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Contacting the embassy about visa cases

Wednesday, September 26, 2012    

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Q: I tried to call the embassy to ask about my pending visa case, but every time I call, I just get put through to a recording. How can I talk with a person about my case?

A: The embassy does not take calls related to visa cases. Our policy is to respond to queries related to individual visa cases in writing, as we find that communicating by e-mail or post is the best way to ensure that you get the most accurate information as quickly as possible.

If you call the embassy with a question regarding a visa, you will first be directed to a recording. The information in that recording should be sufficient to answer the most frequently asked general questions regarding the visa process. If you have a question with regard to a specific case, however, that recording will direct you to write to us with your question, either by e-mail or through the post.

We encourage anyone with a question on a visa case to write to us by e-mail when possible. For questions related to a non-immigrant visa case, you can write to KingstonNIV@state.gov. For questions on an immigrant visa case, the appropriate e-mail address is KingstonIV@state.gov. We realise that some people don't have access to e-mail, so questions can also be directed to the embassy through the post. Address your letter to The Consular Section, US Embassy, 142 Old Hope Road, Kingston 6. You can also indicate an attention line, to either the Non-Immigrant Visa Unit or the Immigrant Visa Unit, as appropriate.

Why do we prefer to handle individual questions in writing rather than over the phone? Individual cases usually require someone accessing and reviewing your case file, which might not be possible when you call. If your case involves a complicated question, a consular officer may need to review the relevant regulations before determining the correct course of action. By taking your question in writing, we can be sure that it's routed to the appropriate person as quickly as possible. Lastly, when we receive and answer questions in writing, we know that both we and the questioner have a record of the exchange to which everyone can easily refer in any future correspondence.

We endeavour to keep visa applicants as informed as possible about the application process and the status of their cases. Any questions you have will be resolved as expeditiously as possible when you direct them to us either by e-mail or through the post. If you call with a particular question about a specific case, you will only be prolonging the process, as you will eventually be directed to write to us as above.

For more information about American Citizen Services, please visit our website, http://kingston.usembassy.gov/service.html.

The US Embassy staff in Kingston will answer questions you may have regarding the US Mission, including consular law, regulations and/or practice. In order to respect privacy, staff will not answer questions about specific visa applications. The embassy employs a visa appointment system, so it is only necessary for visa applicants to arrive 15 minutes before their scheduled appointment.

Send your questions to: editorial@jamaicaobserver.com and we will send them to the embassy.

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