9 FAM 402.3 

(U) Officials and Employees of Foreign Governments and International Organizations – A, C-2, C-3, G, NATO Visas, and diplomatic type and official type visas

(CT:VISA-619;   07-09-2018)
(Office of Origin:  CA/VO/L/R)

9 FAM 402.3-1  (U) Statutory and Regulatory Authorities

9 FAM 402.3-1(A)  (U) Immigration and Nationality Act

(CT:VISA-78;   03-04-2016)

(U) INA 101(a)(15)(A) (8 U.S.C. 1101(a)(15)(A)); INA 101(a)(15)(C) (8 U.S.C. 1101(a)(15)(C)); INA 212(d)(8) (8 U.S.C. 1182(d)(8)); INA 101(a)(15)(G) (8 U.S.C. 1101(a)(15)(G)).

9 FAM 402.3-1(B)  (U) Code of Federal Regulations

(CT:VISA-78;   03-04-2016)

(U) 22 CFR 41.12; 22 CFR 41.21; 22 CFR 41.22; 22 CFR 41.23; 22 CFR 41.24; 22 CFR 41.25; 22 CFR 41.26; 22 CFR 41.27.

9 FAM 402.3-1(C)  (U) United States Code

(CT:VISA-78;   03-04-2016)

(U) 22 U.S.C. 288; 22 U.S.C. 611 - 613.

9 FAM 402.3-1(D)  (U) Public Law

(CT:VISA-78;   03-04-2016)

(U) Section 301 of the Visa Waiver Permanent Program Act (Public Law 106-396); Section 203 of the William Wilberforce Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act of 2008 (WWTVPRA) (Public Law 110-457).

9 FAM 402.3-2  (U) Overview

9 FAM 402.3-2(A)  (U) Foreign Government Officials; A Visas

(CT:VISA-78;   03-04-2016)

(U) Diplomats and other foreign government officials traveling to the United States to engage solely in official duties or activities on behalf of their national government must obtain A-1 or A-2 visas prior to entering the United States; they cannot travel using visitor visas or under the Visa Waiver Program (VWP).  With certain exceptions, such as the Head of State or Head of Government (and their immediate family) -- who qualifies for an A-1 visa regardless of the purpose of travel -- the applicant's position within his/her country’s government and purpose of travel determine whether he/she qualifies for an A-1 or A-2 visa.  See 9 FAM 402.3-5 below for details.

9 FAM 402.3-2(B)  (U) Officials in Transit; C Visas

(CT:VISA-362;   05-04-2017)

a. (U) C-2 Visas:  C-2 visas are appropriate for an alien who qualifies as a person entitled to pass in transit to and from the United Nations Headquarters District and foreign countries, under the provisions of paragraphs (3), (4), and (5) of section 11 of the Headquarters Agreement with United Nations. 

b. (U) C-3 Visas:  An accredited official of a foreign government proceeding in immediate and continuous transit through the United States on official business for that government is classifiable C-3, provided the foreign government grants similar privileges to officials of the United States. 

c.  (U) See 9 FAM 402.3-6 below for details.

9 FAM 402.3-2(C)  (U) Persons Associated with International Organizations; G Visas

(CT:VISA-362;   05-04-2017)

(U) Foreign government officials and employees traveling on assignment to their country's mission to a designated international organization or for temporary meetings of a designated international organization should obtain G-1, G-2, or G-3 visas; they cannot travel using visitor visas or under the VWP.  Officers and employees of designated international organizations should obtain G-4 visas; they cannot travel using visitor visas or under the VWP.  See 9 FAM 402.3-7(B) below for details.

9 FAM 402.3-2(D)  (U) North Atlantic Treaty Organization Representatives, Officials, and Employees; NATO Visas

(CT:VISA-362;   05-04-2017)

(U) NATO visas are regulated by 22 CFR 41.12 and 41.25.  NATO-1 through NATO-5 visas are appropriate for aliens seeking admission to the United States under the Agreement on the Status of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, national representatives to, and staff of NATO traveling to the United States on behalf of NATO (and their immediate family).  NATO-6 visas are appropriate for members of a civilian component accompanying a force entering in accordance with the provisions of the NATO Status of Forces Agreements or members of a civilian component attached to or employed by an Allied Headquarters under the Protocol on the Status of International Military Headquarters (and their dependents).  See 9 FAM 402.3-8 below for details.

9 FAM 402.3-2(E)  (U) Attendants, Servants, and Personal Employees of Officials; A-3, G-5 and NATO-7 Visas

(CT:VISA-362;   05-04-2017)

(U) Personal employees of an alien classified as an A-1 or A-2 (A-3 visas), G-1 through G-4 (G-5 visas), or NATO-1 through NATO-6 (NATO-7 visas) must obtain an A-3, G-5, or NATO-7 visa; they cannot travel using visitor visas or under the VWP. See 9 FAM 402.3-9 below for details.

9 FAM 402.3-3  (U) Classification codes

(CT:VISA-78;   03-04-2016)

(U) 22 CFR 41.12 identifies the following classifications symbols for officials and employees of foreign governments and international organizations in accordance with INA 101(a)(15)(A), INA 101(a)(15)(C), INA 101(a)(15)(G), and NATO agreements:

A1

Ambassador, Public Minister, Career Diplomat or Consular Officer, or Immediate Family

A2

Other Foreign Government Official or Employee or Immediate Family

A3

Attendant, Servant, or Personal Employee of A1 or A2, or Immediate Family

C2

Alien in Transit to United Nations Headquarters District Under Sec. 11.(3), (4), or (5) of the Headquarters Agreement

C3

Foreign Government Official, Immediate Family, Attendant, Servant or Personal Employee, in Transit

G1

Principal Resident Representative of Recognized Foreign Government to International Organization, Staff, or Immediate Family

G2

Other Representative of Recognized Foreign Member Government to International Organization, or Immediate Family

G3

Representative of Nonrecognized or Nonmember Foreign Government to International Organization, or Immediate Family

G4

International Organization Officer or Employee, or Immediate Family

G5

Attendant, Servant, or Personal Employee of G1 through G4, or Immediate Family

NATO1

Principal Permanent Representative of Member State to NATO (including any of its Subsidiary Bodies) Resident in the U.S. and Resident Members of Official Staff; Secretary General, Assistant Secretaries General, and Executive Secretary of NATO; Other Permanent NATO Officials of Similar Rank, or Immediate Family

NATO2

Other Representative of member state to NATO (including any of its Subsidiary Bodies) including Representatives, Advisers, and Technical Experts of Delegations, or Immediate Family; Dependents of Member of a Force Entering in Accordance with the Provisions of the NATO Status-of-Forces Agreement or in Accordance with the provisions of the “Protocol on the Status of International Military Headquarters”; Members of Such a Force if Issued Visas

NATO3

Official Clerical Staff Accompanying Representative of Member State to NATO (including any of its Subsidiary Bodies), or Immediate Family

NATO4

Official of NATO (Other Than Those Classifiable as NATO1), or Immediate Family

NATO5

Experts, Other Than NATO Officials Classifiable Under NATO4, Employed in Missions on Behalf of NATO, and their Dependents

NATO6

Member of a Civilian Component Accompanying a Force Entering in Accordance with the Provisions of the NATO Status-of-Forces Agreement; Member of a Civilian Component Attached to or Employed by an Allied Headquarters Under the “Protocol on the Status of International Military Headquarters” Set Up Pursuant to the North Atlantic Treaty; and their Dependents

NATO7

Attendant, Servant, or Personal Employee of NATO1, NATO2, NATO 3, NATO4, NATO5, and NATO6 Classes, or Immediate Family

9 FAM 402.3-4  (U) General Information

9 FAM 402.3-4(A)  (U) No Alternative to A or G Visa Classification

(CT:VISA-601;   06-07-2018)

(U) In accordance with 22 CFR 41.22(b), an alien who is entitled to classification under INA 101(a)(15)(A) must be issued an “A” visa, even if eligible for another nonimmigrant classification and must enter the United States in that status.  In accordance with 22 CFR 41.24(b)(4), an alien not classified under INA 101(a)(15)(A) but entitled to classification under INA section 101(a)(15)(G) shall be classified under INA 101(a)(15)(G), even if also eligible for another nonimmigrant classification and must enter the United States in that status.  This applies equally to entry under the Visa Waiver Program (VWP).  Foreign officials who intend to travel to the United States on official business must therefore, obtain the appropriate “A” or “G” visa prior to their entry, even if the official travel will occur within the ninety-day time limit.  Furthermore, persons who enter the United States under the VWP may not change or adjust status to another visa category in the United States.

9 FAM 402.3-4(B)  (U) Limited Ineligibilities Apply

(CT:VISA-601;   06-07-2018)

a. (U) A-1, A-2, G-1, G-2, G-3, G-4, NATO-1, NATO-2, NATO-3, NATO-4, and NATO-6 Applicants:  A-1, A-2, G-1 through G-4, and NATO-1 through NATO-6 visa applicants are subject to limited grounds of ineligibility (see 22 CFR 41.21(d)).  Of the INA 212(a) ineligibilities, only INA 212(a)(3)(A), INA 212(a)(3)(B), and INA 212(a)(3)(C) apply.

b. (U) C-2 and C-3 Applicants:  Of the INA 212(a) ineligibilities, only INA 212(a)(3)(A), INA 212(a)(3)(B), INA 212(a)(3)(C) and INA 212(a)(7)(B) apply to C-2 and C-3 applicants.

c.  (U) A-3, G-5, and NATO-7 Applicants:  A-3, G-5, and NATO-7 applicants are subject to all of the INA 212(a) ineligibilities and INA 214(b).

d. (U) If an applicant appears to be ineligible on grounds other than INA 212(a), send an AO to CA/VO/L/A.  Prior to issuing an A, C-2, C-3, G or NATO visa to an applicant who would otherwise be ineligible under INA 212(a)(2)(E) if such applicant were applying for a visa other than an A-1, A-2, C-2, C-3, G-1, G-2, G-3, G-4, or NATO-1 through NATO-6 nonimmigrant visa, you must submit an advisory opinion to CA/VO/L/A.  (See 9 FAM 302.3-7(C).)

e. Unavailable

9 FAM 402.3-4(C)  (U) Issuing Visas Only Upon Appropriate Request and In Appropriate Travel Document

(CT:VISA-601;   06-07-2018)

a. (U) Ordinarily, you may issue a visa in the A, C-2, C-3, G, or NATO categories only upon receipt of a note from the appropriate foreign office, mission, international organization, or NATO authority.  You must scan the note into the application record in the nonimmigrant visa (NIV) system.

b. (U) The note should include the following information concerning the principal applicant:

(1)  (U) Name and date of birth;

(2)  (U) Position and title;

(3)  (U) Place of assignment or visit;

(4)  (U) Purpose of travel;

(5)  (U) Brief description of duties;

(6)  (U) Travel date;

(7)  (U) Anticipated length of stay or tour of duty in the United States; and

(8)  (U) The names, relationships, and dates of birth of any dependents and other members of household who will be accompanying or joining the principal.

c.  (U) For any non-TDY foreign government official or employee who will serve at a diplomatic or consular mission (including a mission to an international organization) or at a miscellaneous foreign government office in the United States for 90 days or more, the diplomatic note should be issued by the sending government’s foreign ministry, and not by a mission or miscellaneous foreign government office in the United States.  In the case of a career official currently assigned outside of the United States, you may accept a note from the embassy or consulate outside the United States where the official is currently assigned, provided that the note certifies that the foreign ministry requests the visa application.

d. (U) In emergency situations, you may issue a visa upon the oral request of a competent foreign authority, international organization, or NATO.  You should make a note in the nonimmigrant visa (NIV) system regarding the request (e.g., name and position of requester, date of request, etc.).  You should also solicit a written confirmation from the appropriate foreign office, international organization, or NATO authority.  Under unusual circumstances, if you issue a visa based on an incomplete note, you should solicit the missing information from the appropriate foreign office, international organization, or NATO authority as soon as possible.

    Note: Requests for World Bank employees should be received by Post via efax from World Bank Headquarters (HRVisa@worldbank.org).

e. (U) An application for an “A” visa should not be accepted for an alien who is not a resident of the consular district without the requisite diplomatic note, unless the alien is a current head of state or head of government whose eligibility for A-1 status is not in question.

f.  (U) Travel Documents:  An A, C-2, C-3, G, or NATO visa must only be placed in a travel document that meets the definition of a “passport” as defined in INA 101(a)(30)In addition to any passport which has been determined to fulfill the requirements of a “passport” and that is referenced in the appropriate reciprocity schedule, the Department also accepts the following travel documents for issuance of A, C-2, C-3, G, or NATO visas, as described below:

(1)  (U) European Union Laissez-Passer (EULP):  The EULP is a bound booklet in passport format. The cover is dark blue in color and bears the gold embossed seal of the European Union (EU).  Only an official type A-1, A-2, or G-3 visa may be placed in an EULP.  The bearer must present a Form DS-160, Online Nonimmigrant Visa Application, and a photograph for visa in connection with the EULP.   (See 9 FAM 403.3-4(A) for photograph requirements.)  You must receive written confirmation from the appropriate EU office indicating that the applicant is traveling on official EU business.  The period of visa validity should correspond with the reciprocity schedule of the applicant’s country of nationality as indicated in the EULP, but may not exceed the validity of the EULP.  (See also 9 FAM 403.9-3(A)(3).)

(2)  (U) United Nations Laissez-Passer (UNLP):  Only a G-4 visa may be placed in a UNLP.  See 9 FAM 402.3-7(D)(6).

    Note: Travel documents issued by international organizations (other than the EU and United Nations as listed above) do not meet the definition of a “passport” as defined in INA 101(a)(30)Therefore, visas must not be placed in these travel documents.  Such travel documents include, but are not limited to, the travel documents issued by the Organization of American States (OAS) (see 9 FAM 402.3-7(E)(2)), the World Bank, and INTERPOL.  (See also 9 FAM 403.9-3(A)(2).)

9 FAM 402.3-4(D)  (U) Confirmation of Status; Questionable Application

(CT:VISA-78;   03-04-2016)

(U) If a foreign mission, or an individual attached to such a mission, has presented a diplomatic note which fraudulently portrays an applicant qualifying for “A” visa status, you may request that the U.S. mission in the applicant’s country confirm his or her diplomatic status and the reason for travel.  This should be done in situations where fraud concerns warrant a delay in processing and involvement of another U.S. mission.

9 FAM 402.3-4(E)  (U) Waiver of Personal Appearance; Interviews

(CT:VISA-362;   05-04-2017)

a. (U) Under the provisions of 22 CFR 41.102(a)(2) and 22 CFR 41.102(b)(3), you are authorized to waive personal appearances for A-1, A-2, C-2, C-3, G-1 through G-4, and NATO-1 through NATO-6 aliens, as well as applicants for diplomatic type or official type visas.  However, in such cases, pursuant to 22 CFR 41.103(a)(3) even if a personal appearance of a visa applicant is waived, the filing of an application is not waived.  Waiver of personal appearance does not automatically include waiver of fingerprints; these are two separate requirements.  Only certain classes of nonimmigrants are exempt from fingerprinting requirements under 9 FAM 303.7-4(B)A-1, A-2, C-3, G-1, G-2, G-3, G-4, and NATO-1 through NATO-6 visa applicants are exempt from fingerprint requirements.  Qualification for a diplomatic type or official type visa (of any other nonimmigrant visa classification) does not provide waiver or exemption from fingerprinting requirements.  (See 9 FAM 303.7-4(B) for additional information regarding fingerprint waiver or exemption.)

b. (U) Normally posts should waive the personal interview requirement for bona fide A-1 and A-2 visa applicants who are citizens of, or accredited to, the host country.  However, posts may wish to interview an individual if a review of the application and supporting documentation raises questions concerning the applicant’s eligibility for “A” visa status.  Posts may also wish to interview non-resident “A” visa applicants, particularly those who could have applied for a visa in their home country and who do not have a clear reason for seeking their visa elsewhere.  If the personal interview is waived for such applicants, posts should confirm that the applicant is physically present in the consular district before accepting the application.

9 FAM 402.3-4(F)  (U) No Fees

(CT:VISA-78;   03-04-2016)

(U) There are no machine-readable visa (MRV) (processing) fees or reciprocity fees for A-1, A-2, C-2, C-3, G-1 through G-4, or NATO-1 through NATO-6 applicants.  These exemptions also apply to their domestic and personal employees in the A-3, G-5, or NATO-7 visa categories.  There is also no fee for a B-1 visa issued to individuals assigned, for any length of time, to an official observer mission to the United Nations.  Moreover, aliens issued a diplomatic type visa, as described in 9 FAM 402.3-10(C)(4) below are exempt from all visa processing and reciprocity fees, irrespective of whether the travel is official or non-official.  This fee exemption is not accorded to recipients of official type visas under 9 FAM 402.3-10(D)(2) below (unless the recipient qualifies for a fee exemption on some other basis, such as receiving a visa in one of the A, G, or NATO visa classifications referenced above).

9 FAM 402.3-4(G)  (U) Visa Validity - Full Validity vs. Limited Validity

(CT:VISA-485;   01-09-2018)

a. (U) General Guidance:  General guidance relating to visa validity can be found in 9 FAM 403.9-4(B)Post should follow the general guidance except as provided in this section for certain A, C, G, or NATO visa applicants. 

b. (U) A-1 and A-2 Visas:  Foreign diplomats who qualify for A-1 or A-2 status should be issued the full validity allowed by reciprocity.  In some instances, however, due to fraud concerns, prior abuse of “A” visas, and/or the purpose of travel, a limited visa may be justified.  For example, a government employee who will visit the United States on a one-time basis for a limited period of time does not necessarily require a multi-year visa in order to conduct his or her official duties.

c.  (U) A-3, G-5, and NATO-7:  See 9 FAM 402.3-9(B)(7) below regarding visa validity for A-3, G-5, and NATO-7 visas.  

9 FAM 402.3-4(H)  (U) Visa Annotations

(CT:VISA-601;   06-07-2018)

(U) You should annotate A, C-2, C-3, G, and NATO visas.  Annotations for each visa classification should follow the guidance provided below. 

(1)  (U) Foreign Government Officials: 

(a)  (U) You should annotate the visa of a principal applicant to reflect his or her place of employment.  For example:

      JOHN DOE, EMBASSY OF Z
WASHINGTON, DC

(b)  (U) Visa annotations for foreign government officials assigned to a mission to a designated international organization should reflect the mission, the IO with which it is associated, and the location.  For example:

      JOHN DOE, PERMANENT MISSION OF Z TO UN
NEW YORK, NY

(2)  (U) Dependents of Foreign Government Officials:  You should annotate the visa of a dependent of a foreign government official to reflect the principal applicant's name and place of employment.

      PRINCIPAL APPLICANT: JOHN DOE, EMBASSY OF Z
WASHINGTON, DC

(3)  (U) International Organization Officials and Employees:  You should annotate the visa of a principal applicant to reflect his or her place of employment.  For example: 

      JANE DOE, NAME OF DESIGNATED IO
NEW YORK, NY

(4)  (U) Dependents of International Organization Officials and Employees: You should annotate the visa of a dependent of an international organization official or employee to reflect the principal applicant's name and place of employment.

      PRINCIPAL APPLICANT: JANE DOE, NAME OF DESIGNATED IO
NEW YORK, NY

(5)  (U) Temporary Duty (TDY) Travel:  

(a)  (U) You should include "TDY" (for temporary duty) in the annotation field of a machine readable visa (MRV) issued to the recipient of an A or G visa who is coming to the United States for assignments of less than 90 days.  You should include the sending or receiving organization or government in the annotation.  For example:

      JOHN DOE, CONSULATE GENERAL OF Z
(TDY)

(b)  (U) The request for an A or G visa must clearly specify that the official is coming for a temporary assignment of less than 90 days, and such information should be included in the note received pursuant to 9 FAM 402.3-4(C) above.  Absent this information, you are to seek clarification about the length of the assignment from the authorities concerned.

(6)  (U) A-2 TDY Visas for Antiterrorism Assistance Training (ATA):  

(a)  (U) The validity and duration of an A-2 visa issued to participants in the Diplomatic Security’s Office of Antiterrorism Assistance (ATA) training courses must be limited to a single entry and limited to the timeframe of the specific course in which the alien is to participate and reasonable transportation time domestically to and from the training site.  The visa should be annotated as: “ATA training, commencing on (date) and ending on (date).”

