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The US Department of State has announced that it is temporarily expanding eligibility of interview waivers – the ability of consular officers to issue Machine-Readable Visa (MRV) stamps to nonimmigrants without first requiring an in-person interview.
Interview waivers still apply only to those who are applying for a nonimmigrant visa of the same type they have already had – extension or amendment situations, typically. Where there had previously been a restriction that allowed interview waivers only for those whose prior visa had expired no more than 12 months ago, the new guidance expands this to 24 months from date the last visa expired.
The expanded order remains temporary, and remains in effect only up to March 31, 2021 – although the policy may be extended.
The order does not address the very limited nonimmigrant visa services available at many consular posts currently.