19 June 2015

Expect Travel Delays: Continued Tech Problems with Overseas Visa Systems

UPDATE: June 29, 2015 

On June 26, 2015, DOS has stated:

  • All visa-issuing embassies and consulates are now back online. They are scheduling visa interviews and issuing non-immigrant and immigrant visas.
  • They have issued more than 300,000 non-immigrant visas this week. DOS anticipates backlog will be gone by this week.
  • They are still experiencing problems with some online immigrant visa application forms. We are working around the clock to correct the issue.

UPDATE June 26, 2015

On June 25, 2015, DOS updated their alert with the following:

  • The Bureau of Consular Affairs reports that 165 posts, representing more than 85 percent of our nonimmigrant visa demand worldwide, are now online and issuing visas.
  • Posts overseas issued more than 82,000 visas on June 24.
  • Posts overseas have issued more than 238,000 non-immigrant visas this week. For context, if systems had been operating normally, posts would have issued approximately 540,000 visas since the outage started.
  • We will continue to bring additional posts online until connectivity with all posts is restored. All posts worldwide are now scheduling interviews with applicants, including with those who applied after the systems problems began on June 9.


The DOS has issued a statement that the Bureau of Consular Affairs continues to experience technical problems with their visa systems. This is a widespread issue, meaning that it does not depend on country or visa type.  The system is not expected to be online before next week. The problems stem from a hardware failure in a State Department facility in the United States on June 9. That failure is preventing the Department from processing and transmitting biometric data checks at visa-issuing embassies and consulates. The system failure was also effecting U.S. Citizens in need of passports abroad.

Those individuals who have applied for a visa or who were interviewed on or after June 9th should expect processing delays. Some visa applicants will be contacted directly to reschedule appointments. DOS stated that most posts were able to handle visa interviews and some visa printing as usual through the end of last week, but this week, many posts have had to reschedule visa appointments. Many applicants do not have immediate travel plans and will receive visas in time for planned trips.

U.S. Citizens can always request an emergency passport when abroad and there are no problems with issuing emergency passports.

DOS has stated that they are already prioritizing urgent humanitarian cases and temporary agricultural workers and once the systems are fully operational, they will work as quickly as possible to clear the backlog of pending visa cases.

I will continue to post updates as they come in.

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Posted June 19, 2015 by KrystalAlanis in category "Immigration News Updates