(b)  (U) With written consent of the sending government and the concurrence of both the Consular Section Chief and the Regional Security Officer (RSO), the annotation on an A-2 visa issued to an ATA participant may also include identification of a specific period of time, of up to 30 days after the training period, that the alien intends to remain in the United States for personal reasons.

(7)  (U) A-3, G-5, and NATO-7 Visas:  Posts are to endorse A-3, G-5, and NATO-7 visas issued to attendants, servants, and personal employees of aliens classified A-1 or A-2 (A-3 visa), G-1 through G-4 (G-5 visa), or NATO-1 through NATO-6 (NATO-7 visa).  The notation is to be placed in the annotation field of the MRV and is to contain the name of the principal alien and his/her place of employment.  In addition to the applicant’s information, you must also indicate the employer’s nationality using the abbreviations in 9 FAM 102.5-2.  For example, the annotation for an A-3 domestic worker hired by the Italian Consul General in New York should read:

      EMP: Luigi Marinara, ITLY

      Consul General

      Italian Consulate General

      New York, NY

(8)  (U) Privatized INTELSAT Employees:  In addition to the standard annotation for G-4 visas, the G-4 visas issued to qualifying privatized INTELSAT officers and/or employees and their immediate family should include the following additional line at the end of the annotation:

      “ISSUED PURSUANT TO SECTION 301 OF Public Law 106-396.”

(9)  (U) G-4 for Transit Purposes:  Officers and employees of designated international organizations who are not assigned in the United States may be accorded G-4 classification if they desire to transit the United States.  Posts must endorse G‑4 visas issued to such applicants who are generally on, or returning from home leave, as follows:

          VALID FOR IMMEDIATE AND CONTINUOUS TRANSIT ONLY

      NOTE:  (U) Such an applicant who expects to spend time in the United States for personal business or pleasure must also possess a “B” visa.

(10) (U) Permanent Observer Missions at the United Nations:

(a)  (U) Principal Applicants:  You must annotate B-1 visas for principal applicants at Permanent Observer Missions at the United Nations to reflect their places of employment.  For example:

      JOHN DOE
OBSERVER MISSION TO THE UNITED NATIONS
(NAME OF ORGANIZATION), NEW YORK, NY

(b)  (U) Dependents: 

      PRINCIPAL APPLICANT:  JOHN DOE
UNITED NATIONS OBSERVER MISSION
(NAME OF ORGANIZATION), WASHINGTON, DC

9 FAM 402.3-4(I)  (U) Other Procedural Matters for A, G, and NATO Visas

9 FAM 402.3-4(I)(1)  (U) Designated Ports of Entry (POE) for Certain Diplomatic and International Organization Personnel

(CT:VISA-78;   03-04-2016)

(U) See the Visa Reciprocity and Country Documents Schedule under country concerned.

9 FAM 402.3-4(I)(2)  Unavailable

(CT:VISA-78;   03-04-2016)

Unavailable

9 FAM 402.3-4(I)(3)  (U) Renewal of A, G, and NATO Visas

(CT:VISA-601;   06-07-2018)

a. (U) Aliens and their dependents who are in the United States in the A, G, or NATO visa category, except A-3, G-5, and NATO-7 aliens (see 9 FAM 402.3-4(I)(5) below) may have their visa(s) renewed by CA/VO/DO/DL in the Department.  For information on visa renewal requirements, the public may reference the information on travel.state.gov, or may reach out to CA/VO/DO/DL at diplomaticvisas@state.gov or by telephone at (202) 485-7681, Monday through Friday, excluding holidays, between the hours of 2:00 p.m. and 3:00 p.m. (Eastern Time).

b. (U) Aliens with the above visa classifications who need visas to be reissued in Washington, D.C., may deliver their passports with required documents to the Diplomatic Reception Desk in SA-17, 600 19th Street, N.W., Washington D.C., 20006, between 10:30 a.m. and 11:30 a.m. (Eastern Time), Monday through Friday, excluding holidays.  The envelope should be clearly marked to indicate “Visa Reissuance.”

c.  (U) G visas (except G-5) for applicants who are part of the United Nations (UN) community may be processed through the U.S. Mission to the UN in New York, Monday through Friday, excluding U.S. holidays, between 9:00 a.m. and 5:30 p.m. (Eastern Time).

9 FAM 402.3-4(I)(4)  (U) Change of Status to A or G in the United States 

(CT:VISA-601;   06-07-2018)

(U) An alien in the United States who accepts employment with a diplomatic mission or an international organization (IO), or who changes employment from one to another requiring a different visa classification, must first obtain a change of status prior to commencing his or her employment with that particular mission or IO.  Applicants requesting a change of status to either the A or G category should submit Form I-566, Interagency Record of Request -- A, G or NATO Dependent Employment Authorization or Change/Adjustment to/from A, G or NATO Status, to the Office of Foreign Missions (OFM).  Upon receipt of the certified Form I-566 from OFM, the diplomatic mission or international organization should then contact CA/VO/DO/DL at (202) 485-7681, Monday through Friday (excluding holidays), between the hours of 2:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. (Eastern Time), for information on specific documentation to submit.  Information on the process can also be found online at travel.state.gov. 

9 FAM 402.3-4(I)(5)  (U) A-3 and G-5 Revalidations in the United States

(CT:VISA-362;   05-04-2017)

a. (U) CA/VO/DO/DL and the United States Mission to the United Nations (USUN) no longer adjudicate A-3 or G-5 visa applications in the United States.  Applicants must apply for an A-3 or G-5 visa at a U.S. consular office abroad.

b. (U) A-3 and G-5 visa holders whose visas have expired, but who remain in status and continue to work for the same employer for which their A-3 or G-5 visa was issued, do not need to apply for new visas while they remain in the United States.

9 FAM 402.3-4(I)(6)  (U) Departure Required for Issuance of A or G Visa Abroad

(CT:VISA-601;   06-07-2018)

a. (U) DHS may require aliens who entered the United States in “B” status to apply for the appropriate A or G visa at a U.S. embassy or consulate abroad and may not allow such aliens to seek a change of status in the United States.  If this is the case, the foreign mission where the applicant is to be employed should contact the nonimmigrant visa section of the U.S consular office where the applicant will apply for the visa to make the necessary arrangements for application for an A or G visa.

b. (U) A-1, A-2, G-1, G-2, G-3, and G-4 visa applicants who have overstayed their previous nonimmigrant status in the United States are not subject to INA 222(g) and may apply for a visa at a post other than in their home country. Additionally, DHS will not change the status of an alien who enters the United States under the Visa Waiver Program (VWP).

c.  Unavailable

9 FAM 402.3-4(J)  (U) Immediate Family of Foreign Government Officials or Representatives, International Organization Officers and Employees, and Certain NATO Personnel

9 FAM 402.3-4(J)(1)  (U) Immediate Family Members Also Classifiable A or G 

(CT:VISA-362;   05-04-2017)

a. (U) In accordance with 22 CFR 41.22(b), an alien who is entitled to classification under INA 101(a)(15)(A) must be issued an "A" visa, even if eligible for another nonimmigrant classification and must enter the United States in that status.  Therefore, immediate family members of the principal alien must also receive "A" visas, unless the family member is independently classifiable as a principal alien under INA 101(a)(15)(G) (e.g., tandem couples). 

b. (U) In accordance with 22 CFR 41.24(b)(4), an alien who is not entitled to an "A" visa, but who is entitled to classification under INA 101(a)(15)(G) must be issued a "G" visa, even if eligible for another nonimmigrant classification and must enter the United States in that status.  Therefore, immediate family members of the principal alien must also receive "G" visas.  If an immediate family member obtains employment once in the United States which would normally fall under “A” classification, such immediate family member may continue to be classifiable "G" and is not required to seek a change of status in the United States to “A” nonimmigrant status or apply for a new “A” visa abroad.

c.  (U) NATO Immediate Family Members/Dependents:  NATO-1, NATO-2 (Limited to: Other Representative of a member state to NATO (including any of its Subsidiary Bodies) including Representatives, Advisers, and Technical Experts of Delegations, or Immediate Family), NATO-3, NATO-4, and NATO-7 visa classifications include “immediate family.”  Eligible immediate family members within these classifications should also receive the same NATO visa classification as the principal NATO visa holder/applicant. NATO-2 (Limited to: Dependents of a Member of a Force Entering in Accordance with the Provisions of the NATO Status-of-Forces Agreement or in Accordance with the provisions of the “Protocol on the Status of International Military Headquarters”; Members of Such a Force if Issued Visas), NATO-5, and NATO-6 visa classifications include “dependents”, which are defined in the relevant NATO agreement.  (See 9 FAM 402.3-8 below.)

9 FAM 402.3-4(J)(2)  (U) Spouse

(CT:VISA-262;   12-05-2016)

(U) The term “immediate family” includes the spouse of the principal alien, who is not a member of some other household and who will reside regularly in the household of the principal alien.

9 FAM 402.3-4(J)(3)  (U) Unmarried Sons and Daughters

(CT:VISA-262;   12-05-2016)

a. (U) The term “immediate family” includes unmarried legal sons and daughters of the principal alien, who are not members of some other household and who will reside regularly in the household of the principal alien, provided that such unmarried sons and daughters are:

(1)  (U) Under the age of 21; or

(2)  (U) Under the age of 23 and in full-time attendance as students at post-secondary educational institutions.

b. (U) Such legal sons and daughters need not previously have qualified as a “child” as defined in INA 101(b)(1).  For example: children who are subject to a full and final adoption by the principal applicant are considered immediate family members and do not need to meet the two-year requirement of INA 101(b)(1)(E), the orphan definition of INA 101(b)(1)(F) or INA 101(b)(1)(G)

c.  (U) If a son or daughter does not qualify under this section, he/she may still qualify as immediate family under "Other Members of Household" below.

9 FAM 402.3-4(J)(4)  (U) Other Members of the Principal Alien’s Household

(CT:VISA-262;   12-05-2016)

a. (U) The term "immediate family" may also include, upon individual authorization from the Department (see paragraph d below), any other alien who:

(1)  (U) will reside regularly in the household of the principal alien;

(2)  (U) is not a member of some other household; and

(3)  (U) is recognized as an immediate family member of the principal alien by the sending government or designated International Organization (IO), as demonstrated by eligibility for rights and benefits, such as the issuance of a diplomatic or official passport or other similar documentation, or travel or other allowances.

b. (U) Aliens who may qualify for immediate family status on this basis include:  any other relative, by blood, marriage, or adoption, of the principal alien or his/her spouse; a same-sex domestic partner; and a relative by blood, marriage, or adoption of the same-sex domestic partner.  The term "domestic partner" for the purpose of this section means a same-sex domestic partner.

c.  (U) Reciprocal Treatment of Same-Sex Domestic Partners:  Before you issue a derivative visa in an A or G classification, other than a G-4 visa to a same-sex domestic partner of an IO officer or employee, you must confirm that the sending state would provide reciprocal treatment to same-sex domestic partners of U.S. Mission members. 

d. (U) Department Authorization:  You may consider an individual to be authorized by the Department of State as a member of the "immediate family" in accordance with 22 CFR 41.21(a)(3)(iii)(D) in all cases in which you have made a favorable determination on the alien's application.

e. (U) Notification to the Department:  You do not need to seek Departmental authorization to issue a visa when you determine that a close relative qualifies as immediate family of the principal alien.  Likewise, you may deny such derivative status without referring the case to the Department.  If you are unable to confirm reciprocal treatment (see paragraph c above) or if significant foreign policy issues or public interest exist, you may refer the case to the Department (CA/VO/L/A) for an advisory opinion (AO).  In any request for an AO for an individual case involving significant foreign policy issues or public interest, address how the policy issues or public interest relate to the visa application.

9 FAM 402.3-4(J)(5)  (U) Aliens Who Will Reside Regularly in Household of Principal Alien

(CT:VISA-601;   06-07-2018)

(U) An alien who resides regularly in the household of the principal alien, but is absent from the household for a large part of the year while attending a boarding school or college is still considered to be regularly residing in the household of the principal alien.

9 FAM 402.3-4(J)(6)  (U) Aliens Who Are Members of Some Other Household

(CT:VISA-262;   12-05-2016)

a. (U) An alien who has been a member of a household other than the household of the principal alien would not normally be included within the "immediate family" of the principal alien as that term is defined in 22 CFR 41.21(a)(3), regardless of other circumstances.  Thus a nephew of college age who has resided in the household of the principal alien's sister and brother-in-law would not qualify as an immediate relative of the principal alien simply to join the principal alien's household with the intention of attending college in the United States.  F-1 classification under sponsorship of the principal alien might be appropriate in such a situation.

b. (U) However, the fact that an alien has been, even in the recent past, a member of some other household does not preclude a finding that, at the time of visa application, the applicant is a member of the household of the principal alien.  For example, a recently widowed, divorced or aging parent may have closed a former household with the intention of becoming part of the principal alien's household.  This could also occur because, due to advanced age or infirmity, the parent has experienced significant difficulty in maintaining his or her own household.  The test in adjudicating these cases is whether the applicant, for reasons of age, health, or change in circumstances, has a compelling reason to join the household of the principal alien rather than maintain or reestablish an independent household. 

c.  (U) If you are satisfied that the applicant is currently a member of the principal alien's household, a visa may be issued without submitting an AO to the Department. 

9 FAM 402.3-4(J)(7)  (U) Immediate Family of Foreign Official Who has Requested Status of Permanent Resident

(CT:VISA-262;   12-05-2016)

a. (U) An alien who is a member of the immediate family of a principal alien classifiable as A-2, or G-1 through G-4 (other than diplomatic agents), may receive that classification even when the principal alien has requested permission to obtain or retain the status of permanent resident under INA 247(b).  The principal alien must have waived his and/or her rights, privileges, exemptions, and immunities by filing Form I-508 with USCIS.

b. (U) A LPR cannot serve as a diplomatic agent in the United States.  You should contact CA/VO/L/A for any questions regarding immediate family members of an LPR seeking an A-1 or G visa (other than a G-4 visa). 

9 FAM 402.3-4(J)(8)  (U) Individuals Who Do Not Qualify as Immediate Family

(CT:VISA-601;   06-07-2018)

(U)  Individuals who do not qualify as immediate family, as described above, may otherwise potentially qualify for a B-2 visa (see 9 FAM 402.2-4(B)(5)) or some other nonimmigrant visa based on their purpose of travel.  In the case of multiple spouses, see 9 FAM 302.12-2(B)(5).

9 FAM 402.3-5  (U) Foreign Government Officials – A Visas

9 FAM 402.3-5(A)  (U) Statutory and Regulatory Authority

9 FAM 402.3-5(A)(1)  (U) Immigration and Nationality Act

(CT:VISA-78;   03-04-2016)

(U) INA 101(a)(15)(A) (8 U.S.C. 1101(a)(15)(A).

9 FAM 402.3-5(A)(2)  (U) Code of Federal Regulations

(CT:VISA-78;   03-04-2016)

(U) 22 CFR 41.21; 22 CFR 41.22.

9 FAM 402.3-5(B)  (U) General Information on A Visa Classification

9 FAM 402.3-5(B)(1)  (U) Importance of “A” Visas

(CT:VISA-362;   05-04-2017)

(U) A-1 and A-2 visas are issued to aliens coming to the United States to perform diplomatic and official business of a governmental nature.  Errors made in the issuance or refusal of an “A” visa could cause embarrassment for the U.S. Government and may have serious consequences.  You should ensure that “A” visa applications are adjudicated accurately and promptly.  If you have any questions, contact CA/VO/L/A. 

9 FAM 402.3-5(B)(2)  (U) A Visa Classification vs. Diplomatic Type Visas

(CT:VISA-362;   05-04-2017)

a. (U) As described in 9 FAM 402.3-10(B), “A” visa classification should not be confused with the issuance of “diplomatic” type visas; visa classification is distinct from visa type (regular, official, or diplomatic).  Heads of state or heads of government (and their immediate family members) are always accorded A-1 visa status regardless of their purpose of travel.  Otherwise, visa classification is determined by the purpose of entry and the intended official duties, and not by the official’s title, rank, or type of passport (diplomatic, official, or regular) which he or she is carrying.  However, the type of passport is relevant for issuance of a diplomatic type visa as 22 CFR 41.26 requires the applicant possess a diplomatic passport or the equivalent of a diplomatic passport to qualify for a diplomatic type visa (regardless of visa classification).

b. (U) Foreign officials coming to the United States on official business on behalf of their government, whether on permanent assignment or temporary duty (TDY), are accorded “A” status, as are their immediate family members.  Foreign officials coming to perform non-governmental functions of a commercial or competitive nature do not qualify for A-1 or A-2 visas, but may fall into the “B”, “E”, or “L” categories, and would be issued diplomatic type visas in those categories if qualified.

c.  (U) National, Not Local Level:  “A” visa status only pertains to officials who are traveling to the United States on behalf of their national government, and the immediate family of such officials.  Local government officials who intend to come to the United States exclusively on behalf of their state, province, borough, or other local political entity would not qualify for “A” visa status.  A foreign official who is assigned to a third country (or the immediate family of such foreign official) and who wishes to visit and/or vacation in the United States would not qualify for “A” visa status.  Based on the applicant’s reason for coming to the United States (vacation or visit), he or she may be issued a diplomatic type or official type B-2 visa if qualified.

9 FAM 402.3-5(B)(3)  (U) Exemptions From Ineligibility Provisions for A-1 and A-2 Visa Classes

(CT:VISA-362;   05-04-2017)

a. (U) A-1 and A-2 visa applicants are subject to limited grounds of ineligibility.  Of the INA 212(a) ineligibilities, only INA 212(a)(3)(A), INA 212(a)(3)(B), and INA 212(a)(3)(C) apply.  Thus, an applicant who demonstrates that he or she is qualified for A-1 or A-2 visa status may not be refused as an intending immigrant or on grounds of health, criminal activities, or prior visa violations.  If an applicant appears to be ineligible on grounds other than INA 212(a), send an AO to CA/VO/L/A.  Prior to issuing an A -1 or A-2 visa to an applicant who would otherwise be ineligible under INA 212(a)(2)(E) if such applicant were applying for a visa other than an A-1 or A-2 visa, you must submit an advisory opinion to CA/VO/L/A.  (See 9 FAM 302.3-7(C).)

b. Unavailable

c.  (U) In exempting class A-1 foreign government officials from the provisions of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) relating to aliens ineligible to receive visas, Congress acted on the assumption that to do otherwise might infringe upon the constitutional prerogative of the President to receive ambassadors and other public ministers (Article II, Section 3 of the Constitution).  The legislative history underlying the distinctions made in the INA between A-1 and A-2 classes of foreign government officials offers some assistance in determining legislative intent.  Committee Report No. 1365 which accompanied House Report No. 5678, 82nd Congress contains the following paragraph on page 34.

Ambassadors, public ministers, and career diplomatic and consular officers who have been accredited by foreign governments recognized de jure by the United States and accepted by the President or the Secretary of State, and members of their immediate families, are exempted from all provisions relating to the exclusion and deportation of aliens generally, except those provisions relating to reasonable requirements of passport and visas as means of identification and documentation.  In view of constitutional limitations, such aliens may be excluded on grounds of public safety only under such regulations as may be deemed necessary by the President.

d. (U) The President has not issued a directive to date applying the provisions of INA 212(a)(3)(A), INA 212(a)(3)(B), and INA 212(a)(3)(C) to aliens within the A-1 classification (See INA 102(1)).

9 FAM 402.3-5(C)  (U) Aliens Entitled to A-1 Classification

(CT:VISA-78;   03-04-2016)

(U) The following aliens are entitled to A-1 nonimmigrant classification under INA 101(a)(15)(A)(i).

9 FAM 402.3-5(C)(1)  (U) Alien Head of State or Government

(CT:VISA-362;   05-04-2017)

(U) An alien holding the position of head of state or head of government in a foreign government recognized de jure by the United States is classifiable as A-1 regardless of purpose of travel.  The immediate family members of such head of state or head of government are also classifiable as A-1 regardless of purpose of travel.  You must not issue a visa other than an A-1 to the current head of state or head of government (and their qualifying immediate family members). 

