Ask the Consul – What to do after you have your IV Appointment Letter?

Congratulations on reaching this stage in the process where you are invited to prepare your Immigrant Visa (IV) application package and come to the U.S. Embassy for your visa interview. This column will provide answers to many questions you may now have. It is important that you understand the requirements for each part of the ...
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Ask the Consul – Applying for a Non-Immigrant U.S. Visa: What to expect at the VAC visit

In the previous Ask the Consul articles we discussed how to find visa information at do.usembassy.gov , how to complete a non-immigrant visa application (DS-160) at https://ceac.state.gov/genniv/ , and how to use www.ustraveldocs.com to create a profile, make a payment and schedule your appointment. By following the prompts online, you’ll be informed whether you need to make an ...
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Ask the Consul – Visa Approval, Denial, and Administrative Processing

In the previous Ask the Consul articles we discussed how to apply for a nonimmigrant visa and prepare for your visit to the Embassy.  Once you have followed all these steps and completed your interview, the consular officer will tell you if your visa application is approved, denied, or pending for additional administrative processing. The ...
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Ask the Consul – Be Ready: Visit the Visa Application Center before your Interview

Many residents of Santo Domingo know where the United States Embassy is, and where to apply for a visa.  But have you heard of the Visa Application Center (the “VAC”)?  All applicants for Immigrant Visas must first visit the VAC prior to their interviews at the embassy.  The VAC is located in Galleria 360 mall ...
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Ask the Consul – Applying for a Nonimmigrant U.S. Visa: What to do during the Interview

In the previous Ask the Consul articles we discussed how to complete a nonimmigrant visa application, schedule your appointment, and prepare for your visits to the Visa Application Center (VAC) and the Embassy. Now we will discuss what to expect the day of your interview. On the day of your interview, you should arrive at ...
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Ask the Consul – Applying for a Non-Immigrant U.S. Visa: Preparing for the Interview

In the previous Ask the Consul articles we discussed how to find visa information at do.usembassy.gov , how to complete a nonimmigrant visa application (DS-160) at https://ceac.state.gov/genniv/ , how to use www.ustraveldocs.com /do to create a profile and schedule your appointment, and how to prepare for your visit to the Visa Application Center (VAC). The next step will ...
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Ask the Consul – Applying for a Nonimmigrant U.S. Visa: Visa Approval, Denial, and Administrative Processing

In the previous Ask the Consul articles we discussed how to apply for a nonimmigrant visa and prepare for your visit to the Embassy.  Once you have followed all these steps and completed your interview, the consular officer will tell you if your visa application is approved, denied, or pending for additional administrative processing. The ...
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Ask the Consul – Be Ready: Visit the Visa Application Center before your Interview

Many residents of Santo Domingo know where the United States Embassy is, and where to apply for a visa.  But have you heard of the Visa Application Center (the “VAC”)?  All applicants for Immigrant Visas must first visit the VAC prior to their interviews at the embassy.  The VAC is located in Galleria 360 mall ...
Read More»

Ask the Consul – Family Based Immigration

The U.S. Embassy Consular Section receives many questions related to visas. One of the most common questions received is: How can I become a legal permanent resident of the United States?  An immigrant visa, or green card as it is known, allows you to reside permanently in the United States. To obtain an immigrant visa ...
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Why do I have to visit the VAC at Galerias 360 before my interview?

Most visa applicants visit the Visa Application Center (Centro de Atención de Visas) or “VAC” in Galerías 360 before their Embassy appointment, or before leaving their visa for renewal to complete the fingerprint collection portion of the visa application process.  Applicants make an appointment at the VAC from their profile on www.ustraveldocs.com/do, after completing the ...
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Ask the Consul – Applying for a Nonimmigrant U.S. Visa: What to do during the Interview

In the previous Ask the Consul articles we discussed how to complete a nonimmigrant visa application, schedule your appointment, and prepare for your visits to the Visa Application Center (VAC) and the Embassy. Now we will discuss what to expect the day of your interview. On the day of your interview, you should arrive at ...
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Ask the Consul – Protect yourself

The United States Embassy in Santo Domingo wants visa applicants to protect themselves from becoming victims of visa fraud. Our “Ten cuida’o con ese Maco” campaign helps applicants to identify the macos – dishonest lawyers, travel agents, and fixers – and to understand the consequences of immigration fraud. Each year, millions of people obtain a ...
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Ask the Consul – What to do after you have your IV Appointment Letter?

Congratulations on reaching this stage in the process where you are invited to prepare your Immigrant Visa (IV) application package and come to the U.S. Embassy for your visa interview. This column will provide answers to many questions you may now have. It is important that you understand the requirements for each part of the ...
Read More»

Ask the Consul – Applying for a Non-Immigrant U.S. Visa: What to expect at the VAC visit

In the previous Ask the Consul articles we discussed how to find visa information at do.usembassy.gov , how to complete a non-immigrant visa application (DS-160) at https://ceac.state.gov/genniv/ , and how to use www.ustraveldocs.com to create a profile, make a payment and schedule your appointment. By following the prompts online, you’ll be informed whether you need to make an ...
Read More»

Ask the Consul – Applying for a Non-Immigrant U.S. Visa: Preparing for the Interview

In the previous Ask the Consul articles we discussed how to find visa information at  do.usembassy.gov , how to complete a nonimmigrant visa application (DS-160) at  https://ceac.state.gov/genniv/ , how to use  www.ustraveldocs.com/do  to create a profile and schedule your appointment, and how to prepare for your visit to the Visa Application Center (VAC). The next step will be ...
Read More»

