There was an announcement by the Department of Homeland Security in December of 2021. They, along with the Secretary of State, decided that because they need to get cases moving through, they are going to waive certain types of interviews in limited circumstances.
Those interviews don’t have to occur at the US embassy or consulate abroad and so, they’re able to get caught up on their cases. This is something that USCIS, United States Citizenship and Immigration Services has done. They too have waived interviews in certain case types.
USCIS is the agency that’s here in the United States that processes, reviews, and makes decisions on applications here in the United States. USCIS has been waiving certain types of interview. We’ve had clients who are lucky enough to have their in-person interview waived.
Now that the US consulates and embassies are going to do something similar and waive in-person interviews at US consulates and embassies, there are a lot of people that are excited and hoping that they won’t have to do a fiancé or spouse visa interview. They assume that they can get approval without having to go through the interview.
However, those types of interviews aren’t being waived. They are only waiving nonimmigrant visa interviews. Nonimmigrant visas are essentially visas that are for individuals who don’t have immigrant intent. That’s why they call it nonimmigrant which means that the individual is coming for a short amount of time to complete a certain task i.e work or study.
There has been no official announcement that they are going to be waiving fiancé or spouse visa interviews. That’s likely because those are immigrant visas. Those are visas for individuals who are actually coming to relocate to live in the United States long-term.
If they’re waiving these interviews, this is still good news for individuals who are going through the fiancé visa or spouse visa process because that means if the consular officer doesn’t have to look at these cases or do an interview for these cases that means that other cases that do have to be interviewed will be able to get to the front of the line faster.