9 FAM 402.3-5(C)(2)  (U) Alien Accredited by Foreign Government as Officer at Diplomatic or Consular Post

(CT:VISA-78;   03-04-2016)

a. (U) An alien duly accredited by a foreign government recognized de jure by the United States as an officer of a permanent diplomatic mission or consular post established in the United States with the consent of the Department, who seeks to enter the United States solely for the purpose of performing duties appropriately performed by such an officer.  (Officers of diplomatic missions usually have the title of “Ambassador,” “Minister,” “Counselor,” “Secretary,” or “Attaché” such as military, commercial, financial, agriculture, or scientific; and those of consular posts, “Consul General,” "Deputy Consul General," “Consul,” "Deputy Consul," "Consular Agent," or “Vice Consul.”)  (See 9 FAM 402.3-5(F), Honorary Consul, below.)

b. (U) Such alien should be at least 21 years old at the time of entry into the United States, is expected to perform services for the foreign government on an essentially full-time basis (at least 35 hours per week), and is expected to reside in the metropolitan area of the diplomatic mission or consular post where the individual will be serving.

c.  (U) De jure recognition is not synonymous with diplomatic relations, and de jure recognition may continue even though diplomatic relations have been severed.  Consequently, an A-1 visa may be issued to an alien who seeks to enter the United States for the purpose of performing official duties for a government which has severed diplomatic relations with the United States, provided that:

(1)  (U) The United States has recognized that government de jure prior to severance of diplomatic relations;

(2)  (U) There is a continuing status of de jure recognition; and

(3)  (U) There is a reciprocal exchange of representatives between the United States and that government.  An A-1 classification for such an alien is warranted even if, owing to the absence of diplomatic relations, the individual will function under the aegis of the embassy of a third country protecting power.

(4)  (U) Post has consulted with CA/VO/L/A regarding the application.

9 FAM 402.3-5(C)(3)  (U) Certain Alien Officials of Foreign Governments

(CT:VISA-78;   03-04-2016)

(U) An alien seeking to enter the United States to perform official duties for a government recognized de jure by the United States who holds any of the following positions in that government:

(1)  (U) A position corresponding to that of a member of the U.S. Cabinet;

(2)  (U) The presiding officer of a national legislative body; or

(3)  (U) A member of the highest judicial tribunal.

9 FAM 402.3-5(C)(4)  (U) Immediate Family of Alien Classifiable A-1

(CT:VISA-362;   05-04-2017)

(U) See 22 CFR 41.21(a)(3) and 9 FAM 402.3-4(J), Immediate Family of Foreign Government and International Organization Officials and Employees.  Qualifying immediate family members of an alien classifiable as A-1 are also classifiable as A-1. 

9 FAM 402.3-5(C)(5)  (U) Career Courier

(CT:VISA-78;   03-04-2016)

(U) See 22 CFR 41.22(h)(1).

9 FAM 402.3-5(D)  (U) Aliens Entitled to A-2 Classification

(CT:VISA-78;   03-04-2016)

(U) The following aliens are entitled to A-2 nonimmigrant classification under INA 101(a)(15)(A)(ii).

9 FAM 402.3-5(D)(1)  (U) Alien Accredited by Foreign Government as Employee at Diplomatic or Consular Post

(CT:VISA-362;   05-04-2017)

a. (U) An alien duly accredited by a foreign government recognized de jure by the United States who seeks to enter the United States solely to serve as an employee of a permanent diplomatic mission or consular post established in the United States by that government, who is not within any of the categories entitled to A-1 classification, and whose duties are those normally performed by employees of permanent diplomatic missions or consular posts established in the United States.  Accordingly, A-2 visas are generally appropriate for foreign government officials or employees not holding a diplomatic rank or a consular officer title, and instead working essentially full-time as administrative and technical staff and service staff at embassies, as consular employees and service staff at consulates, or as qualifying miscellaneous foreign government office personnel.  Such alien is expected to perform services for the foreign government on an essentially full-time basis (at least 35 hours per week) and to reside in the metropolitan area of the mission where the individual will be serving. 

b. (U) You must pay close attention to the differences between A-2 service staff and A-3 domestic workers, and be prepared to ask for detailed descriptions of the duties to be performed and/or request an interview to determine proper visa classification.  (Note: These standards also apply to G visa applicants (G-1 service staff and G-5 domestic workers).  These applicants may be considered either service staff (A-2), personal attendants (A-3), or domestic workers (A-3), depending on the facts of their employment and duties.  An applicant may qualify for an A-2 visa as service staff if he/she is engaged in certain duties owed to the sending government in furtherance of the official functions of the mission pertaining to the maintenance of the residence and representational duties performed at the residence of the head of a diplomatic mission or the principal officer of a consular post (or a permanent representative to the UN for G-1 visa applicants).  In contrast, “attendants” are generally paid from the funds of the sending government (or IO for some G-5 visa applicants) and are accompanying or following-to-join a principal to whom a duty of service is owed in his/her personal capacity; they are therefore classifiable as A-3.  Similar to attendants, servants and other personal employees employed by the principal in a domestic or personal capacity – such as to cook, clean, or take care of children – in the private residence of a mission member are classifiable as A-3.  These applicants do not qualify for A-2 visas even if the sending government pays the domestic worker.  Please contact CA/VO/L/A or CA/VO/DO/DL if you have any questions or concerns about an applicant’s eligibility for an A-2 (or G-1) visa as service staff.

c.  (U) Interns:  Interns applying for a visa to work at an embassy, consulate, or miscellaneous foreign government office (MFGO) may qualify for an A-2 visa if the intern's visa application is accompanied by a diplomatic note that contains either (1) an express statement that the mission considers the applicant its employee during the internship, or (2) an acknowledgement that the mission will exercise ultimate authority over the continuation of the intern's assignment and the control and direction of the official duties to be performed for the duration of the intern's U.S. assignment.  The duration of the internship and status as paid/unpaid are not relevant for classifying an intern as an A-2.  

9 FAM 402.3-5(D)(2)  (U) Alien Seeking to Perform Official Duties for Foreign Government

(CT:VISA-362;   05-04-2017)

a. (U) An alien holding an official position with a foreign government recognized de jure by the United States who seeks to enter the United States pursuant to orders or instructions from such government, solely to perform duties or services for that government (including participation in an international meeting or conference, other than one convened by or under the auspices of a designated international organization, held in the United States) which, in the view of the Department, are official in nature.  (See 9 FAM 402.3-7(B) for classification of aliens attending meetings or conferences convened by or under the auspices of a designated international organization.)

b. (U) ATA Training:  In accordance with the above provisions, foreign government officials and law enforcement personnel coming to the United States under sponsorship of the foreign government for training by Diplomatic Security’s Office of Antiterrorism Training Assistance (DS/ATA) shall be accorded A-2 visas.  As the training program is less than 90 days, the visa should include the required “TDY” designation per 9 FAM 402.3-4(H) paragraph 5.  (See 9 FAM 402.3-4(H) paragraph 6 for guidance on annotating the ”ATA” visas.)

9 FAM 402.3-5(D)(3)  (U) 90 Day Rule Limitations

(CT:VISA-362;   05-04-2017)

(U) Under the "90-day-rule," foreign government officials coming to the United States for 90 days or more should only be issued A-2 visas if they are coming to work at an embassy, consulate, or miscellaneous foreign government office in the United States.  There are limited exceptions to this rule.  One exception to the rule is for personnel of foreign armed forces for education or training in accordance with 9 FAM 402.3-5(D)(6) below.  A second exception is for foreign government officials traveling to the United States pursuant to an executed Technical Assistance Agreement (TAA) or Manufacturing Licensing Agreement (MLA) relating to direct commercial sales (DCS) or a Letter of Offer and Acceptance (LOA) for a foreign military sale (FMS) for U.S. defense articles, services, or training at DoD facilities and/or the facility(ies) of the provider of such articles, services, or training.  You may also issue an A-2 visa to a foreign government official who otherwise qualifies and is coming to work at a U.S. Government agency on behalf of a foreign government for longer than 90 days, as long as the foreign government and the U.S. Government agency request A-2 visa issuance.  The U.S. Government agency letter must provide a point of contact and should be scanned into the CCD.  If you determine there is a particular U.S. Government interest in A-2 visa issuance in any other case outside the scope of the 90-day-rule, please submit a request for an AO to CA/VO/L/A, which will consult with the Office of the Legal Adviser and the Office of Foreign Missions on the case.

9 FAM 402.3-5(D)(4)  (U) Immediate Family of Alien Classifiable A-2

(CT:VISA-362;   05-04-2017)

(U) See 22 CFR 41.21(a)(3) and 9 FAM 402.3-4(J), Immediate Family of Foreign Government and International Organization Officials and Employees. Qualifying immediate family members of an alien classifiable as A-2 are also classifiable as A-2. 

9 FAM 402.3-5(D)(5)  (U) Official Acting as Courier

(CT:VISA-147;   07-13-2016)

(U) See 22 CFR 41.22(h)(2). 

9 FAM 402.3-5(D)(6)  (U) Personnel of Foreign Armed Services

(CT:VISA-147;   07-13-2016)

a. (U) Personnel of foreign armed services from other than NATO countries, coming to the United States in connection with their military status for education or training at any of the U.S. military schools or on a U.S. military installation, are treated as foreign government officials for visa classification purposes.

b. (U) Also treated as foreign government officials are personnel of foreign armed services from other than NATO countries, coming to receive military training for up to 90 days on TDY status at a location other than a U.S. military school or a U.S. military installation, provided that the training is either U.S. Government-provided or sponsored, or the training has been licensed by the Office of Defense Trade Control Licensing (PM/DTCL).  To verify PM/DTCL licensing of training, submit a request for an advisory opinion (AO) via e-mail or through the NIV system.  Post should include detailed information about the training in the AO, including where the training is being held, the company holding the training (and a point of contact at the company if possible), the military equipment and any parts or components of that equipment.

9 FAM 402.3-5(D)(7)  (U) Students at the Inter-American Defense College (IADC)

(CT:VISA-362;   05-04-2017)

(U) Students at the Inter-American Defense College (IADC) are classifiable as A-2; this includes military and civilians attending the IADC as students.  All other staff members, advisors, and other representatives traveling to the IADC are classifiable either G-1 or G-4, depending on their roles (see 9 FAM 402.3-7(E)(3)). 

9 FAM 402.3-5(E)  (U) Qualifying for A-1 or A-2 Classification: Purpose of Entry and Official Duties in the United States Determines Classification

(CT:VISA-362;   05-04-2017)

a. (U) Qualification for A-1 or A-2 classification is determined by the purpose for which the alien seeks to enter the United States and the nature of the official duties the alien will perform while there.  Therefore, the fact that an alien is an official or employee of a foreign government or is the holder of a diplomatic, official, or service passport does not in itself, except for a head of state or head of government (and their immediate family) as provided in 9 FAM 402.3-5(C)(1) above, qualify the alien for an A-1 or A-2 visa.

b. (U) The fact that there may be government interest or control in a given organization is not in itself controlling on the matter of A-2 entitlement. There must be some further showing that the particular duties or services to be performed by the applicant are themselves of an inherently governmental character or nature.  Where an organization is essentially engaged in commercial and/or competitive activities (e.g., banking, mining, or transportation), an official traveling on behalf of such organization would generally not be qualified for an A-2 visa.  Depending upon the purpose of travel to the United States, consideration may be given to B-1, L-1, or E classification.  You must review all applications for A-2 visas for officials of organizations which are not directly engaged in functions of a governmental nature as measured by U.S. standards.

c.  (U) If any difficulty is encountered in resolving a particular case, you should submit the case to CA/VO/L/A for an AO.  The AO request should include a full report as to the nature, structure and purpose of the organization concerned, together with your analysis and comments.

9 FAM 402.3-5(F)  (U) Honorary Consuls

(CT:VISA-362;   05-04-2017)

(U) Honorary consuls are usually so designated because the performance of duties for the foreign government which appoints them is only incidental to the primary purposes of entry into, or presence in, the United States, typically for business, employment, study, or some other nongovernmental purpose.  Therefore, an honorary consul does not usually seek to enter solely in order to perform governmental official duties and is not normally classifiable A-1 or A-2.  However, the term “honorary” may be used in the consul’s title even though the consul is coming solely to perform official duties.  In such a case, you should request an AO from CA/VO/L/A for the appropriate visa classification of the alien.

9 FAM 402.3-5(G)  (U) Aliens Entitled to A-3 Classification

(CT:VISA-78;   03-04-2016)

(U) See 9 FAM 402.3-9 Attendants, Servants, and Personal Employees of Officials – A-3, G-5, and NATO-7 Visas.

9 FAM 402.3-5(H)  (U) Other Considerations for A Visas

9 FAM 402.3-5(H)(1)  (U) “A” Status for Lawful Permanent Residents (LPRs) and Dependents

(CT:VISA-362;   05-04-2017)

(U) Post must not issue an A visa to an LPR.  If an LPR is employed by a foreign government and seeks a visa to travel to the United States on assignment to their country's mission in the United States, he or she would be eligible for an A-1 or A-2 visa status only if he or she surrendered his or her status as a legal permanent resident and was otherwise acceptable and eligible for the A-1 or A-2 visa.  Please note that an LPR cannot serve as a diplomatic agent or consular officer in the United States (as an LPR, but must instead have an A-1 visa).  You should contact CA/VO/L/A for any questions regarding immediate family members of an LPR seeking an A-1 visa.  However, an LPR can serve as administrative and technical staff/support staff (as an LPR, without an A-2 visa) in an Embassy or Consulate.  The immediate family members of these LPRs may be issued A-2 visas, provided they are eligible to receive visas (See 9 FAM 402.3-4(J)(7)).   

9 FAM 402.3-5(H)(2)  (U) Advisory Opinions

(CT:VISA-362;   05-04-2017)

(U) Occasionally, posts may receive instructions to request AOs for diplomats of certain countries for a variety of reasons unrelated to security concerns (e.g., unwillingness or inability to meet debts incurred by diplomatic missions in the United States).  The instructions may identify the office(s) in the Department that should be consulted prior to visa issuance.  Posts receiving “A” visa applications from diplomats who purport to represent former governments of countries which have experienced civil unrest or war should contact the Department (CA/VO/L/A and the relevant country desk) for guidance on whether “A” status is still appropriate.

9 FAM 402.3-5(I)  (U) Taipei Economic and Cultural Representative Office (TECRO) Employees

9 FAM 402.3-5(I)(1)  (U) TECRO Employees Unable to Receive A or G Visas

(CT:VISA-78;   03-04-2016)

(U) The United States does not have official relations with Taiwan, nor does it recognize Taiwan as an independent, sovereign state.  Therefore, employees of the Taipei Economic and Cultural Representative Office (TECRO) may not receive "A" or "G" nonimmigrant visa classification.  Representatives of Taiwan employed by TECRO currently receive E nonimmigrant visas and are admitted to the United States in E-1 nonimmigrant classification.

9 FAM 402.3-5(I)(2)  (U) TECRO Dependents Over 21 Years of Age Entitled to "E-1" Classification

(CT:VISA-362;   05-04-2017)

a. (U) Under INA 101(a)(15)(E) and INA 101(b)(1), as amended, children of treaty traders and investors who reach the age of 21 become ineligible for "E" nonimmigrant classification.  However, TRA 4(A) of the Taiwan Relations Act (TRA) preserves for the dependent sons and daughters of TECRO employees over the age of 21, the entitlements "applied with respect to Taiwan prior to January 01, 1979," the date of Taiwan's derecognition by the United States.

b. (U) Accordingly, pursuant to TRA 4(A), unmarried dependent sons and daughters of TECRO employees may remain in valid "E" nonimmigrant classification.  They may also be issued visas for such classification after the age of 21, provided that they continue to meet the definition of "immediate family" as defined in 22 CFR 41.21(a)(3).  "Immediate family" includes "unmarried sons and daughters" whether by blood or adoption, who are not members of some other household and who will reside regularly in the household of the principal alien, provided that such unmarried sons and daughters are:

(1)  (U) Under the age of 21; or

(2)  (U) Under the age of 23 and in full-time attendance as students at post- secondary educational institutions. (See 9 FAM 402.3-4(J)(3).)

9 FAM 402.3-5(I)(3)  (U) TECRO Employees and/or Dependents Authorized Duration of Status (D/S)

(CT:VISA-78;   03-04-2016)

(U) Employees of TECRO and their dependents admitted in E-1 status are authorized to use D/S by the United States Customs and Border Protection (USCBP) Officer, who will annotate the Form I-94, Arrival -Departure Record, “D/S” for these aliens at the port of entry.

9 FAM 402.3-5(I)(4)  (U) Procedures for Making Application for "E" Reinstatement

(CT:VISA-362;   05-04-2017)

a. (U) The dependents of TECRO employees who were deemed to be out of status because the USCIS officer at the port of entry annotated their Form I-94, with an expiration date instead of "D/S," may apply for reinstatement to "E" status.

b. (U) TECRO must submit the following to CA/VO/DO/DL, through the American Institute/Taiwan (AIT):

(1)  (U) An applicant's passport, valid for at least 6 months;

(2)  (U) A currently valid Form I-94 (USCIS will not consider processing a case whose Form I-94 has expired); and

(3)  (U) A letter from TECRO requesting that USCIS annotate the applicant's Form I-94 to read:  D/S.

9 FAM 402.3-5(I)(5)  (U) Employment Authorization for TECRO Dependents

(CT:VISA-78;   03-04-2016)

a. (U) An alien spouse or unmarried son or daughter of a TECRO employee may apply for employment authorization under 8 CFR 274a.12(C)(2).  In order to be eligible to apply for employment authorization under this section, unmarried sons and daughters of TECRO employees who are older than 21 must meet the definition of "immediate family" members set forth in 22 CFR 41.21(a)(3).  They must also fall within the definition of the term "dependent" set forth in 8 CFR 214.2(A)(2).

b. (U) Accordingly, employment authorization may be requested by unmarried sons and daughters of TECRO employees who are older than 21 years of age, under the age of 23, and in full-time attendance as students at post-secondary educational institutions as provided in 8 CFR 214.2(A)(2)(III).  Under no circumstances may the employment authorization benefits afforded to dependents of TECRO employees exceed those provided to dependents under 8 CFR 214.2(A)(2) and (G)(2).  TECRO dependents seeking to apply for employment authorization should follow existing procedures set forth in 8 CFR 274a.

9 FAM 402.3-6  (U) Officials in Transit – C-2 AND C-3 Visas

9 FAM 402.3-6(A)  (U) Statutory and Regulatory Authority

9 FAM 402.3-6(A)(1)  (U) Immigration and Nationality Act

(CT:VISA-78;   03-04-2016)

(U) INA 101(a)(15)(C) (8 U.S.C. 1101(a)(15)(C)); INA 212(d)(8) (8 U.S.C. 1182(d)(8)).

9 FAM 402.3-6(A)(2)  (U) Code of Federal Regulations

(CT:VISA-78;   03-04-2016)

(U) 22 CFR 41.23.

9 FAM 402.3-6(B)  (U) In General

(CT:VISA-362;   05-04-2017)

a. (U) C-2 Visas:  C-2 visas are appropriate for an alien who qualifies as a person entitled to pass in transit to and from the United Nations Headquarters District and foreign countries, under the provisions of paragraphs (3), (4), and (5) of section 11 of the Headquarters Agreement with United Nations.  Section 11 of the Headquarters Agreement provides:

The federal, state or local authorities of the United States shall not impose any impediments to transit to or from the headquarters district of (1) representatives of Members or officials of the United Nations, or of specialized agencies as defined in Article 57, paragraph 2, of the Charter, or the families of such representatives or officials; (2) experts performing missions for the United Nations or for such specialized agencies; (3) representatives of the press, or of radio, film or other information agencies, who have been accredited by the United Nations (or by such a specialized agency) in its discretion after consultation with the United States; (4) representatives of nongovernmental organizations recognized by the United Nations for the purpose of consultation under Article 71 of the Charter; or (5) other persons invited to the headquarters district by the United Nations or by such specialized agency on official business. The appropriate American authorities shall afford any necessary protection to such persons while in transit to or from the headquarters district. This section does not apply to general interruptions of transportation which are to be dealt with as provided in Section 17, and does not impair the effectiveness of generally applicable laws and regulations as to the operation of means of transportation.

b. (U) C-3 Visas:  An accredited official of a foreign government intending to proceed in immediate and continuous transit through the United States on official business for that government is entitled to the benefits of INA 212(d)(8).  The foreign government must grant similar privileges to officials of the United States, and is classifiable C-3 under the provisions of INA 101(a)(15)(C).  Members of the immediate family, attendants, servants, or personal employees of such an official receive the same classification as the principal alien.

c.  (U) Transit Visa:  For information on transit visas for non-diplomatic or non-official purposes see 9 FAM 402.4.

