9 FAM 402.4

Transit visas – C Visas

(CT:VISA-1156;   09-16-2020)
(Office of Origin:  CA/VO)

9 fam 402.4-1  statutory and regulatory citATIONS

9 FAM 402.4-1(A)  Immigration and Nationality Act

(CT:VISA-1;   11-18-2015)

INA 101(a)(15)(C) (8 U.S.C. 1101(a)(15)(C)); INA 212(d)(4)(C) (8 U.S.C. 1182(d)(4)(C)); INA 233 (8 U.S.C. 1223); INA 248 (8 U.S.C. 1258).

9 FAM 402.4-1(B)  Code of Federal Regulation

(CT:VISA-1;   11-18-2015)

22 CFR 41.71.

9 FAM 402.4-2  overview

(CT:VISA-1;   11-18-2015)

Transit (C) visas are nonimmigrant visas for persons traveling in immediate and continuous transit through the United States en route to another country, with few exceptions.

 9 FAM 402.4-3  Categories of C Visas

(CT:VISA-1;   11-18-2015)

22 CFR 41.12 identifies the following C visa classification symbols for aliens in transit through the United States in accordance with INA 101(a)(15)(C):

·         C-1 –Alien in Transit

·         C-1/D – Combined Transit and Crewmember visa

·         C-2 – Aliens in Transit to United Nations Headquarters District under section 11.(3), (4), or (5) of the Headquarters Agreement

·         C-3 – Foreign Government Official, Immediate Family, Attendant, Servant, or Personal Employee, in Transit.

9 FAM 402.4-4  Qualifying for C Visas

(CT:VISA-907;   08-01-2019)

a. An alien is classifiable as a nonimmigrant transit alien under INA 101(a)(15)(C) if you are satisfied that the alien:

(1) Intends to pass in immediate and continuous transit through the United States;

(2) Is in possession of a common carrier ticket or other evidence of transportation arrangements to the alien's destination;

(3) Is in possession of sufficient funds to carry out the purpose of the transit journey, or has sufficient funds otherwise available for that purpose; and

(4) Has permission to enter some country other than the United States following the transit through the United States, unless the alien submits satisfactory evidence that such advance permission is not required.

b. As used in INA 101(a)(15)(C), the term “immediate” is defined as a reasonably expeditious departure of the alien in the normal course of travel as the elements permit and assumes a prearranged itinerary without any unreasonable layover privileges.  (Page 43, House Report No. 1365 accompanying H.R. 5678, 82nd Congress, 2d Session.)  If the alien seeks layover privileges for purposes other than for transit through the United States, such as to visit friends or engage in sightseeing, the alien will have to qualify for the type of visa required for that purpose.  8 CFR 214.2(c)(3) provides that the period of stay cannot exceed 29 days.  Although the C-2 and C-3 visa classifications are exempt from most visa ineligibilities (see 9 FAM 402.4-7 and 9 FAM 402.4-8), the INA 214(b) and INA 212(a) ineligibilities do apply to both the C-1 and C-1/D visa classifications.

9 FAM 402.4-5  Visa for Passenger on Vessel Entering at U.S. Port

(CT:VISA-1;   11-18-2015)

An alien passenger embarking at a foreign port on a vessel which is proceeding to a foreign destination other than the United States and who has no intention of landing in the United States is nevertheless required to be in possession of a transit or other nonimmigrant visa if, during the course of the journey, the vessel makes port in the United States, since this constitutes an entry by the alien as contemplated in INA 101(a)(13).

9 FAM 402.4-6  C-1 Visas for Crewmen

(CT:VISA-1;   11-18-2015)

a. Crewmen joining vessel or aircraft:  See 9 FAM 402.8-6.

b. Coasting Officers:  See 9 FAM 402.8-5 for proper documentation of coasting officers.

c.  Transit Without Visa (TWOV) for Crewmen:  The Transit Without Visa (TWOV) program has been suspended indefinitely.

9 FAM 402.4-7  C-2 Visa for Transit to United Nations Headquarters District

(CT:VISA-1;   11-18-2015)

See 9 FAM 402.3-6 Officials in Transit – C-2 AND C-3 Visas.

9 FAM 402.4-8  C-3 Visas for Accredited Foreign Officials in Transit

(CT:VISA-1;   11-18-2015)

See 9 FAM 402.3-6 Officials in Transit – C-2 AND C-3 Visas.