The Department of State (DOS) previously announced an intent to issue visas within the US, which is now taking shape as the agency moves ahead with the implementation of a pilot program to allow nonimmigrant visa issuance domestically, potentially facilitating travel for thousands of workers in a work status such as H-1B and L-1.
In a recent interview, a DOS official has further clarified that the program is expected to start small, with only 20,000 visas to be issued in December, January and February, and will be available only to H and L visa holders initially (though other sources believe it will be limited only to principal H-1B beneficiaries).
Additionally, the pilot program is expected to initially benefit only those foreign nationals who would otherwise be eligible for a waiver of the in-person interview requirement and not subject to a reciprocity fee in the issuance of their visas.
We expect to know further details once the proposed rule, currently under review by the administration, is published in the federal register.
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