9 FAM 402.3-6(C)  (U) Ineligibilities

(CT:VISA-362;   05-04-2017)

(U) C-2 and C-3 visa classifications are exempt from most visa ineligibilities under INA 212(a)Of the INA 212(a) ineligibilities, only INA 212(a)(3)(A), INA 212(a)(3)(B), INA 212(a)(3)(C), and INA 212(a)(7)(B) apply (see 9 FAM 402.3-4(B)).

9 FAM 402.3-6(D)  (U) Exemptions and Travel Limitations for Holders of C-2 Visas

9 FAM 402.3-6(D)(1)  (U) Admission to United Nations Headquarters District

(CT:VISA-78;   03-04-2016)

(U) Because of the obligations undertaken by the United States pursuant to the United Nations (UN) Headquarters Agreement, applicants for C-2 visas are exempted from the grounds of ineligibility listed in INA 212(a) except for INA 212(a)(3)(A), INA 212(a)(3)(B), INA 212(a)(3)(C), and INA 212(a)(7)(B) thereof.  Therefore, DHS regulations provide that holders of C-2 visas may be admitted only on the following conditions:

(1)  (U) The alien must proceed directly to New York City and remain continuously within the Headquarters District and its immediate vicinity, departing therefrom only to leave the United States; and

(2)  (U) The alien must be in possession of a document establishing the alien’s ability to enter a foreign country following the alien’s sojourn in the United Nations Headquarters District.

9 FAM 402.3-6(D)(2)  (U) Defining "United Nation Headquarters District" and Explaining Travel Restrictions

(CT:VISA-78;   03-04-2016)

(U) Persons referred to in 9 FAM 402.3-6(D)(1) above are restricted to “the United Nations Headquarters District and its immediate vicinity,” defined as the “area lying within a twenty-five mile radius of Columbus Circle, New York, N.Y.” Consular officers shall advise applicants for C-2 visas of these travel restrictions.

9 FAM 402.3-6(D)(3)  (U) Waiver of Ineligibility

(CT:VISA-362;   05-04-2017)

(U) For discussions of waiver of ineligibility under INA 212(d)(3)(A) for C-2 visa applicants, see 9 FAM 305.4-2 and 9 FAM 701.2.

9 FAM 402.3-6(E)  (U) Certain Aliens Proceeding to the United Nations

(CT:VISA-422;   07-28-2017)

(U) An alien who is classified C-2 may, as an alternative, be issued a B-1 or I visa if the consular officer finds the alien otherwise qualified for such classification and the alien pays any required fee.  If the alien is ineligible to receive a visa under any of the provisions of INA 212(a), the consular officer may recommend a waiver of ineligibility under INA 212(d)(3)(A) only if the circumstances in the alien’s case justify such a recommendation pursuant to the rules set out in 9 FAM 305.4-2 and 9 FAM 701.2 (classified).

9 FAM 402.3-6(F)  (U) Information Media Representatives Proceeding to United Nations

(CT:VISA-78;   03-04-2016)

(U) In the case of an alien coming within the provisions of paragraph (3) of section 11 of the Headquarters Agreement with the United Nations (for example, representatives of the press, radio, film, or other information agencies), the consular officer may not issue a C-2 visa unless the alien presents evidence of accreditation by the United Nations.  The consular officer shall refer an applicant for a C-2 visa inquiring about the procedure for obtaining such accreditation to the appropriate United Nations information center or to the Accreditation Office, Office of Public Information, United Nations, New York, N.Y.  If the consular officer obtains a waiver of ineligibility under INA 212(d)(3)(A) in the alien’s behalf through the Department, the consular officer may presume that the Department has resolved the question of accreditation.

9 FAM 402.3-6(G)  (U) G-4 Aliens in Transit

(CT:VISA-78;   03-04-2016)

(U) See 9 FAM 402.3-7(I) below for information on issuing G-4 Visas to officers and employees of designated international organizations for transit through the United States.

9 FAM 402.3-7  (U) PERSONS ASSOCIATED WITH International Organizations - G Visas

9 FAM 402.3-7(A)  (U) Statutory and Regulatory Authority

9 FAM 402.3-7(A)(1)  (U) Immigration and Nationality Act

(CT:VISA-78;   03-04-2016)

(U) INA 101(a)(15)(G) (8 U.S.C. 1101(a)(15)(G).

9 FAM 402.3-7(A)(2)  (U) Code of Federal Regulations

(CT:VISA-78;   03-04-2016)

(U) 22 CFR 41.21; 22 CFR 41.24.

9 FAM 402.3-7(A)(3)  (U) United States Code

(CT:VISA-78;   03-04-2016)

(U) 22 U.S.C. 288.

9 FAM 402.3-7(B)  (U) G Visa Classifications  

(CT:VISA-362;   05-04-2017)

a. (U) A qualified person may be issued a “G” visa in one of the categories listed below:

(1)  (U) G-1 visas:  Issued to foreign government officials and employees assigned to work for 90 days or more as members of a permanent mission to a designated international organization, regardless of rank, and to members of their immediate families.  Mission members having a rank equivalent to diplomatic agents should be at least 21 at the time of entry into the U.S.  G-1 visas are therefore appropriate for the principal permanent representative as well as the mission’s secretaries, chauffeurs, and custodial employees.  However, a G-1 visa should not be issued to domestic employees of such mission members; domestic employees are classifiable as G-5.

(2)  (U) G-2 visas:  Issued to foreign government officials and employees traveling for less than 90 days as representatives of a recognized government for activities of a designated international organization, and to members of their immediate families. Such representatives may be traveling to attend meetings of a designated international organization, for example, to represent their governments at the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA), or as TDY officers to that country’s mission to the international organization.  G-2 visas may also be issued to military officers who are assisting the United Nations Secretariat with peacekeeping matters.

(3)  (U) G-3 visas:  Issued to foreign government officials and employees traveling as representatives of non-recognized or non-member governments, regardless of rank, and to members of their immediate families.  This includes TDY travel for representatives of such governments to participate in temporary meetings of designated international organizations (e.g., a meeting of the UNGA and Security Council).

(4)  (U) G-4 visas:  Issued to officers and employees of designated international organizations traveling on official business on behalf of the international organization, and to members of their immediate families.  Specifically, G-4 visas may be issued for personnel of any rank who are proceeding to the United States to take up an appointment at a designated international organization (including the United Nations) or traveling on behalf of the international organization for temporary (TDY) travel.  G-4 visas are also appropriate for officers and employees of designated international organizations, who are not assigned in the United States, but are transiting the United States on official business on behalf of that international organization.  For transit G-4 visas, the number of entries must be limited to the official request.  Domestic employees of international organization personnel are not classifiable as G-4, and should be issued G-5 visas if eligible.

(5)  (U) G-5 visas:  Issued to the attendants and personal employees of persons in G-1 through G-4 status.  (See 9 FAM 402.3-9.)

b. (U) A person who meets the foregoing requirements for G-1, G-3 (non-TDY), or G-4 classification is expected to perform services for the foreign government or international organization on an essentially full-time basis (at least 35 hours per week) and to reside in the metropolitan area of the international organization where the individual will be serving.

c.  (U) Interns: Interns applying for a visa to work at a mission to an IO or at an IO may qualify for a G visa if the intern's visa application is accompanied by a diplomatic note that contains either (1) an express statement that the mission or IO considers the applicant its employee during the internship, or (2) an acknowledgement that the mission or IO will exercise ultimate authority over the continuation of the intern's assignment and the control and direction of the official duties to be performed for the duration of the intern's U.S. assignment.  The duration of the internship and status as paid/unpaid are not relevant in classifying an intern as G-1 (intern at a mission to a designated IO for more than 90 days), G-2 (intern at a mission to a designated IO for less than 90 days), G-3 (intern at a mission to a designated IO where the foreign government is not a member of the IO or where the government is not recognized), or G-4 (intern at a designated IO).  (Also see 9 FAM 402.3-7(D)(2) regarding UN interns.)

9 FAM 402.3-7(C)  (U) Limited Grounds of Ineligibility

9 FAM 402.3-7(C)(1)  (U) Cases Involving Possible Ineligibility

(CT:VISA-362;   05-04-2017)

Unavailable

9 FAM 402.3-7(C)(2)  (U) Communications to Department Regarding Ineligibility

(CT:VISA-78;   03-04-2016)

(U) You must cable the Department concerning persons who are found ineligible for visas and who are coming to the United Nations.  Cables must be addressed "For CA/VO/L/A, IO/UNP and USUN."  In referring a case to the Department, the cable must include:

(1)  (U) All available details of the supporting evidence;

(2)  (U) The applicable statutory provision; and

(3)  (U) The conclusions and recommendations of the consular officer.

9 FAM 402.3-7(D)  (U) Persons Proceeding to the United Nations

9 FAM 402.3-7(D)(1)  (U) Expeditious Processing of United Nations Visa Applications

(CT:VISA-362;   05-04-2017)

a. (U) Representatives to the United Nations and officials of the United Nations Secretariat are sensitive to the performance by the United States of its host obligations under the Headquarters Agreement with the United Nations.  Consequently, any mention of the United Nations on a visa application calls for expeditious consideration, or, where necessary, prompt submission for an AO.

b. (U) When the United Nations was invited to locate its headquarters in the United States it was evident that persons of many political backgrounds would need to be admitted to the United States on United Nations business.  For this reason, Congress provided that persons entitled to international organization status are exempt from most of the grounds of ineligibility listed in INA 212(a).  (See 9 FAM 402.3-7(C)(1) or 22 CFR 41.21(d) for the grounds of ineligibility that apply to these applicants.)

9 FAM 402.3-7(D)(2)  (U) Interns Temporarily Employed at the United Nations

(CT:VISA-362;   05-04-2017)

a. (U) Interns are generally not classifiable B because they perform hands-on services; however, United Nations interns may be classified for temporary employment as a B-1 "intern" at the United Nations if he or she is of H-1B caliber.  In order to determine that an alien intern has met the H-1B caliber standard, the consular officer should:

(1)  (U) Be able to answer affirmatively that the proposed duties chiefly involve the theoretical and practical application of a body of highly specialized knowledge; and

(2)  (U) Ensure that the alien attained a bachelor or higher degree (or its equivalent) in a specific specialty that, in practice, requires the attainment of such a degree in order to enter that specialty.

b. (U) For instance, a degree in chemistry would not qualify the applicant for employment as an accountant.  On the other hand, certain jobs in accounting, marketing, and finance would be considered “specialty occupations.”  Professions requiring state licensure are generally considered “specialty occupations.”  You should seek an advisory opinion from CA/VO/L/A in any situation where a question exists about a prospective United Nations intern’s qualifications.

c.  (U) A United Nations intern may alternatively qualify for a G-4 visa provided the applicant meets the requirements in 9 FAM 402.3-7(B)

9 FAM 402.3-7(D)(3)  (U) Transportation Cable/Note Required for United Nations Officers and Employees

(CT:VISA-422;   07-28-2017)

(U) G-4 visas must be issued to officers and employees of the United Nations and to their immediate families based on a telegraphic request authorized by the Chief of the Transportation Section, United Nations Secretariat ("Transportation Cable/Note").  A Transportation Cable/Note is also required for personal employees (classified as G-5) of officers and employees of the UN (classified as G-4).  A Transportation Cable/Note from the Chief is not required in the case of a G-5 who will be employed by a person classified G-1, G-2, or G-3.  (See 9 FAM 402.3-7(N) below for a listing of United Nations Organizations for Which a Transportation Cable/Note Is Required from the Chief of the Transportation Section, United Nations Secretariat.)

9 FAM 402.3-7(D)(4)  (U) Participants in United Nations Secretariat Exchange Visitor Program

(CT:VISA-362;   05-04-2017)

(U) Participants in the exchange visitor program of the Training and Fellowship Program Section, Bureau of Technical Assistance Operations, United Nations Secretariat, are classifiable “J.”  (See 9 FAM 402.5-6 regarding exchange visitors.)

9 FAM 402.3-7(D)(5)  (U) Director and Teachers of United Nations International School

(CT:VISA-362;   05-04-2017)

(U) The director and teachers of the United Nations International School (UNIS) are not considered to be staff members.  A G-4 visa, however, may be issued to a qualified applicant destined to the school as a director or a teacher, provided you receive a Transportation Cable/Note from the Chief of the Transportation Section, United Nations Secretariat as described above in 9 FAM 402.3-7(D)(3).

9 FAM 402.3-7(D)(6)  (U) United Nations Laissez-Passer (UNLP)

(CT:VISA-362;   05-04-2017)

a. (U) Issuing G-4 Visa in United Nations Laissez-Passer (UNLP):

(1)  (U) The UNLP is a bound booklet in passport format.  The cover bears the gold embossed seal of the United Nations, and is either red or light blue in color, depending upon the rank of the recipient. 

(2)  (U) Only a G-4 visa may be placed in a UNLP.  The bearer must present a Form DS-160, Online Nonimmigrant Visa Application, and a photograph for a G-4 visa in connection with the UNLP.  (See 9 FAM 403.3-4(A) for photograph requirements.)  You must receive a written or telegraphic confirmation from the Department or from the Chief of the Transportation Section, United Nations Secretariat, indicating that the applicant is an employee of the United Nations traveling on official business.

b. (U) Validity of G-4 Visa in UNLP:  The period of validity of a G-4 visa placed in a UNLP must be restricted to cover the official travel certified in the letter or telegram from the Chief of the Transportation Section, United Nations Secretariat.  The visa must be valid for one entry, unless the letter or telegram from the Chief of the Transportation Section, United Nations Secretariat, requests more entries.  If the letter or telegram is not clear on these points, you must contact the U.S. Mission to the United Nations (USUN) either by phone on (212) 415-4167, by fax (212) 415-4162, or by cable.  Cables must be addressed to the attention of Host Country.

c.  (U) Placing G-4 Visa in National Passport Rather Than in UNLP:  The Secretary General, all under secretaries, and all assistant secretaries general of the United Nations may be issued G-4 visas valid for 60 months with multiple entries.  The visas, however, must be placed in the national passport rather than in the UNLP.

d. (U) For all others at the United Nations or United Nations Secretariat, refer to the reciprocity schedule of the country concerned.

9 FAM 402.3-7(D)(7)  (U) United Nations Permanent Observer Mission Representatives and Dependents

(CT:VISA-362;   05-04-2017)

a. (U) Types of Missions:  Permanent Observer Missions at the United Nations include Intergovernmental Organizations and other entities invited to participate as observers.  United Nations Observer Mission personnel may be entitled to A or G visas because they are foreign government officials traveling on behalf of the foreign government or are officers or employees of a designated IO.  However, there are numerous United Nations Observer Missions whose representatives do not qualify for A or G visas, generally because they are representatives of an organization that is not designated under the International Organizations Immunities Act (IOIA) and therefore are not entitled to G-4 classification.  In addition, certain individuals who are invited by the U.N. may apply and qualify for a B-1 or C-2 visa, as appropriate.

b. (U) B Visa Classification:  Principal applicants seeking to serve at United Nations Permanent Observer Missions who are not otherwise entitled to A or G visas are to be issued B-1 visas.  Dependents are to be issued B-2 visas. (See 9 FAM 403.9-5 for visa annotation procedures.)

c.  (U) Exemption from fees:  Principals and dependents of United Nations Permanent Observer Missions who are issued 'B' visas are exempt from all visa fees.  (See also 9 FAM 402.3-4(F), 9 FAM 403.4-3(A) and 9 FAM 403.4-3(B).)

d. (U) Notification Requirements Regarding "B" Visas for Permanent Observers:  Observer Missions are not required to notify the United States Mission to the United Nations (USUN) of visa requests for Observer Mission personnel and their dependents, but may do so on occasion via e-mail to USUNvisas@state.gov.  If the Observer Mission notifies USUN that it will request a visa for an individual, then the USUN Visa Unit will inform post that it received notification that a particular applicant is Observer Mission personnel and will seek a visa to travel to the Observer Mission.  If you have any questions regarding observer mission personnel, reach out to CA/VO/L/A, CA/VO/DO/DL (diplomaticvisas@state.gov), and the USUN Visa Unit.  You can reach the USUN Visa Unit by e-mail (USUNvisas@state.gov), telephone at (212) 415-4167, and by fax at (212)415-4162.

e. Unavailable   

9 FAM 402.3-7(E)  (U) Persons Proceeding to the Organization of American States (OAS)

9 FAM 402.3-7(E)(1)  (U) Issuing G-4 Visas to Officers and Employees of OAS General Secretariat

(CT:VISA-362;   05-04-2017)

(U) The Secretariat for Management, through the Department of Human Resources (Personnel Office) of the Organization of American States (OAS) General Secretariat, is responsible for requesting the issuance of visas for persons appointed to, or under contract to serve in, the General Secretariat of the OAS.  You must accept requests for G-4 visas on behalf of such persons (including immediate family members (also classifiable as G-4) and domestic employees (classifiable as G-5)) only from the Secretariat for Management or from the Department of Human Resources of the OAS.

9 FAM 402.3-7(E)(2)  (U) Official Travel Document of OAS Not Considered "Passport"

(CT:VISA-362;   05-04-2017)

(U) The official travel document of the OAS is issued to an employee of the OAS General Secretariat or other agency of the OAS.  The purpose of the document is to identify the holder as an officer or employee of an agency of the OAS, and to facilitate travel compatible with the interests of the OAS.  The document is not considered a "passport" as defined in INA 101(a)(30), and therefore, visas must not be placed in this document.  (See also 9 FAM 403.9-3(A)(2).)

9 FAM 402.3-7(E)(3)  (U) Personnel at the Inter-American Defense Board (IADB) and Inter-American Defense College (IADC)

(CT:VISA-362;   05-04-2017)

a. (U) G-1 Visas Classification:  IADB Members of the Council of Delegates and persons assigned to serve on the delegations as diplomatic advisors and accredited as such at their representative OAS mission are classifiable G-1. 

b. (U) G-4 Visa Classification:  The following staff positions at the IADB are classifiable as G-4: The Chair and Vice-Chair at the IADB; the Director of Staff at the IADB; the Secretary of the IADB; and members of the international staff of the IADB, including commissioned military officers from the various OAS member states and civil members of the international staff.  Staff members and advisors for the IADC, including the Vice Director and Chief of Studies at the IADC and military officers who are advisors at the IADC (i.e., staff of the IADB at the IADC) are also classifiable G-4.  (For students at the IADC, see 9 FAM 402.3-5(D)(7).)

9 FAM 402.3-7(F)  (U) Participants in Courses Given by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) Institute

(CT:VISA-362;   05-04-2017)

(U) An applicant who is nominated by a member government of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), and accepted by the IMF to attend courses given by the Fund's Institute, is classifiable G‑2.  The applicant must possess evidence from the Fund certifying acceptance for participation in a specific course.  The request for the visa must be made or supported by the foreign government concerned.

9 FAM 402.3-7(G)  (U) Participants at the Economic Development Institute of International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (World Bank)

(CT:VISA-362;   05-04-2017)

(U) A applicant who is nominated by a member government of the World Bank and accepted by the World Bank to attend a course given at the Economic Development Institute of the Bank is classifiable G‑2.  The applicant must possess a letter from the Economic Development Institute of the Bank certifying acceptance for participation in the course of study.  The request for a visa must be made or supported by the foreign government concerned.

9 FAM 402.3-7(H)  (U) Employees of INTELSAT

9 FAM 402.3-7(H)(1)  (U) Employee Six Months or More Prior to Privatization Date

(CT:VISA-362;   05-04-2017)

a. (U) An alien employed as an officer or employee of INTELSAT, six months or more prior to July 18, 2001, the date of privatization, must be considered to be a nonimmigrant under INA 101(a)(15)(G)(iv) (G-4) provided the alien:

(1)  (U) Was continuously an officer or employee of INTELSAT during the six month period prior to the date of privatization; and

(2)  (U) Maintained lawful nonimmigrant status as a G-4 during that six month period.

b. (U) Immediate family members of aliens meeting the above criteria (in paragraph a) are also entitled to G-4 status.  (See 9 FAM 402.3-4(J) regarding qualification as immediate family.)

