3. Maria

    Do you know if a tourist to Canada (here on a tourist visa) is able to renew his US Visa at the Consulate in Toronto?

    Reply
    1. Muga Rajbhandari

      Hello Maria. That would be up to the discretion of the consulate.
      Regards, Muga

      Reply

The content and comments of this blog are not legal advise and and may not be accurate or complete. If you require legal advice, contact a licensed legal practitioner directly. If you post on this blog, you assume full responsibility for disclosing your identity to the public and VisaPlace nor its affiliates are not responsible for protecting your privacy nor your identity concerning your participation in our blog and you assume any risks in participating.

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