Frequently Asked Questions on Immigrant Visas

My immigrant visa petition has been filed but not yet approved. What is the status of my petition? Can an immigrant visa petition be filed for me now?

Your qualifying family member starts the process by filing an I-130 petition with the United States Citizenship and Immigration (USCIS) in the United States. You cannot begin an immigrant visa application at the U.S. Consulate General Rio de Janeiro, or other Posts. You can track the status of your petition application here.

Can my immigrant visa or K1 visa be extended or reissued? 

The expiration date written on your visa is the maximum amount of time the visa is valid.  There are no extensions of immigrant visa validity.

However, if you are unable to travel within the validity period of your visa due to circumstances beyond your control, please send a message to  Please include the full name(s) of the visa applicant(s) and the petitioner, plus the case number, which is typically RDJ followed by ten digits.

What should I do if I have an emergency? 

If you have an emergency that requires immediate travel to the United States, you may request an emergency appointment through the YATRI system.  If you are unable to request an emergency appointment in YATRI, please email to ask if your application can proceed on an emergency basis.  Please include the full name(s) of the visa applicant(s) and the petitioner, and the case number, which is typically RDJ followed by ten digits. The YATRI system is faster than scheduling via email.

Where can I find additional information about the Ds260?

Please, visit this website.

All my documents were delivered and verified by NVC. Do I still need to submit additional documents at the time of interview?

You must bring originals of all documents you submitted to NVC to the visa interview. You must also bring any documents NVC said were missing.  If your police certificates are expired, for example, you will need to obtain new ones before the interview.

Note: The Consular Officer may request other documents during the process of the immigrant visa interview if he deems it necessary.

What happens if some documents are missing while my case is pending?

Please avoid delays by providing all necessary documents by the date of your interview. Verify that all your information is accurate. Even minor spelling errors can cause processing delays.  After the interview, the visa applicant has one year to provide their missing documents. After one year, the application will be terminated.

If I could not get an appointment with a panel physician of my choice on the referral list before my interview, can my medical exam be pending during the interview?

All immigrant visa applicants, regardless of age, must have a medical exam completed in Brazil before the visa interview.

If I have an approved visa and my dependent family members are part of the same case, can my family members go to the United States before me?

Dependents can travel to the United States with the principal applicant or after the principal applicant. They cannot arrive earlier.

I am a legal permanent resident and do not intend to live in the United States, but would like to be able to visit some relatives and friends in the U.S. What should I do?

If you are a lawful permanent resident and wish to renounce your Lawful Permanent Resident status, please read the instructions here.

I am a legal permanent resident and a visit to Brazil ended up lasting for over a year. What should I do to return to the United States as a legal resident?

For more information, please go to the Green Card Holders page.

USCIS Guide to New Immigrants

Click here to access the USCIS Guide.