9 FAM 402.3-7(H)(2)  (U) Employee of Successor or Separated Entity of INTELSAT

(CT:VISA-362;   05-04-2017)

a. (U) If an alien commences service as an officer or employee of a successor or separated entity of INTELSAT before the date of privatization, but after March 17, 2000, such alien must be considered to be a nonimmigrant under INA 101(a)(15)(G)(iv) (G-4), if the alien:

(1)  (U) Was continuously an officer or employee during the six month period prior to the date of privatization; and

(2)  (U) Maintained lawful nonimmigrant status as a G-4 during that six month period.

b. (U) The term "successor entity" means any privatized entity created from the privatization of INTELSAT or from the assets of INTELSAT.  It does not include any entity that is a separated entity.

c.  (U) The term "separated entity" means a privatized entity to which a portion of the assets owned by INTELSAT are transferred prior to full privatization of INTELSAT.

9 FAM 402.3-7(H)(3)  (U) Newly Hired INTELSAT Personnel

(CT:VISA-78;   03-04-2016)

(U) Officers and/or employees of privatized INTELSAT who were hired after the date of privatization (July 18, 2001), as well as any employees who may have been hired less than six months prior to privatization, are not eligible for G-4 status and would require an immigrant visa (IV), H visa, or another classification of visa authorizing employment.

9 FAM 402.3-7(H)(4)  (U) Domestic Workers of Privatized INTELSAT Personnel

(CT:VISA-362;   05-04-2017)

(U) Domestic employees of privatized INTELSAT personnel are not eligible for G-5 status, regardless of whether their employer holds G-4 status under the "grandfathering" provisions in 9 FAM 402.3-7(H)(1) and (2) above.

9 FAM 402.3-7(H)(5)  (U) Annotating Visas of Privatized INTELSAT Employees

(CT:VISA-78;   03-04-2016)

(U) In addition to the standard annotation for G-4 visas (see 9 FAM 402.3-4(H)), G-4 visas issued to qualifying privatized INTELSAT officers and/or employees and their immediate family should include the following additional line at the end of the annotation:

     “ISSUED PURSUANT TO SECTION 301 OF Public Law 106-396.”

9 FAM 402.3-7(H)(6)  (U) International Telecommunications Satellite Organization (ITSO) Personnel

(CT:VISA-362;   05-04-2017)

(U) A small part of former INTELSAT was not privatized and will remain a qualifying international organization under the acronym ITSO (International Telecommunications Satellite Organization).  ITSO personnel and their immediate family are eligible for G-4 classification regardless of the date on which the principal alien was hired.  In addition, domestic employees of ITSO personnel are eligible for G-5 classification as domestic employees of personnel employed by an international organization.

9 FAM 402.3-7(I)  (U) Issuing G-4 Visas for Transit Purposes

(CT:VISA-362;   05-04-2017)

a. (U) Officers and employees of designated international organizations who are not assigned in the United States may be accorded G-4 classification to transit the United States on official business of the international organization.  Posts must endorse G‑4 visas issued to such applicants who are generally on, or returning from home leave, as follows:

          VALID FOR IMMEDIATE AND CONTINUOUS TRANSIT ONLY

b. (U) Such an applicant who expects to spend time in the United States for personal business or pleasure must also possess a “B” visa.

9 FAM 402.3-7(J)  (U) Issuing Diplomatic Type or Official Type Visas to Applicants Classified G-4

(CT:VISA-422;   07-28-2017)

(U) Except in those cases listed in 22 CFR 41.26(c)(2) (see also 9 FAM 402.3-10(C) regarding diplomatic type visas), persons who are classifiable G-4 are not entitled to receive diplomatic type G-4 visas.  In all G-4 visa cases, you must receive a request, as described in 9 FAM 402.3-7(D)(3) above, from a designated international organization listed in 9 FAM 402.3-7(M) below, prior to G-4 visa issuance. 

9 FAM 402.3-7(K)  (U) Issuing  G-5 Visa to Attendants and Personal Employees

(CT:VISA-78;   03-04-2016)

(U) See 9 FAM 402.3-9, Attendants, Servants, and Personal Employees of Officials – A-3, G-5, and NATO-7 Visas.

9 FAM 402.3-7(L)  (U) Issuing Visa to Applicants Entitled to Documentary Waiver 

(CT:VISA-78;   03-04-2016)

(U) See 9 FAM 201.1-2.

9 FAM 402.3-7(M)  (U) Designated International Organizations

(CT:VISA-601;   06-07-2018)

(U) The following is an alphabetical listing of the international organizations that have been designated by Executive Order pursuant to various treaties or under the International Organizations Immunities Act (IOIA) of December 29, 1945.  A G-1, G-2, G-3, or G-4 visa may only be issued to an applicant who is traveling to the United States (or in some cases transiting the United States) for activities of one of these international organizations.

International Organization

 

E.O.

International Organization

E.O.

African Development Bank

E.O. 12403 (Feb. 8, 1983)

 

African Development Fund

E.O. 11977 (Mar. 14, 1977)

Asian Development Bank

E.O. 11334 (Mar. 7, 1967)

 

African Union

 

E.O. 13377 (April 13, 2005)

Border Environmental Cooperation Commission

E.O. 12904 (Mar. 16, 1994)

 

Caribbean Organization

 

E.O. 10983 (Dec. 30, 1961)

 

Commission for Environmental Cooperation

E.O. 12904 (Mar. 16, 1994)

 

Commission for Labor Cooperation

 

E.O. 12904 (Mar. 16, 1994)

 

Commission for the Study of Alternatives to the Panama Canal

E.O. 12567 (Oct. 2, 1986

Customs Cooperation Council

 

E.O. 11596 (June 5, 1971)

 

European Bank for Reconstruction and Development

 

E.O. 12766 (June 18, 1991

European Central Bank

 

E.O. 13307 (May 29, 2003)

European Space Agency (formerly the European Space Research Organization)

 

 

 

E.O. 11318 (Dec. 5, 1966) & E.O. 12766 (June 18, 1991)

 

 

Food and Agriculture Organization

E.O. 9698 (Feb. 19, 1946)

 

Global Fund

 

E.O. 13395 (Jan. 13, 2006)

Great Lakes Fishery Commission

 

E.O. 11059 (Oct. 23, 1962)

 

GRECO (Council of Europe in Respect of the Group of States Against Corruption)

E.O. 13240 (Dec. 18, 2001)

 

 

Hong Kong Economic and Trade Offices

E.O. 13052 (June 30, 1997)

 

Inter-American Defense Board

E.O. 10228 (Mar. 26, 1951)

Inter-American Development Bank

 

E.O. 10873 (April 8, 1960) & E.O. 11019 (April 27, 1962)

 

Inter-American Institute for Cooperation for Agriculture

E.O. 9751 (July 11, 1946)

 

Inter-American Investment Corporation

E.O. 12567 (Oct. 2, 1986)

 

Inter-American Statistical Institute

E.O. 9751 (July 11, 1946)

Inter-American Tropical Tuna Commission

E.O. 11059 (Oct. 23, 1962)

 

International Atomic Energy Agency

E.O. 10727 (Aug. 31, 1957)

International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (World Bank)

E.O. 9751 (July 11, 1946)

 

International Boundary and Water Commission - the United States and Mexico

E.O. 12467 (Mar. 2, 1984)

 

 

 

International Centre for Settlement  of Investment Disputes

E.O. 11966 (Jan. 19, 1977)

 

International Civil Aviation Organization

 

E.O. 9863 (May 31, 1947)

 

International Coffee Organization

 

E.O. 11225 (May 22, 1965)

 

International Committee of the Red Cross

E.O. 12643 (June 23, 1988)

International Cotton Advisory Committee

E.O. 9911 (Dec. 19, 1947)

International Cotton Institute

E.O. 11283 (May 27, 1966)

 

International Criminal Police Organization (INTERPOL) (Limited Privileges)

E.O. 12425 (June 16, 1983)

 

 

International Development Association

 

E.O. 11966 (Jan. 19, 1977)

 

International Development Law Organization

E.O. 12842 (Mar. 29, 1993)

 

International Fertilizer Development Center

 

E.O. 11977 (Mar. 14, 1977)

 

International Finance Corporation

 

E.O. 10680 (Oct. 2, 1956)

 

International Food Policy Research Institute (Limited Privileges)

 

E.O. 12359 (April 22, 1982)

 

International Fund for Agricultural Development

E.O. 12732 (Oct. 31, 1990)

 

International Hydrographic Bureau

 

E.O. 10769 (May 29, 1958)

 

International Joint Commission - the United States and Canada

E.O. 9972 (June 25, 19480

 

International Labor Organization

 

E.O. 9698 (Feb. 19, 1946)

 

International Maritime Organization (formerly the Intergovernmental Maritime Consultative Organization)

 

E.O. 10795 (Dec. 13, 1958)

 

International Mobile Satellite Organization

 

E.O. 12238 (Sept. 12, 1980)

 

International Monetary Fund

 

E.O. 9751 (July 11, 1946)

 

International Organization for Migration (Formerly Provisional Intergovernmental Committee for the Movement  of Migrants for Europe and Intergovernmental Committee for European Migration)

 

E.O. 10335 (Mar. 28, 1952)

 

International Pacific Halibut Commission

 

E.O. 11059 (Oct. 23, 1962)

 

International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA)

E.O. 13705 (Sept. 3, 2015)

 

International Secretariat for Volunteer Service

 

E.O. 11363 (July 20, 1967)

 

International Telecommunications Satellite Organization (INTELSAT)

E.O. 11718  (May 14, 1973) & E.O. 11966 (Jan. 19, 1977)

 

International Telecommunication Union

 

E.O. 9863 (May 31, 1947)

 

International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources (Limited Privileges)

 

E.O. 12986 (Jan. 18, 1966)

 

International Wheat Advisory Committee (International Wheat Council)

E.O. 9823 (Jan. 24, 1947)

 

Interparliamentary Union

 

E.O. 13097 (Aug. 7, 1998)

 

Israel-United States Binational Industrial Research and Development Foundation

E.O. 12956 (Mar. 13, 1995)

 

ITER International Fusion Energy Organization

 

E.O. 13451 (Nov. 19, 2007)

 

Korean Peninsula Energy Development Organization

E.O. 12997 (April 1, 1996)

 

Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency

 

E.O. 12467 (Aug. 22, 1988)

 

Multinational Force and Observers

E.O. 12359 (April 22, 1982)

 

North American Development Bank

E.O. 12904 (Mar. 16, 1994)

North Pacific Anadromous Fish Commission

E.O. 12895 (Jan. 26, 1994)

 

North Pacific Marine Science Organization

 

E.O. 12894 (Jan. 26, 1994)

 

Office of the High Representative in Bosnia and Herzegovina and the

International Civilian  Office in Kosovo

E.O. 13568 (Mar. 8, 2011)

 

Organization for American States (including Pan American Union)

 

E.O. 10533 (June 3, 1954)

 

Organization for Eastern Caribbean States

E.O. 12669 (Feb. 20, 1989)

 

Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (formerly the Organization for European Economic Cooperation)

E.O. 10133 (June 27, 1950)

 

Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons

E.O. 13049 (June 11, 1997)

 

Pacific Salmon Commission

 

E.O. 12567 (Oct. 2, 1986)

 

Pan American Health Organization (including Pan American Sanitary Bureau)

E.O. 10864 (Feb. 18, 1960)

 

 

Pacific Community (formerly the South Pacific Commission)

 

E.O. 10086 (Nov. 25, 1949)

 

United International Bureau for the Protection of Intellectual Property (BIPRI)

 

E.O. 11484 (Sept. 29, 1969)

 

United Nations

 

E.O. 9698 (Feb. 19, 1946)

 

United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization

E.O. 9863 (May 31, 1947)

 

United Nations Industrial Development Organization

 

E.O. 12628 (Mar. 8, 1988)

 

Universal Postal Union

E.O. 10727 (Aug. 31, 1957)

 

World Health Organization

E.O. 10025 (Dec. 30, 1948)

World Intellectual Property Organization

E.O. 11866 (June 18, 1975)

 

World Meteorological Organization

E.O. 10676 (Sept. 1, 1959)

World Organization for Animal Health (OIE)

 

World Tourism Organization

E.O 13759

(Jan. 12, 2017)

 

E.O. 12507 (Mar. 22, 1985)

World Trade Organization

E.O. 13042 (April 9, 1997)

9 FAM 402.3-7(N)  (U) Requirements for Request for G-4 or G-5 Visa by Chief of Transportation Section, United Nations Secretariat

(CT:VISA-601;   06-07-2018)

I. (U) United Nations Organizations for Which a Transportation Cable/Note Is Required from the Chief of the Transportation Section, United Nations Secretariat:

 

(U) Principal Organs

General Assembly

Security Council

Economic and Social Council

Trusteeship Council

Secretariat

 

(U) United Nations Organizations

World Food Program (WFP)

United Nations University (UNU)

United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA)

United Nations Center for Human Settlements (UN HABITAT)

United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF)

United Nations Environment Program (UNEP)

United Nations Development Program (UNDP)

United Nations Fund for Population Activities (UNFPA)

 

(U) Regional Commissions

Economic Commission for Africa (ECA)

Economic Commission for Western Asia (ESCWA)

Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP)

Economic Commission for Latin America (ECLAC)

 

II. (U) ALL UNITED NATIONS PEACEKEEPING OPERATIONS AND OBSERVER MISSIONS

 

(Alphabetized by Region)

 

(U) AFRICAN AFFAIRS (AF)

 

(U) CENTRAL AFRICAN REPUBLIC - MINUSCA

United Nations Integrated Multidimensional Mission in the Central African Republic

April 2014 - to present

 

(U) DARFUR – UNAMID

United Nations Africa Mission in Darfur

July 2007 – to present

 

(U) DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF CONGO – MONUSCO

United Nations Organization Stabilization Mission in the Democratic Republic         of the Congo

July 2010 – to present

 

(U) LIBERIA - UNMIL

United Nations Observer Mission in Liberia

September 1993 - to present

 

(U) MALI – MINUSMA

United Nations Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in Mali

April 2013 – to present

 

(U) SUDAN /SOUTHERN SUDAN – UNISFA

United Nations Interim Security Force for Abyei

June 2011 - to present

 

(U) SOUTHERN SUDAN - UNMISS

United Nations Mission in the Republic of South Sudan

July 2011 - to present

 

(U) EUROPEAN AND EURASIAN AFFAIRS (EUR)

 

(U) CYPRUS - UNFICYP

United Nations Peacekeeping Force in Cyprus

March 1964 - to present

 

(U) KOSOVO - UNMIK

United Nations Interim Administration Mission in Kosovo

June 1999 - to present

 

(U) NEAR EASTERN AFFAIRS (NEA)

 

(U) GOLAN HEIGHTS - UNDOF

United Nations Disengagement Observer Force

June 1974 - to present

 

(U) LEBANON - UNIFIL

United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon

March 1978 to present

 

(U) MIDDLE EAST - UNTSO

United Nations Truce Supervision Organization

June 1948 to present

 

(U) WESTERN SAHARA - MINURSO

United Nations Mission for the Referendum in Western Sahara

September 1991 - to present

 

(U) SOUTH AND CENTRAL ASIAN AFFAIRS (SCA)

 

(U) INDIA/PAKISTAN - UNMOGIP

United Nations Military Observer Group in India and Pakistan

January 1949 - to present

 

(U) WESTERN HEMISPHERE AFFAIRS (WHA)

(U) HAITI - MINUJUSTH

United Nations Transition Mission in Haiti

August 1997 to present

9 FAM 402.3-8  (U) NORTH ATLANTIC TREATY ORGANIZATION (NATO) Representatives, Officials, and Employees – NATO Visas

9 FAM 402.3-8(A)  (U) Statutory and Regulatory Authority

9 FAM 402.3-8(A)(1)  (U) Code of Federal Regulations

(CT:VISA-362;   05-04-2017)

(U) 22 CFR 41.12; 22 CFR 41.25.

9 FAM 402.3-8(A)(2)  (U) Treaties and Agreements

(CT:VISA-78;   03-04-2016)

(U) Article III, Agreement on the Status of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, National Representatives and International Staff; Agreement Between the Parties to the North Atlantic Treaty Regarding the Status of Their Forces; and the Protocol on the Status of International Military Headquarters Set Up Pursuant to the North Atlantic Treaty.

9 FAM 402.3-8(B)  (U) General Information on NATO Visa Classification

9 FAM 402.3-8(B)(1)  (U) In General

(CT:VISA-362;   05-04-2017)

(U) NATO visas are regulated by 22 CFR 41.12 and 41.25.  NATO-1 through NATO-5 visas are appropriate for aliens seeking admission to the United States under the Agreement on the Status of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, national representatives to, and staff of NATO traveling to the United States on behalf of NATO (and their immediate family or dependents).  NATO-6 visas are appropriate for members of a civilian component accompanying a force entering in accordance with the provisions of the NATO Status of Forces Agreements or members of a civilian component attached to or employed by an Allied Headquarters under the Protocol on the Status of International Military Headquarters (and their dependents).

9 FAM 402.3-8(B)(2)  (U) Categories of NATO Visas

(CT:VISA-78;   03-04-2016)

(U) The following symbols are used for NATO visa classification and can be found in 22 CFR 41.12:

NATO 1

Principal Permanent Representative of Member State to NATO (including any of its Subsidiary Bodies) Resident in the U.S. and Resident Members of Official Staff; Secretary General, Assistant Secretaries General, and Executive Secretary of NATO; Other Permanent NATO Officials of Similar Rank, or Immediate Family

NATO 2

Other Representative of member state to NATO (including any of its Subsidiary Bodies) including Representatives, Advisers, and Technical Experts of Delegations, or Immediate Family; Dependents of Member of a Force Entering in Accordance with the Provisions of the NATO Status-of-Forces Agreement or in Accordance with the provisions of the “Protocol on the Status of International Military Headquarters”; Members of Such a Force if Issued Visas

NATO 3

Official Clerical Staff Accompanying Representative of Member State to NATO (including any of its Subsidiary Bodies), or Immediate Family

NATO 4

Official of NATO (Other Than Those Classifiable as NATO1), or Immediate Family

NATO 5

Experts, Other Than NATO Officials Classifiable Under NATO4, Employed in Missions on Behalf of NATO, and their Dependents

NATO 6

Member of a Civilian Component Accompanying a Force Entering in Accordance with the Provisions of the NATO Status-of-Forces Agreement; Member of a Civilian Component Attached to or Employed by an Allied Headquarters Under the “Protocol on the Status of International Military Headquarters” Set Up Pursuant to the North Atlantic Treaty; and their Dependents

NATO 7

Attendant, Servant, or Personal Employee of NATO1, NATO2, NATO3, NATO4, NATO5, and NATO6 Classes, or Immediate Family

9 FAM 402.3-8(B)(3)  (U) Qualifying for a NATO Visa

(CT:VISA-362;   05-04-2017)

(U) 22 CFR 41.25 provides:

(a)  (U) Classification.  An alien shall be classified under the symbol NATO–1, NATO–2, NATO–3, NATO–4, or NATO–5 if you are satisfied that the alien is seeking admission to the United States under the applicable provision of the Agreement on the Status of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, National Representatives and International Staff, or is a member of the immediate family (see 9 FAM 402.3-4(J)) or dependent (as defined in 9 FAM 402.3-8(F) or (G)) of an alien classified NATO–1 through NATO–5.

(b)  (U) Armed services personnel.  Armed services personnel entering the United States in accordance with the provisions of the Agreement Between the Parties to the North Atlantic Treaty Regarding the Status of Their Forces or in accordance with the provisions of the Protocol on the Status of International Military Headquarters Set Up Pursuant to the North Atlantic Treaty may enter the United States under the appropriate treaty waiver of documentary requirements contained in 22 CFR 41.1 (d) or (e). If a visa is issued it is classifiable under the NATO–2 symbol.

(c)  (U) Dependents of armed services personnel.  Dependents of armed services personnel referred to in paragraph (b) of this section shall be classified under the symbol NATO–2.

(d)  (U) Members of civilian components and dependents.  Alien members of a civilian component accompanying a force entering in accordance with the provisions of the NATO Status-of-Forces Agreement, and dependents (as defined in 9 FAM 402.3-8(G)), or alien members of a civilian component attached to or employed by an Allied Headquarters under the Protocol on the Status of International Military Headquarters, and dependents (as defined in 9 FAM 402.3-8(F)) shall be classified under the symbol NATO–6.

(e)  (U) Attendant, servant, or personal employee of an alien classified NATO–1 through NATO–6.  An alien attendant, servant, or personal employee of an alien classified NATO–1 through NATO–6, and any member of the immediate family (see 9 FAM 402.3-4(J)) of such attendant, servant, or personal employee, shall be classified under the symbol NATO–7.  (See 9 FAM 402.3-9.)

9 FAM 402.3-8(C)  (U) Countries Signatory to NATO Agreements

(CT:VISA-78;   03-04-2016)

a. (U) Parties to North Atlantic Treaty and Agreement of Status of NATO, National Representatives and International Staff:  The following countries are currently parties to the North Atlantic Treaty signed in Washington on April 4, 1949, and also have ratified the Agreement on the Status of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, National Representatives and International Staff:

Albania

Belgium

Bulgaria

Canada

Czech Republic

Denmark

Estonia

France

Germany

Greece

Hungary

Iceland

Italy

Latvia

Lithuania

Luxembourg

Netherlands

Norway

Poland

Portugal

Romania

Slovakia

Slovenia

Spain

Turkey

United Kingdom

United States

 

b. (U) Parties to NATO Status of Forces Agreement:  All countries mentioned in paragraph a above and Croatia are parties to the Agreement Between the Parties to the North Atlantic Treaty regarding the Status of their Forces (the NATO Status of Forces Agreement).

c.  (U) Parties to Protocol on Status of International Military Headquarters:  With the exception of Canada and France, all countries mentioned in paragraph a. above and Croatia are parties to the Protocol on the Status of International Military Headquarters Set Up Pursuant to the North Atlantic Treaty.

9 FAM 402.3-8(D)  (U) Passport and Visa Exemptions for Certain NATO Personnel

(CT:VISA-78;   03-04-2016)

(U) See 22 CFR 41.1(d) and 22 CFR 41.1(e) for provisions regarding NATO personnel exempted from passport and visa requirements. 

9 FAM 402.3-8(E)  (U) Applying NATO Status of Forces Agreement

(CT:VISA-78;   03-04-2016)

(U) The U.S. Senate gave its advice and consent to ratification of the NATO Status of Forces Agreement with the following statement:

It is the understanding of the Senate, which understanding inheres in its advice and consent to the ratification of the Agreement, that nothing in the Agreement diminishes, abridges, or alters the right of the United States of America to safeguard its own security by excluding or removing persons whose presence in the United States is deemed prejudicial to its safety or security, and that no person whose presence in the United States is deemed prejudicial to its safety or security shall be permitted to enter or remain in the United States.

9 FAM 402.3-8(F)  (U) Definitions in Protocol on Status of International Military Headquarters

(CT:VISA-78;   03-04-2016)

(U) The Protocol on the Status of International Military Headquarters Set Up Pursuant to the North Atlantic Treaty provides in part:

Article 1 - In the present Protocol the expression:

(a)  “The Agreement” means the Agreement signed in London on 19th June, 1951, by the Parties to the North Atlantic Treaty regarding the Status of their Forces;

(b)  “Supreme Headquarters” means Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers in Europe, Headquarters of the Supreme Allied Commander Atlantic and any equivalent international military Headquarters set up pursuant to the North Atlantic Treaty;

(c)  “Allied Headquarters” means any Supreme Headquarters and any international military Headquarters set up pursuant to the North Atlantic Treaty which is immediately subordinate to a Supreme Headquarters; and

(d)  “North Atlantic Council” means the Council established by Article 9 of the North Atlantic Treaty or any of its subsidiary bodies authorized to act on its behalf.”

Article 3 - For the purpose of applying the Agreement to an Allied Headquarters the expressions “force”, “civilian component” and “dependent”, wherever they occur in the Agreement, shall have the meanings set out below:

(a)  “Force” means the personnel attached to the Allied Headquarters who belong to the land, sea or air armed services of any Party to the North Atlantic Treaty;

(b)  “Civilian component” means civilian personnel who are not stateless persons, nor nationals of any State which is not a Party to the Treaty, nor nationals of, nor ordinarily resident in the receiving State, and who are (i) attached to the Allied Headquarters and in the employ of an armed service of a Party to the North Atlantic Treaty or (ii) in such categories of civilian personnel in the employ of the Allied Headquarters as the North Atlantic Council shall decide; and

(c)  “Dependent” means the spouse of a member of a force or civilian component, as defined in sub-paragraphs (a) and (b) of this paragraph, or a child of such member depending on him or her for support.

9 FAM 402.3-8(G)  (U) Definitions in NATO Status of Forces Agreement

(CT:VISA-78;   03-04-2016)

(U) The NATO Status of Forces Agreement provides in part:

Article I - In this Agreement the expression:

(a)  “Force” means the personnel belonging to the land, sea, or air armed services of one Contracting Party when in the territory of another Contracting Party in the North Atlantic Treaty area in connection with their official duties, provided that the two Contracting Parties concerned may agree that certain individuals, units, or formations shall not be regarded as constituting or included in a “force” for the purposes of the present Agreement;

(b)  “Civilian component” means the civilian personnel accompanying a force of a Contracting Party who are in the employ of an armed service of that Contracting Party, and who are not stateless persons, nor nationals of any State which is not a Party to the North Atlantic Treaty, nor nationals of, nor ordinarily resident in, the State in which the force is located; and

(c)  “Dependent” means the spouse of a member of a force or of a civilian component, or a child of such member depending on him or her for support.

9 FAM 402.3-8(H)  (U) Readmitting into United States Alien Dependents of Members of U.S. Force or Civilian Component Stationed in Territory of Member State of NATO

(CT:VISA-78;   03-04-2016)

a. (U) Paragraph 5 of Article III of the Agreement Between the Parties to the North Atlantic Treaty regarding the Status of their Forces provides as follows:

“If the receiving State has requested the removal from its territory of a member of a force, or civilian component or has made an expulsion order against an ex-member of a force or of a civilian component or against a dependent of a member or ex-member, the authorities of the sending State shall be responsible for receiving the person concerned within their own territory or otherwise disposing of him outside the receiving State. This paragraph shall apply only to persons who are not nationals of the receiving State and have entered the receiving State as members of a force or civilian component or for the purpose of becoming such members, and to the dependents of such persons.”

b. (U) Therefore, DHS has agreed to parole into the United States an alien dependent of a member of the Armed Forces of the United States or U.S. civilian component stationed abroad under the Status of Forces Agreement, who is seeking to return to the United States and is found ineligible to receive a visa. The applicant for admission must return to the U.S. port of entry by means of a government vessel or aircraft in order to overcome the restriction imposed by INA 273, and must possess documents establishing identity and eligibility for parole. The status of individuals paroled into the United States in this manner is determined in normal immigration proceedings after parole.

9 FAM 402.3-8(I)  (U) Issuing NATO-7 Visa to Attendants and Personal Employees

(CT:VISA-78;   03-04-2016)

a. (U) Wilberforce Act Requirements:  See 9 FAM 402.3-9(C)(1) for general information. See 9 FAM 402.3-9(C)(2) for information about Wilberforce Act enforcement and consular officer responsibilities.

b. (U) Interview Required:  All applicants for NATO-7 visas must be interviewed, regardless of whether the applicant has been issued a previous visa in the same classification to work for the same employer.  The interview of a NATO-7 applicant must be conducted outside the presence of the employer or recruitment agent.

c.  (U) Reciprocity:  NATO-7 visas are not limited to nationals from NATO party countries.  The attendants, servants, or personal employees of an alien classified NATO-1 through NATO-6 may be issued a NATO-7 visa in a passport of a non-member country.  However, only NATO party countries’ reciprocity schedules provide data for NATO visas.  Therefore, the number of entries, fees, and validity for personal employees from non-member NATO countries seeking a NATO-7 visa is based on the A-3 data provided in the reciprocity schedule of the respective country of the NATO-7 alien.  (See 9 FAM 403.9-4(C).)

9 FAM 402.3-8(J)  (U) Issuing NATO Visas to Immediate Family and Dependents Not Possessing Citizenship of a NATO Member Country

(CT:VISA-362;   05-04-2017)

(U) Immediate family members and dependents of NATO status holders are eligible for NATO visas even if they are citizens of a non-member country.  If the immediate family member or dependent of a NATO status holder is a permanent resident of the sending country, the number of entries, fees, and validity for the immediate family member/dependent is based on the reciprocity schedule of the NATO principal alien.  If the immediate family member/dependent is not a permanent resident of the sending country, the number of entries, fees, and validity is based on the A-2 data provided in the reciprocity schedule of the immediate family member's/dependent’s country of nationality.

9 FAM 402.3-9  (U) Attendants, Servants, and Personal Employees of Officials - A-3, C-3, G-5, and NATO-7 Visas

9 FAM 402.3-9(A)  (U) Statutory and Regulatory Authority

9 FAM 402.3-9(A)(1)  (U) Immigration and Nationality Act

(CT:VISA-485;   01-09-2018)

(U) INA 101(a)(15)(A)(iii) (8 U.S.C. 1101(a)(15)(A)(iii)); INA 101(a)(15)(C) (8 U.S.C. 1101(a)(15)(C)); INA 212(d)(8) (8 U.S.C. 1182(d)(8)); INA 101(a)(15)(G)(v) (8 U.S.C. 1101(a)(15)(G)(v)).

9 FAM 402.3-9(A)(2)  (U) Code of Federal Regulations

(CT:VISA-362;   05-04-2017)

(U) 22 CFR 41.21; 22 CFR 41.22; 22 CFR 41.23; 22 CFR 41.24; 22 CFR 41.25.

9 FAM 402.3-9(A)(3)  (U) Public Law

(CT:VISA-485;   01-09-2018)

(U) Section 301 of the Visa Waiver Permanent Program Act (Public Law 106-396); Section 203 of the William Wilberforce Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act of 2008 (WWTVPRA) (Public Law 110-457).

9 FAM 402.3-9(B)  (U) Basis for Classification

9 FAM 402.3-9(B)(1)  (U) Aliens Entitled to A-3, C-3, G-5, or NATO-7 Visa Classification

(CT:VISA-601;   06-07-2018)

a. (U) Eligibility Requirements:  If the applicant qualifies for the visa classification, you may issue an A-3, C-3, G-5, or NATO-7 visa, respectively, to the personal employee of an alien in the A-1 or A-2 category (A-3 visa), C-3 category (C-3 visa), G-1 through G-4 category (G-5 visa), or NATO-1 through NATO-6 category (NATO-7 visa).  To qualify for the A-3, C-3, G-5, or NATO-7 visa as a domestic employee the following requirements must be met:

(1)  (U) An A-3 or G-5 applicant must be pre-notified to the Office of the Chief of Protocol (Protocol) or the United States Mission to the United Nations (USUN) and listed in The Office of Foreign Missions Information System (TOMIS) unless an exception in 9 FAM 402.3-9(B)(2) paragraph e applies;

(2)  (U) An applicant must have a written contract with the current or prospective employer that meets the specific requirements in 9 FAM 402.3-9(B)(3) and the applicant must understand the terms of the contract;

(3)  (U) The applicant will receive the minimum wage and will be provided working conditions that are in accordance with U.S. labor laws (see 9 FAM 402.3-9(B)(4)); and,

(4)  (U) The applicant overcomes his or her burden of proof in demonstrating to you that he or she will perform a specific job as described in the contract and is capable of performing such work, the applicant overcomes any presumptions of ineligibility, if applicable, and the applicant and the employer have entered into a bona fide employer-employee relationship (see 9 FAM 402.3-9(B)(5)).

(U) In addition:

(5)  (U) The applicant must present a diplomatic note from the appropriate foreign government office, mission, international organization, or NATO authority that meets the requirements in 9 FAM 402.3-4(C)

(6)  (U) You must conduct a personal interview with the applicant outside the presence of the employer or any recruitment agent; 

(7)  (U) You must also ensure that the applicant is aware of his/her rights as set out in the William Wilberforce Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act of 2008 (WWTVPRA) (Public Law 110-457) pamphlet, including that you confirm at the visa interview that the applicant has received, read, and understood the contents of the information pamphlet, and that you provide a copy of the pamphlet, and offer to answer any questions the applicant may have as needed (see 9 FAM 402.3-9(C) below); and,

(8)  (U) These applicants are not exempt from any visa ineligibility ground (see 9 FAM 402.3-9(B)(6)).

b. (U) Employer Nonimmigrant Visa or Status:  You may not issue a visa to a domestic employee under this provision unless the employer already is in "A", "G", or "NATO" nonimmigrant visa status in the United States, or has an A, C-3, G, or NATO visa and will be traveling with, or in advance of, the domestic employee to take up a new diplomatic assignment or otherwise engage in official duties appropriate on such A, C-3, G, or NATO visa.  You should link the applicant's case with the employer's visa record.   

c.  (U) Personal Employees of Permanent Residents Not Eligible:  You may not issue an A-3, G-5, or NATO-7 visa to an applicant employed by an individual who has permanent resident status in the United States, as provided in INA 247(b) or in 22 CFR 40.203.  The alien employee of a U.S. permanent resident must apply for an H-2B NIV or an appropriate IV for the purpose of working for the employer in the United States.  (See also 9 FAM 402.3-4(J)(7).)

9 FAM 402.3-9(B)(2)  (U) TOMIS Pre-Notification Required

(CT:VISA-601;   06-07-2018)

a. (U) TOMIS Pre-Notification Required For Most A-3 and G-5 Applicants:  Unless the applicant is covered by an exception in paragraph e, below, you may not issue an A-3 or G-5 visa to an applicant who is not pre-notified to Protocol or USUN (for domestic employees employed by personnel accredited to and/or employed by the UN) and listed in TOMIS as “pre-notified” (for new proposed employees) or “active” (for renewing A-3 or G-5 employees continuing to work for the same employer).  The foreign mission or international organization must submit a pre-notification form to Protocol via e-Gov or to USUN by email (UNDomesticWorkers@state.gov)You should direct all pre-notification questions to Protocol (DomesticWorkers@state.gov) or USUN (UNDomesticWorkers@state.gov), respectively.

b. (U) Accessing TOMIS:  TOMIS is available in the Consular Consolidated Database (CCD) under the “Other Agencies/Bureaus” menu.  To find a record in TOMIS, you may search by surname and either given name, nationality, visa, or country/organization; or with an eight-digit personal identification number (PID), if available, which is issued to each person pre-notified and registered with Protocol or USUN. If a record is not appearing in TOMIS, you should contact Protocol (DomesticWorkers@state.gov) or USUN (UNDomesticWorkers@state.gov), respectively.

c.  (U) Immediate Family Members of Domestic Employees:  Immediate family members of domestic employees seeking a derivative A-3 or G-5 visa are rare and should be duly scrutinized.  In determining whether an immediate family member qualifies as a derivative, you should consider that immediate family members are not authorized to work in the United States, including in the home of the foreign government official or employee (or IO employee), unless the foreign mission or international organization separately notified Protocol or USUN of the immediate family member as a domestic employee of such mission member and provided the applicant independently qualifies as a domestic employee.  Accordingly, you must ensure that the wages earned by the domestic employee are sufficient to support any accompanying or following-to-join immediate family members of the domestic employee.  You should also ensure the proposed place of residence of the domestic employee and any immediate family members in the United States are consistent with the place of employment.  Also consider whether the proposed place of residence, such as the home of the domestic worker's employer, places minor children at risk for potential exploitation, e.g., by requiring the child to engage in uncompensated work around the residence.  Except in cases specified in paragraph e, you must confirm that all immediate family members of the domestic employee accompanying or following-to-join the domestic employee are pre-notified to Protocol (or USUN) and, if not included in the domestic employee’s initial pre-notification request are separately pre-notified to Protocol (or USUN) before issuing visas to such immediate family members.  The immediate family members' names will be listed in TOMIS under the A-3 or G-5 principal's record once Protocol (or USUN) has received and accepted the immediate family member's pre-notification. 

d. (U) Refusing Visas if Not in TOMIS:  If an A-3 or G-5 visa applicant is not listed in TOMIS as either “pre-notified” or “active”, you must refuse the case under INA 221(g) pending the individual’s inclusion in TOMIS (see exception to TOMIS requirement below in paragraph e).  You may not issue an A-3 or G-5 visa to an applicant who is required to be registered in TOMIS upon mere presentation of a diplomatic note.  You also may not issue B-1 visas to allow the domestic employee to travel on an “emergency” basis.  Post must check TOMIS periodically to see if the employee has been added. If the employer or applicant advises that a pre-notification request was submitted and it is not showing in TOMIS, contact CA/VO/F and CA/VO/DO/DL.  CA/VO will check with Protocol (or USUN) on the status of the pre-notification request.

e. (U) Exception to TOMIS Pre-Notification Requirement:  A-3 and G-5 applicants accompanying an employer who is on a temporary assignment of less than 90 days are not required to be pre-notified and listed in TOMIS.  NATO-7 applicants are also not required to be listed in TOMIS.  However, if you receive an A-3 or G-5 application from a domestic employee who is not pre-notified in TOMIS and who is planning to work for 90 days or more for a foreign government official or employee (or IO employee) who has been accredited as an employee at a mission, request guidance via email to CA/VO/L/A and CA/VO/DO/DL before issuing the visa. 

9 FAM 402.3-9(B)(3)  (U) Contract Requirements

(CT:VISA-485;   01-09-2018)

a. (U) You may not issue or renew an A-3, C-3, G-5, or NATO-7 visa unless the visa applicant has executed a contract with the employer or prospective employer and such contract includes each of the provisions described in paragraph (c) below.  In each case, an employee applying for an A-3, C-3, G-5, or NATO-7 visa must present a copy of the employment contract, which must be in a language understood by the applicant and signed by both the applicant and the employer.  If the contract is not in English, an accurate English-language translation must be attached.  As appropriate, you should ask questions about the terms of the contract and the intended employment to confirm that the applicant understands the terms of the contract and is traveling for the stated purpose.  Post must scan the employment contract and, as applicable, an English translation of the contract, and attach the scanned document to the application record in NIV.

b. (U) Wilberforce Contract Requirements for A-3 and G-5 Applicants:  The WWTVPRA requires that a visa may not be issued unless there is an executed contract between the employer and employee and expressly provides that such contract must include:

(1)  (U) an agreement by the employer to abide by all Federal, State, and local laws in the United States;

(2)  (U) information on the frequency and form of payment, work duties, weekly work hours, holidays, sick days, and vacation days; and

(3)  (U) an agreement by the employer not to withhold the passport, employment contract, or other personal property of the employee.”

(4)  (U) The Department requires additional contract terms.  Both the terms required by the WWTVPRA and the additional contract terms are set forth below as "Required Contract Terms".

c.  (U) Required Contract Terms:  The Department strongly encourages employers of A-3 and G-5 domestic employees to use the employment contract template developed by the Department and available at A3 and G-5 Employment Contract Template.  The employment contract template includes all mandatory contract terms.  Regardless of whether the contract template is used, the contract must contain the following provisions:

(1)  (U) Parties:  The contract must identify the parties to the contract. 

(a)  (U) The contract should provide the following information for the employer: name, rank/title, duty office, and residence address of the employer. 

(b)  (U) The contract should provide the following information for the employee: name, date of birth, and nationality.  

(c)  (U) The contract must also include:

(i)     (U) any information regarding the employee’s relationship to the employer,

(ii)    (U) whether the employee has previously worked for the employer, and

(iii)    (U) whether the employee has previously worked as a domestic worker. 

      (Please note that the employee is not required to be unrelated to the employer or to have previously worked for the employer or as a domestic employee, but such information may be helpful in establishing qualification for the visa classification sought.)

(2)  (U) General Provisions:  The contract must require, explicitly:

(a)  (U) that two identical copies of the contract will be signed by the parties, and each party will receive a copy of the contract;

(b)  (U) that any change to the contract must be in writing and signed by both parties; and

(c)  (U) that the employer must promptly send an updated copy of the contract to his or her foreign mission or international organization, which should share it with the Department of State. 

(3)  (U) Employer Obligations: The contract must include provisions addressing the following requirements:  

(a)  (U) The employer agrees to abide by all Federal, state, and local laws while in the United States.

(b)  (U) No possession of passport or other documents or personal property:  The employer agrees not to take or control the employee’s passport, visa, employment contract, Department of State registration card, if applicable, or any other document or personal property of the employee for any reason.

(c)  (U) No deduction or charge for recruitment fees:  The employer will not charge the employee any fees associated with the recruitment of the employee or deduct from the employee’s salary any amounts to cover such recruitment fees.

(d)  (U) Employer must pay for travel:  The employer will pay the costs of the employee’s travel from the employee’s home country or country of current residence to the United States at the beginning of employment without deducting costs from the employee’s salary or using any other means to recover such costs.

(e)  (U) The employer will pay the costs of the employee’s travel from the United States to the employee’s home country or country of residence at the end of employment (for any reason) without deducting costs from the employee’s salary or using any other means to recover such costs.

(f)   (U) The employer will pay for any other costs of travel required of the employee by the employer without deducting these costs from the employee’s salary or using any other means to recover the costs.

(g)  (U) Compliance with Department of State registration program and assistance with status extension:  The employer will comply with any registration requirements of the Department of State and submit through their foreign mission or international organization extensions of status for the employee with sufficient time to allow such requests to be processed before the expiration of the I-94.

(4)  (U) Employee Obligation To Comply with U.S. Immigration Law:

      The employee will depart the United States at the end of the employment, as required under U.S. immigration law.

(5)  (U) Description of Duties and Place of Employment: 

(a)  (U) The contract must describe the work to be performed (e.g., child care, housekeeping, cooking, or gardening).

(b)  (U) Work for any other employer(s) prohibited:  The employee cannot work for another employer and the employer will not require any other employment beyond the terms of the contract.

(c)  (U) Number of domestic workers:  The contract should indicate the total number of domestic workers hired by the employer.

(d)  (U) The anticipated start work date of employment.

(6)  (U) Hours of Work: 

(a)  (U) Number of work hours per week:  The contract must state the number of hours the employee will generally work per week, which must be at least 35 hours. 

(b)  (U) Days off each week:  The contract must indicate the employee’s day(s) off, which must be at least one full day off each week. 

(c)  (U) Work Outside of Normal Work Schedule:  The employee and employer may agree that the employee may, on occasion, be required to work a different schedule than the normal work schedule.  Regardless of the schedule worked, the employer must agree to pay the employee for all hours worked according to the contracted wage terms and in compliance with U.S. law.

(d)  (U) Normal Work Schedule: The contract must describe in detail the employee’s normal work week schedule.  (Note: The Department’s contract template includes a chart that may be helpful in describing the normal work schedule, including when the employee is expected to start and stop work and when the employee is permitted a break(s).) 

(e)  (U) The contract must state that the employee will not be paid for sleeping time and other periods when the employee is free from all duties and when the employee can leave the property or remain on the property, without employment duties.

(f)   (U) The contract must state that if the employee is required to work during his/her scheduled sleeping or other free time, this time period must be counted and compensated as hours worked.  Any hours that the employee is required to remain in the residence in case needed for work will be considered working hours.

(g)  (U) Free to Leave Residence:  The contract must state that the employee is free to leave the employer’s residence during any non-work hours.

(7)  (U) Leave and Holiday:

(a)  (U) The contract must indicate the number of paid sick days the employee will receive during the calendar year.  If none, the contract must indicate so.

(b)  (U) The contract must indicate the number of vacation days the employee will receive during the calendar year.  If none, the contract must indicate so.

(c)  (U) The contract must indicate the number of paid holidays the employee will receive during the calendar year.  If none, the contract must indicate so.

(8)  (U) Wages, Taxes, Deductions, and Medical Insurance: 

(a)  (U) Rate of Pay:  The contract must state the regular hourly rate, which must be at least the greater of the minimum wage under U.S. federal, state, or local law.  For employers assigned to the United States for 90 days or more, the employer must agree to update the contract if the applicable minimum wage changes.  (See 9 FAM 402.3-9(B)(4) below regarding minimum wages.)

(b)  (U) When Paid:  The contract must state whether the employee will be paid weekly or every two weeks. 

(c)  (U) Overtime: The contract must state the rate the employer will pay the employee per hour for all hours that are considered overtime hours under U.S. federal, state, or local law.

(d)  (U) Opening of Bank Account:  If the employer will be in the United States for 90 days or more, the employee must agree to open a bank account in the United States in the employee’s name only within the first 30 days of arrival to the United States and provide proof of such bank account to the Department of State.  The employer must agree to assist with setting up this account as needed.

(e)  (U) Method of Payment:  If the employer will be in the United States for 90 days or more, the contract must state that after the first 30 days of employment, the employer will pay all wages by check or electronic transfer to the employee’s bank account. 

(f)   (U) Requirement to Provide Payslip:  The employer must agree to provide the employee with a payslip at the time of wage payment, noting the hourly wage, overtime wage, the number of hours worked in the pay period and, as appropriate, the allowable deductions to fulfill tax and social security obligations.

(g)  (U) Deductions:  The contract must state that the employer agrees that no money will be taken out of the employee’s salary except as required by law (e.g., tax and social security obligations, where applicable).

(h)  (U) Room and Board:  The contract must indicate whether the employee will/will not live at the employer’s residence (if the employer has a residence in the United States).  If the employee will live at the employer’s residence, the employer must agree to provide free room and board in addition to his/her salary and must agree, at a minimum, to ensure that the employee has adequate and reasonable accommodations provided to them, including a private bed and access to a bathroom, kitchen facilities, and proper food storage. 

(i)   (U) Tax Obligations:  The parties must agree to follow all relevant tax and social security obligations. 

(j)   (U) The contract must indicate whether the employer will provide/will not provide the employee with medical insurance. 

(9)  (U) Anti-Harassment: 

(a)  (U) The contract must state that the employee has the right to a workplace that is free from intimidation, harassment, and abuse of any kind, and has the right to leave employment if intimidated, harassed, or abused.

(b)  (U) The contract must state that the employer must not prohibit the employee from reporting intimidation, harassment, or abuse and must not retaliate in any way against the employee for enforcing his/her legal rights.

(10) (U) Resignation and Termination: 

(a)  (U) For employers who are assigned to a foreign mission or international organization for 90 days or more, the employer must agree to promptly notify the Department of State, through the mission, of the resignation or termination of the employee.

(b)  (U) The contract should include a provision that the employer or the employee may terminate the contract within a specified time period, or the employer may give the employee the equivalent weeks of pay instead of notice to terminate the contract.

(c)  (U) The employer must agree to pay all salary owed to the employee at the time of termination.

(11) (U) Record Keeping Requirements:

(a)  (U) The contract must state that the employer will keep an employment file and must agree, at a minimum, to include the following information and documents:

·         employee’s full name and, if applicable, social security number;

·         employee’s home address;

·         hours worked each workday and total hours worked each work week;

·         total wages paid each week to the employee, including the amount of any overtime paid; and,

·         copies of all employment contracts.

(b)  (U) The contract must state that the employer will keep all employment records for three years after the termination of the employee’s employment.

(c)  (U) The contract must state that the employer will maintain the required records and understands that the Department reserves the right to request proof of payment when there are any questions regarding the proper compensation of a domestic employee.

(12) (U) Other Terms Agreed to by the Employer and Employee or Required by State or Local Law: 

(a)  (U) The contract may include additional agreed-upon terms of employment, but those terms must comply with applicable U.S. Federal, State, and local law and Department policy. 

(b)  (U) The contract may not require binding arbitration to resolve disputes under the employment contract.

d. (U) Noncompliant Contracts and Refusals:  You generally refuse cases under INA 221(g) to allow the applicant an opportunity to address a contract-related deficiency, for example, where the applicant does not submit a contract, one of the above requirements in paragraph c is missing from the contract, or one of the provisions in the contract is not compliant with the minimum terms as stated above, e.g., the contract does not guarantee at least the minimum wage and working conditions that are compliant with U.S. labor laws or the applicant is stating that they are paid a wage other than that presented in the contract.  Alternatively, if you have reason to believe the applicant is unable or unwilling to address a contract-related deficiency, you may refuse the case under INA 214(b) because the applicant has not shown entitlement to A-3, C-3, G-5, or NATO-7 nonimmigrant status.  For questions about wage standards or other contract requirements, contact CA/VO/L/A and CA/VO/DO/DL via email for assistance.

9 FAM 402.3-9(B)(4)  Minimum Wage Requirements

(CT:VISA-619;   07-09-2018)

(U)   All A-3, G-5, and NATO-7 domestic employees must be paid the greater of the minimum wage under U.S. Federal, state, or local law. 

Updated As of January 2018*                                          

      This chart is provided as a guide.  Because minimum wage rates may change throughout the year, all rates should be verified at the time of visa issuance.

U.S. Federal Minimum Wage:  $7.25 

District of Columbia Minimum Wage:  $13.25

New York State Minimum Wage:  $10.40

    Long Island and Westchester:   $11.00

     New York City $12.00 (if employing 10 employees or less)

(NY wages scheduled to change December 31st each year through 2020)

Maryland State Minimum Wage:  $9.25

     Montgomery County:  $11.50 (if employing two or more domestic workers; apply state minimum wage if only one domestic worker) 

     Prince George’s County:  $10.75

(Baltimore County follows MD state minimum wage.)

Virginia State Minimum Wage:  $7.25

Illinois State Minimum Wage:  $8.25

     Chicago:  $11.00

California State Minimum Wage:  $11.00

     San Francisco:  $14.00

     (Los Angeles follows CA state minimum wage.)

Texas State Minimum Wage:  $7.25

     (Houston follows TX state minimum wage.)

Florida State Minimum Wage:  $8.25

     (Miami follows FL state minimum wage.)

    *Note:  The above chart only includes state and local areas where domestic workers registered with the Department most commonly reside.  State minimum wages can be found on the Department of Labor’s Minimum Wage Laws page or you can check with CA/VO/L/A, CA/VO/DO/DL or your VO/F desk officer. 

9 FAM 402.3-9(B)(5)  (U) Burden of Proof, Presumption of Ineligibility, and Other Considerations

(CT:VISA-601;   06-07-2018)

a. (U) Burden of Proof:  In accordance with INA 291, the burden of proof for A-3, C-3, G-5, or NATO-7 visa eligibility is on the applicant.  You must assess the credibility of the applicant and the evidence submitted to determine qualification for an A-3, C-3, G-5, or NATO-7 visa.  The applicant must demonstrate to your satisfaction that he or she will credibly engage in A-3, C-3, G-5, or NATO-7 activity under the contractual agreement (generally domestic or household work, but can also include services as a personal employee) and thereby maintain lawful status while in the United States. 

b. (U) Applicant will perform a specific job described in the contract and is capable of performing the work required:  In order to benefit from A-3, G-5, or NATO-7 status, the alien must be coming to the United States to perform a specific job as described in the employment contract, and must be capable of doing so, regardless of whether the alien has ever performed such a job in the past.  For example, an alien with a degree in computer science who is coming to work as a domestic employee may be issued an A-3, G-5, or NATO-7 visa if he or she clearly has the intent and ability to perform the job.  However, if you believe that the applicant is presented as a domestic employee for an alien in A, G, or NATO status, but will actually pursue other work, then the A-3, G-5, or NATO-7 visa should be denied under INA 214(b).  You should also determine whether such applicant is ineligible under INA 212(a)(6)(C)(i) for misrepresenting him or herself as a domestic employee.  Similarly, an A-3, G-5, or NATO-7 visa applicant who has recently had a period of unlawful presence in the United States, or who may have previously sought another visa and was refused under INA 214(b), must be carefully scrutinized to determine whether he or she actually intends to take up the stated employment.  However, if the previous brief period of unlawful presence is too short to render the applicant ineligible under INA 212(a)(9)(B) or (9)(C) or a prior 214(b) refusal exists, this is not a basis in itself to refuse the current A-3, G-5, or NATO-7 visa application in which the applicant otherwise qualifies for the visa and you believe the applicant plans to take up the stated employment.  (See 9 FAM 402.3-9(B)(6) below regarding applicable ineligibilities.)

c.  (U) Presumption that Applicant is Not Eligible; Employer’s Ability to Pay/Comply with Working Conditions:  Do not issue a visa unless you have reason to believe the employer will comply with all requirements relating to wages and working conditions.  You must presume that the applicant is not eligible if the employer is not the principal officer or deputy principal officer or does not carry the diplomatic rank of minister or higher, due to concerns about the employer's ability to compensate the applicant as required under U.S. law.  To rebut this presumption, the employer or the employee may provide additional information to demonstrate that the employer has sufficient funds to comply with minimum wage requirements as reflected in the contract.  The sending government or international organization may also be able to provide you with general information as to how their organization compensates its employees based on rank or position.  You must deny the visa under INA 214(b) if you are not convinced the employer can in fact meet the terms of the contract.   In assessing the sufficiency of the employer's funds, consider the number of his or her current or proposed employees and whether the employer is able to pay the applicant.  NOTE: IO officers and employees (G-4 visa holders) rarely hold the rank of minister or higher and therefore their compensation is unlikely to be sufficient to cover the cost of a personal employee.  Accordingly, you must determine that the employer has sufficient funds to provide the required minimum wages and work conditions to the G-5 visa applicant in order to issue the visa.

d. (U) Previous Instances of Non-Compliance; Presumption that Applicant is Not Eligible:  You may presume the applicant is not eligible for the visa and refuse the applicant under INA 214(b) if an employer has had previous instances of non-compliance with contracts with A-3, G-5, or NATO-7 employees, if there are credible allegations of abuse against this employer known to post or the Department, or if there has been a pattern of employee disappearance and possible violations of immigration laws following entry into the United States as these facts may indicate that the employer and the visa applicant do not intend to fulfill the provisions of the contract and enter into a bona fide employer-employee relationship.  Such information may be available to you in CLASS by searching for the employer.  To rebut the presumption that the applicant is not eligible, the employer and the visa applicant must convince you that such an incident is unlikely to reoccur and that the employer and the visa applicant intend to fulfill the provisions of the contract and enter into a bona fide employer-employee relationship.  The burden of proof ultimately remains on the applicant to establish eligibility. You may reach out via email to CA/VO/L/A and CA/VO/DO/DL for additional guidance.

e. (U) True Employer-Employee Relationship and Employing Family Members: You may not issue a visa unless you are satisfied that the visa applicant and the prospective employer are entering into a true employer-employee relationship for purposes of carrying out the duties set out in the contract in accordance with the terms of that contract.  Facts to consider include:

(1)  (U) Whether the applicant’s background, education skills, and employment history are consistent with the work described in the contract; and

(2)  (U) Whether the prospective employer and employee have a personal or familial relationship that might suggest they do not intend to enter into a bona fide employee-employer relationship.  Familial relationship should be indicated in the contract and duly scrutinized.   

9 FAM 402.3-9(B)(6)  (U) Applicable Ineligibilities; Refusals and Advisory Opinions

(CT:VISA-485;   01-09-2018)

a. (U) Applicants for A-3, C-3 (attendants, servants, and personal employees only), G-5, or NATO-7 visas are subject to all INA visa ineligibilities, including INA 214(b)An A-3, C-3 (only attendants, servants, and personal employees), G-5, and NATO-7 visa applicant must establish that he or she qualifies for the visa and must demonstrate that they:

(1)  (U) Are not intending immigrants;

(2)  (U) Have a residence abroad they do not intend to abandon; and

(3)  (U) Intend to depart from the United States upon completion of the approved activities.

b. (U) General rules for examining residence abroad are outlined in 9 FAM 401.1-3(F)(2), Residence Abroad Defined.  A-3, C-3 (only attendants, servants, and personal employees), G-5, and NATO-7 visa applicants commonly will not possess ties of property or family in the country in which they are working when applying for the visa.  Often the applicant may have accompanied the employer on previous assignments, and therefore will not be applying where they normally reside, and may expect to accompany the employer to a third country following the employer’s time in the United States.  In that case, the applicant need not demonstrate an intention to return to the country of initial visa application or where they normally reside.  In light of that fact, and that these personal employees may stay in the United States for a longer period than most other nonimmigrant visitors, the residence abroad requirement should not focus too heavily on the usual “ties;” rather, you may issue the visa if you are satisfied at the time of visa application that the applicant possesses the present intent to depart the United States at the conclusion of his or her approved activities and you are satisfied the applicant otherwise is qualified for the visa. 

c.  (U) Before issuing an A-3, C-3, G-5, or NATO-7 visa to an immediate family member of a domestic employee, you must be satisfied that the relationship between the domestic employee and the applicant exists and that the applicant can be expected to depart from the United States upon the termination of the domestic employee’s duties or status, as appropriate.  You must also be satisfied that such immediate family member will not seek unlawful employment while in the United States.  (See 9 FAM 402.3-9(B)(2).) 

d. (U) You are not required to obtain an advisory opinion before refusing an A-3, C-3, G-5, or NATO-7 visa application under INA 214(b) in cases where you believe the applicant does not intend to take up the position, or where a satisfactory contract is not provided, either initially or upon your request for an amended contract.  You should not hesitate to seek VO/L/A’s advice in questions of eligibility.   

e. (U) Mandatory Advisory Opinion for Principal Applicants Under the Age of 18:  You must obtain an AO from CA/VO/L/A before issuing an A-3, G-5, or NATO-7 visa to a domestic employee principal applicant under the age of 18.  The AO should include the date the applicant expects to begin working as a domestic employee in the United States, where the applicant will be performing such duties (state, city, and county if possible) and a description of the duties as described in the contract to allow CA/VO/L/A to review local labor laws. 

f.  (U) You should report to the Department any denials in the A-3, C-3, G-5, or NATO-7 category that are likely to prompt inquiries or complaints from the employer’s host government or international organization. 

g. (U) Additionally, if a particular A-3, C-3, G-5, or NATO-7 application raises fraud concerns, refer the case to the CA/VO/DO/DL, CA/VO/L/A, and CA/FPP.

9 FAM 402.3-9(B)(7)  (U) Visa Validity for A-3, C-3, G-5, and NATO-7 Visas

(CT:VISA-485;   01-09-2018)

(U) Generally, you should issue A-3, G-5, and NATO-7 visas for the maximum period established by the Reciprocity Schedule of the country concerned, which is generally 24 months; however, the validity may not exceed the validity of the relevant visa held by the employer, who must have an A-1 or A-2 (for A-3 employees), G-1 through G-4 (for G-5 employees), or NATO-1 through NATO-6 visa (for NATO-7 employees) visa. Similarly, you generally should issue C-3 visas to domestic employees of a foreign government official transiting the U.S. for official business (also holding a C-3 visa) for the maximum period of validity as indicated in the Reciprocity Schedule, except that the visa may not exceed the validity of the visa held by the C-3 employer. (See 9 FAM 402.3-8(I).)

9 FAM 402.3-9(C)  (U) William Wilberforce Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act Requirements (WWTVPRA)

9 FAM 402.3-9(C)(1)  (U) Information Pamphlet on Legal Rights of A-3, G-5, NATO-7, H, J, and Domestic Employees

(CT:VISA-485;   01-09-2018)

a. (U) The WWTVPRA requires the Secretary of State, in consultation with the Secretary of Homeland Security, the Attorney General, and the Secretary of Labor, to develop and distribute an information pamphlet and video on legal rights and available resources to aliens applying for A-3, G-5, H, or J visas, as well as to any personal or domestic servant (such as B-1 domestic or NATO-7) who is accompanying or following to join an employer.  8 U.S.C. 1375b.

b. (U) The contents of the information pamphlet, “Know Your Rights,” include a discussion of procedural issues, legal rights, and available legal resources concerning items such as:

(1)  (U) The nonimmigrant visa (NIV) application process, including information about the portability of employment;

(2)  (U) The legal rights of employment- or education-based NIV holders under Federal immigration, labor, and employment laws;

(3)  (U) The illegality of slavery, peonage, trafficking in persons, sexual assault, extortion, blackmail, and worker exploitation in the United States;

(4)  (U) The legal rights of immigrant victims of trafficking in persons and worker exploitation, including:

(a)  (U) The right of access to immigrant and labor rights groups;

(b)  (U) The right to seek redress in United States courts;

(c)  (U) The right to report abuse without retaliation;

(d)  (U) The right of the nonimmigrant not to relinquish possession of his or her passport to his or her employer;

(e)  (U) The requirement for an employment contract between the employer and the nonimmigrant; and

(f)   (U) An explanation of the rights and protections included in the mandatory employment contract.

(5)  (U) Information about services for victims of trafficking in persons and worker exploitation, including:

(a)  (U) Anti-trafficking in persons telephone hotlines operated by the Federal Government;

(b)  (U) The National Human Trafficking Resource Center hotline; and

(c)  (U) A general description of the types of victims’ services available for individuals subject to trafficking in persons or worker exploitation.

c.  (U) The pamphlet has been translated into certain foreign languages, based on the languages spoken by the greatest concentration of employment- and education-based NIV applicants.  The pamphlet is posted on the Department of State's travel information Web site and must be posted, in English and any relevant local language that the pamphlet has been translated into, on the Web site of every consular post.

9 FAM 402.3-9(C)(2)  (U) Your Responsibilities under the William Wilberforce Trafficking Victims Protection Act Reauthorization (WWTVPRA)

(CT:VISA-485;   01-09-2018)

a. (U) The WWTVPRA requires you to ensure that aliens applying for A-3, G-5, NATO-7, H, or J visas or a personal or domestic servant accompanying or following to join an employer (such as B-1 domestic), are made aware of their legal rights under Federal immigration, labor, and employment laws.  This includes information on the illegality of slavery, peonage, trafficking in persons, sexual assault, extortion, blackmail, and worker exploitation in the United States.  8 U.S.C. 1375b(e)At the time of the NIV interview: 

(1)  (U) You must confirm that the applicant has received, read, and understood the contents of the information pamphlet and offer to answer any questions the applicant may have regarding the contents of the pamphlet; or

(2)  (U) If the applicant has not received, read, or understood the pamphlet, provide a copy to the applicant and orally disclose its contents in a language that the applicant understands, and offer to answer any questions that the applicant may have regarding information contained in the pamphlet, as well as information described below regarding legal rights, U.S. law, and victim services.  Such an oral disclosure should include:

(a)  (U) The legal rights of employment-based nonimmigrants under Federal immigration, labor, and employment laws;

(b)  (U) The illegality of slavery, peonage, trafficking in persons, sexual assault, extortion, blackmail, and worker exploitation in the United States;

(c)  (U) The legal rights of nonimmigrant victims of trafficking in persons, worker exploitation, and other related crimes, including:

(i)     (U) The right of access to immigrant and labor rights groups;

(ii)    (U) The right to seek redress in United States courts; and

(iii)    (U) The right to report abuse without retaliation; and

(d)  (U) The availability of services for victims of human trafficking and worker exploitation in the United States, including victim services complaint hotlines.

b. (U) You must add a mandatory case note in the NIV system stating that the pamphlet was provided and that the applicant indicated he or she understood its contents.

c.  (U) You are also required to review the contents of the mandatory employment contract, as described in 9 FAM 402.3-9(B)(3), with the applicant.

d. (U) All applicants for A-3, G-5, or NATO-7 visas must be interviewed, regardless of whether the applicant has been issued a previous visa in the same classification to work for the same employer.  The interview of an A-3, G-5, or NATO-7 applicant must be conducted outside the presence of the employer or recruitment agent.

    Note:  No interview is required when the A-3, G-5 or NATO-7 applicant applies to extend his/her stay (I-94) domestically to continue working for the same employer.  However, the employee must provide a copy of the updated contract to the Department (CA/VO/DO/DL) that meets the requirements in 9 FAM 402.3-9(B)(3) paragraph c.

9 FAM 402.3-9(C)(3)  (U) Suspension of Processing of A-3 and G-5 Applications from Certain Foreign Missions and International Organizations

(CT:VISA-485;   01-09-2018)

a. (U) The Secretary of State shall suspend, for such period as the Secretary determines necessary, the issuance of A-3 visas or G-5 visas to applicants seeking to work for officials of a diplomatic mission or an international organization, if the Secretary determines that there is credible evidence that one or more employees of such mission or international organization have abused or exploited one or more nonimmigrants holding an A-3 visa or a G-5 visa, and that the diplomatic mission or international organization tolerated such actions.  8 U.S.C. 1375c.

b. (U) The Secretary may suspend the application of the limitation under paragraph (a) if the Secretary determines and reports to the appropriate Congressional committees that a mechanism is in place to ensure that such abuse or exploitation does not reoccur with respect to any alien employed by an employee of such mission or institution.

c.  (U) All visa processing posts will be advised when the Secretary has determined that A-3 or G-5 visa processing must be suspended for a specific diplomatic mission or international organization.

9 FAM 402.3-10  (U) nonimmigrant Visa Types: Regular, Diplomatic and Official

9 FAM 402.3-10(A)  (U) Statutory and Regulatory Authority

(CT:VISA-78;   03-04-2016)

(U) 22 CFR 41.26; 22 CFR 41.27.

9 FAM 402.3-10(B)  (U) Visa Type - In General

(CT:VISA-362;   05-04-2017)

(U) Visa type (diplomatic, official, and regular) is not the same as visa classification (e.g., A-1, A-2, G-1, G-4, etc.).  While purpose of travel is relevant for determining visa classification (except heads of state or heads of government and their immediate family members who are always classifiable A-1), an applicant's purpose of travel is irrelevant for determining qualification for a diplomatic type or official type visa.  Instead, you must determine that an applicant holds an authorized rank/position (or qualifies as immediate family of an applicant who holds an authorized rank/position).  For diplomatic type visa issuance, you must also ensure the applicant possesses a diplomatic passport or the equivalent of a diplomatic passport. You should issue a diplomatic type visa (see 9 FAM 402.3-10(C)) rather than an official type visa (see 9 FAM 402.3-10(D)) when possible. 

9 FAM 402.3-10(C)  (U) Diplomatic Type Visas

(CT:VISA-362;   05-04-2017)

(U) A diplomatic type visa is depicted on the visa foil under "Visa Type" with the letter "D", followed by the visa classification.  Regardless of visa classification an applicant would qualify for a diplomatic type visa if he/she possesses a diplomatic passport or the equivalent of a diplomatic passport and is within one of the categories listed in 22 CFR 41.26(c).

9 FAM 402.3-10(C)(1)  (U) Qualifying for a Diplomatic Type Visa Under 22 CFR 41.26

(CT:VISA-601;   06-07-2018)

a. (U) In order to qualify for a diplomatic type visa (regardless of visa classification) under this section of the regulation, an applicant must be in possession of a diplomatic passport or the equivalent of a diplomatic passport and be in one of the categories listed in 22 CFR 41.26(c).  Thus, possession of a diplomatic passport or the equivalent of a diplomatic passport, is not by itself sufficient to qualify for a diplomatic type visa under 22 CFR 41.26(c).  However, an applicant should possess a diplomatic passport or the equivalent of a diplomatic passport in order to qualify for a diplomatic type visa under 22 CFR 41.26(c)(1).

b. (U) Diplomatic Passport:  Diplomatic passport is defined in 22 CFR 41.26(a)(1) as “a national passport bearing that title and issued by a competent authority of a foreign government.” 

c.  (U) Equivalent of a diplomatic passport: Equivalent of a diplomatic passport is defined in 22 CFR 41.26(a)(3).  

d. (U) Categories Eligible to Receive Diplomatic Type Visas: In addition to possession of a diplomatic passport or equivalent of a diplomatic passport, an applicant must also be within one of the categories listed in 22 CFR 41.26(c). 

e. (U) Qualifying for a Diplomatic Type Visa Under 22 CFR 41.26(c)(1):  The majority of diplomatic type visas are issued pursuant to 22 CFR 41.26(c)(1), which includes the following categories:  

(i) Heads of states and their alternates;

(ii) Members of a reigning royal family;

(iii) Governors-general, governors, high commissioners, and similar high    administrative or executive officers of territorial unit, and their alternates;

(iv) Cabinet ministers and their assistants holding executive or administrative positions not inferior to that of the head of a departmental division, and their alternates;

(v) Presiding officers of chambers of national legislative bodies;

(vi) Justices of the highest national court of a foreign country;

(vii) Ambassadors, public ministers, other officers of the diplomatic service and consular officers of career;

(viii) Military officers holding a rank not inferior to that of a brigadier general in the United States Army or Air Force and Naval officers holding a rank not inferior to that of a rear admiral in the United States Navy;

(ix) Military, naval, air and other attaché and assistant attaché assigned to a foreign diplomatic mission;

(x) Officers of foreign-government delegations to international organizations so designated by Executive Order;

(xi) Officers of foreign-government delegations to, and officers of, international bodies of an official nature, other than international organizations so designated by Executive Order;

(xii) Officers of a diplomatic mission of a temporary character proceeding to or through the United States in the performance of their official duties;

(xiii) Officers of foreign-government delegations proceeding to or from a specific international conference of an official nature;

(xiv) Members of the immediate family of a principal alien who is within one of the classes described in paragraphs (c)(1)(i) to (c)(1)(xi) inclusive, of this section;

(xv) Members of the immediate family accompanying or following to join the principal alien who is within one of the classes described in paragraphs (c)(1)(xii) and (c)(1)(xiii) of this section;

(xvi) Diplomatic couriers proceeding to or through the United States in the performance of their official duties.

f.  (U) Qualifying for a Diplomatic Type Visa Under 22 CFR 41.26(c)(2):  Aliens classifiable G-4, if otherwise qualified, are eligible to receive a diplomatic type G-4 visa if accompanying one of the specific United Nations officers listed in 22 CFR 41.26(c)(2), which includes the following:

(i) The Secretary General of the United Nations;

(ii) An Under Secretary General of the United Nations;

(iii) An Assistant Secretary General of the United Nations;

(iv) The Administrator or the Deputy Administrator of the United Nations Development Program;

(v) An Assistant Administrator of the United Nations Development Program;

(vi) The Executive Director of the:

          (A) United Nation's Children's Fund;

          (B) United Nations Institute for Training and Research;

          (C) United Nations Industrial Development Organization;

(vii) The Executive Secretary of the:

          (A) United Nations Economic Commission for Africa;

          (B) United Nations Economic Commission for Asia and the Far East;

          (C) United Nations Economic Commission for Latin America;

          (D) United Nations Economic Commission for Europe;

(viii) The Secretary General of the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development;

(ix) The Director General of the Latin American Institute for Economic and Social Planning;

(x) The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees;

(xi) The United Nations Commissioner for Technical Cooperation;

(xii) The Commissioner General of the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East;

(xiii) The spouse or child of any nonimmigrant alien listed in paragraphs (c)(2)(i) through (c)(2)(xii) of this section.

g. (U) Qualifying for a Diplomatic Type Visa Under 22 CFR 41.26(c)(3):  22 CFR 41.26(c)(3) permits the Department, the Chief of a U.S. Diplomatic Mission, the Deputy Chief of Mission (DCM), the Counselor for Consular Affairs or the principal officer of a consular post not under the jurisdiction of a diplomatic mission to authorize the issuance of a diplomatic type visa to any individual alien or a class of aliens.  In practice, this authority is used very rarely, in exceptional cases.  Officers are strongly encouraged to consult CA/VO/DO/DL and CA/VO/F before exercising their authority under this section of the regulation.

h. (U) Note that the purpose of travel, which usually determines visa classification (A, G, B-1/B-2, etc.), is generally irrelevant for purposes of qualifying for a diplomatic type visa under 22 CFR 41.26(c).  For example, if the presiding officer of national legislature applied for a nonimmigrant visa to travel to the United States for pleasure using a diplomatic passport or the equivalent (see 22 CFR 41.26(c)(1)(v)), he or she would be issued a diplomatic type B-2 (or B-1/B-2) visa if otherwise qualified.  However, if any other member of a national legislature applied under the same circumstances, he or she would be issued an official type, not diplomatic type, B-2 (or B-1/B-2) visa if otherwise qualified (see 9 FAM 402.3-10(D)(1) below for official type visas).

i.  (U) You must also bear in mind that a diplomatic note is not required in order for an applicant to be issued a diplomatic type visa.

9 FAM 402.3-10(C)(2)  (U) Courtesies Attached to Diplomatic Type Visa

(CT:VISA-362;   05-04-2017)

a. (U) Designating a visa as a diplomatic type visa does not accord diplomatic privileges and immunities to the visa holder.  Rather, the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations and other international agreements are the basis for assessing whether an alien enjoys diplomatic privileges and immunities.  While neither visa classification nor visa type determines eligibility for privileges and immunities, in general, individuals falling within the A, C-3, G, and NATO classifications enjoy some level of privileges, exemptions and immunities, and any such privileges and immunities would attach regardless of whether the individual were issued a diplomatic type, official type or regular type visa.

b. (U) You should process applications for diplomatic type visas as quickly as possible.  In addition to the exemption from fees (see 9 FAM 402.3-10(C)(4) below), there is also a waiver of personal appearance that you, at your discretion, may grant to diplomatic type visa applicants (see 9 FAM 402.3-10(C)(5) below).  Note: Waiver of personal appearance does not mean that the applicant is also exempt from fingerprint requirements.  The applicant must qualify for fingerprint exemption on some other basis (see 9 FAM 303.7-4(B)).

c.  (U) At the POE, the holder of a diplomatic type visa may receive expeditious examination but otherwise must qualify for admission like other nonimmigrants.

9 FAM 402.3-10(C)(3)  (U) Diplomatic Relations Required for Diplomatic Type Visa

(CT:VISA-78;   03-04-2016)

(U) A consular officer must not issue a diplomatic type visa to any national of a country whose government does not have diplomatic relations with the United States unless the Department has provided authorization in reply to a request for an AO from post to CA/VO/L/A.

9 FAM 402.3-10(C)(4)  (U) Exemption from Fees

(CT:VISA-362;   05-04-2017)

a. (U) In accordance with 22 CFR 22.1 and 22 CFR 41.107(c)(1), all qualifying applicants for diplomatic type visas are exempt from both the application (MRV) and issuance (reciprocity) fees, regardless of visa classification.  This includes applications submitted for either official or non-official travel.  The word “qualifying” refers to an applicant who, if issued a visa, would receive a diplomatic type visa as defined in 22 CFR 41.26.  In this context, the word “qualifying” is not related to whether the visa is actually issued or refused.  Thus, if, for example, a foreign diplomat applied for a visa using a diplomatic passport or the equivalent (which would qualify him or her for a diplomatic type visa under 22 CFR 41.26(c)(vii)) in order to travel to the United States for pleasure (B visa classification), and you determine the applicant ineligible for a visa under, say, INA 214(b), the applicant would nevertheless be exempt from paying the MRV fee.  If the visa were issued, it would be a diplomatic type B visa, and the applicant would be exempt from paying the MRV fee and any reciprocity fee.

b. (U) In addition to the fee exemptions based on visa type in the preceding paragraph, there are also exemptions based on visa classification.  Note that under 22 CFR 41.107(c)(1) there are no application (MRV) or issuance (reciprocity) fees for applicants classifiable under the visa classification symbols A, C-2, C-3, G, or NATO, regardless of whether such applicants qualify for diplomatic type visas under 22 CFR 41.26.  These exemptions also apply to applicants in the A-3, G-5, or NATO-7 visa classifications.  The MRV fee exemption based on visa classification is granted regardless of whether the visa is issued or refused.  See 9 FAM 402.3-4(F).

9 FAM 402.3-10(C)(5)  (U) Exemption from Personal Appearance

(CT:VISA-601;   06-07-2018)

(U) At your discretion, you may waive personal appearance for a diplomatic type visa applicant.  (See 9 FAM 403.5-4(A).)  Note: Waiver of personal appearance does not mean that the applicant is exempt from fingerprint requirements.  The applicant must qualify for fingerprint exemption on some other basis.  (See 9 FAM 303.7-4(B).)

9 FAM 402.3-10(D)  (U) Official Type Visas

(CT:VISA-362;   05-04-2017)

(U) An official type visa is depicted on the visa foil under “Visa Type” with the letter “O”, followed by the visa classification.  Regardless of visa classification, an otherwise eligible applicant would qualify for an official type visa if within one of the categories listed in 22 CFR 41.27(c).  While the applicant is not required to have a diplomatic, official, service, or other passport which confirms their position or status with a foreign government or international organization to qualify for an official type visa, many applicants will have a passport reflecting their position with a foreign government or international organization when also applying for an A, C-3, G, or NATO visa and you should consider the lack of such passport when assessing the applicant’s eligibility for the visa classification sought.  An applicant may still qualify for an official type visa of any visa classification provided post can otherwise confirm the applicant is within one of the categories listed in 22 CFR 41.27(c). 

9 FAM 402.3-10(D)(1)  (U) Qualifying for an Official Type Visa Under 22 CFR 41.27

(CT:VISA-362;   05-04-2017)

a. (U) In order to qualify for an official type visa (regardless of visa classification) under this section of the regulation, an applicant must be in one of the categories listed in 22 CFR 41.27(c), which includes, but is not limited to, an official who would normally qualify for a diplomatic type visa under 22 CFR 41.26(c)(2) or an official in the A or G (other than G-3) visa classification, but cannot be issued a diplomatic type visa because they do not possess a diplomatic passport or the equivalent of a diplomatic passport as required by 22 CFR 41.26 and 9 FAM 402.3-10(C)(1) above. 

b. (U) Categories Eligible to Receive Official Type Visas: An applicant must be within one of the categories listed in 22 CFR 41.27(c). 

c.  (U) Qualifying for an Official Type Visa Under 22 CFR 41.27(c)(1):  An applicant who is not eligible for a diplomatic type visa, may qualify for an official type visa (regardless of visa classification) if the applicant is within one of the following categories:

(i) Aliens within a class described in 22 CFR 41.26(c)(2) who are ineligible to receive a diplomatic visa because they are not in possession of a diplomatic passport or its equivalent;

(ii) Aliens classifiable under INA 101(a)(15)(A);

(iii) Aliens, other than those described in 22 CFR 41.26(c)(3) who are classifiable under INA 101(a)(15)(G), except those classifiable under INA 101(a)(15)(G)(iii) unless the government of which the alien is an accredited representative is recognized de jure by the United States;

(iv) Aliens classifiable under INA 101(a)(15)(C) as nonimmigrants described in INA 212(d)(8);

(v) Members and members-elect of national legislative bodies;

(vi) Justices of the lesser national and the highest state courts of a foreign country;

(vii) Officers and employees of national legislative bodies proceeding to or through the United States in the performance of their official duties;

(viii) Clerical and custodial employees attached to foreign-government delegations to, and employees of, international bodies of an official nature, other than international organizations so designated by Executive Order, proceeding to or through the United States in the performance of their official duties;

(ix) Clerical and custodial employees attached to a diplomatic mission of a temporary character proceeding to or through the United States in the performance of their official duties;

(x) Clerical and custodial employees attached to foreign-government delegations proceeding to or from a specific international conference of an official nature;

(xi) Officers and employees of foreign governments recognized de jure by the United States who are stationed in foreign contiguous territories or adjacent islands;

(xii) Members of the immediate family, attendants, servants and personal employees of, when accompanying or following to join, a principal alien who is within one of the classes referred to or described in paragraphs (c)(1)(i) through (c)(1)(xi) inclusive of this section;

(xiii) Attendants, servants and personal employees accompanying or following to join a principal alien who is within one of the classes referred to or described in paragraphs (c)(1)(i) through (c)(1)(xiii) inclusive of 22 CFR 41.26(c)(2).

d. (U) Qualifying for an Official Type Visa Under 22 CFR 41.27(c)(2):  22 CFR 41.27(c)(2) permits the Department, the Chief of a U.S. Diplomatic Mission, the Deputy Chief of Mission (DCM), the Counselor for Consular Affairs or the principal officer of a consular post not under the jurisdiction of a diplomatic mission to authorize the issuance of an official type visa to any individual alien or a class of aliens provided the applicant does not qualify for a diplomatic type visa.  In practice, this authority is used very rarely, in exceptional cases.  Officers are strongly encouraged to consult CA/VO/DO/DL and CA/VO/F before exercising their authority under this section of the regulation.

e. (U) For issuance of A or G visa classifications, you may place an official type A or G visa in an official passport or a regular passport.  For example, if a member of the national legislature of a country that has diplomatic relations with the United States is traveling to the United States on official business, but only possesses an official or regular passport the member could be issued an A-2 official type visa. Regular and official passports must have 6 months of validity left on them at time of issuance (see 9 FAM 403.9-3(B)).

f.  (U) As with diplomatic type visas, you should submit to the Department visa cases of nationals of countries not having diplomatic relations with the United States.  (See 9 FAM 402.3-10(C)(3) above.)

9 FAM 402.3-10(D)(2)  (U) No Exemption from Fees

(CT:VISA-362;   05-04-2017)

(U) The exemption from fees for diplomatic type visas in 9 FAM 402.3-10(C)(4) above does not apply to official type visas, unless they qualify for a fee exemption on some other basis, such as receiving an A, G, or NATO visa.  (See 22 CFR 22.1, 22 CFR 41.107(C), and 9 FAM 402.3-4(F).)

9 FAM 402.3-10(D)(3)  (U) Exemption from Personal Appearance

(CT:VISA-362;   05-04-2017)

(U) At your discretion, personal appearance may be waived for an official type visa applicant.  See 9 FAM 403.5-4(A)Note: Waiver of personal appearance does not mean that the applicant is exempt from fingerprint requirements.  The applicant must qualify for fingerprint exemption on some other basis (see 9 FAM 303.7-4(B).)