Ask the Consul – Applying for a Nonimmigrant U.S. Visa: Visa Approval, Denial, and Administrative Processing

In the previous Ask the Consul articles we discussed how to apply for a nonimmigrant visa and prepare for your visit to the Embassy.  Once you have followed all these steps and completed your interview, the consular officer will tell you if your visa application is approved, denied, or pending for additional administrative processing. The ...
Read More»

Ask the Consul – Be Ready: Visit the Visa Application Center before your Interview

Many residents of Santo Domingo know where the United States Embassy is, and where to apply for a visa.  But have you heard of the Visa Application Center (the “VAC”)?  All applicants for Immigrant Visas must first visit the VAC prior to their interviews at the embassy.  The VAC is located in Galleria 360 mall ...
Read More»

Ask the Consul – Family Based Immigration

The U.S. Embassy Consular Section receives many questions related to visas. One of the most common questions received is: How can I become a legal permanent resident of the United States?  An immigrant visa, or green card as it is known, allows you to reside permanently in the United States. To obtain an immigrant visa ...
Read More»

Ask the Consul – Why do I have to visit the VAC at Galeria 360 before my interview?

Most visa applicants visit the Visa Application Center (Centro de Atención de Visas) or “VAC” in Galerías 360 before their Embassy appointment, or before leaving their visa for renewal to complete the fingerprint collection portion of the visa application process.  Applicants make an appointment at the VAC from their profile on www.ustraveldocs.com/do, after completing the ...
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U.S. Embassy Santo Domingo Changes Visa Process for Families with Children under 14

he U.S. Embassy Santo Domingo has discontinued the “Interview Waiver Program,” known as the “drop box,” and will require parents who wish to travel to the United States for vacation with their children (under the age of 14) to appear for an interview in representation of their children.
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Ask the Consul – Applying for a Non-Immigrant U.S. Visa: Preparing for the Interview

In the previous Ask the Consul articles we discussed how to find visa information at  do.usembassy.gov , how to complete a nonimmigrant visa application (DS-160) at  https://ceac.state.gov/genniv/ , how to use  www.ustraveldocs.com/do  to create a profile and schedule your appointment, and how to prepare for your visit to the Visa Application Center (VAC). The next step will be ...
Read More»

Ask the Consul – Nonimmigrant Visa: Visa Approval, Denial, and Administrative Processing

In the previous Ask the Consul articles we discussed how to apply for a nonimmigrant visa and prepare for your visit to the Embassy.  Once you have followed all these steps and completed your interview, the consular officer will tell you if your visa application is approved, denied, or pending for additional administrative processing. The three sections below explain in more detail what each decision means for ...
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Ask the Consul – Be Ready: Visit the Visa Application Center before your Interview

Many residents of Santo Domingo know where the United States Embassy is, and where to apply for a visa.  But have you heard of the Visa Application Center (the “VAC”)?  All applicants for Immigrant Visas must first visit the VAC prior to their interviews at the embassy.  The VAC is located in Galleria 360 mall ...
Read More»

Ask the Consul – Why do I have to visit the VAC at Galeria 360 before my interview?

Most visa applicants visit the Visa Application Center (Centro de Atención de Visas) or “VAC” in Galería 360 before their Embassy appointment, or before leaving their visa for renewal to complete the fingerprint collection portion of the visa application process.  Applicants make an appointment at the VAC from their profile on www.ustraveldocs.com/do , after completing the ...
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Ask the Consul – My Immigrant Visa was Approved… Now What?

If your immigrant visa has been approved, first of all, a heartfelt congratulations!  You and your family have navigated a long and complicated path, and you as an applicant are finally in the last steps of moving to the United States.  The question remains, however, now what do you need to do? First – Check ...
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Ask the Consul – Family Based Immigration

The U.S. Embassy Consular Section receives many questions related to visas. One of the most common questions received is: How can I become a legal permanent resident of the United States?  An immigrant visa, or green card as it is known, allows you to reside permanently in the United States. To obtain an immigrant visa ...
Read More»

Be Ready: Visit the Visa Application Center before your Interview

Many residents of Santo Domingo know where the United States Embassy is, and where to apply for a visa.  But have you heard of the Visa Application Center (the “VAC”)?  All applicants for Immigrant Visas must first visit the VAC prior to their interviews at the embassy.  The VAC is located in Galleria 360 mall ...
Read More»

Ask the Consul – United States Citizen Immigration and Services Office

The US Citizenship and Immigration Services Office, USCIS, is a government entity of the United States of America that provides services related to the immigration and naturalization processes of the families of residents and citizens of the United States. USCIS also manages the first steps for the adoptions of children of other countries. Family-based immigration ...
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Ask the Consul – Applying for a Nonimmigrant U.S. Visa: Visa Approval, Denial, and Administrative Processing

In the previous Ask the Consul articles we discussed how to apply for a nonimmigrant visa and prepare for your visit to the Embassy.  Once you have followed all these steps and completed your interview, the consular officer will tell you if your visa application is approved, denied, or pending for additional administrative processing. The ...
Read More»

Ask the Consul – Applying for a Nonimmigrant U.S. Visa: What to do during the Interview

In the previous Ask the Consul articles we discussed how to complete a nonimmigrant visa application, schedule your appointment, and prepare for your visits to the Visa Application Center (VAC) and the Embassy. Now we will discuss what to expect the day of your interview. On the day of your interview, you should arrive at ...
Read More»

Ask the Consul: Applying for a Non-Immigrant U.S. Visa: Preparing for the Interview

In the previous Ask the Consul articles we discussed how to find visa information at do.usembassy.gov , how to complete a nonimmigrant visa application (DS-160) at https://ceac.state.gov/genniv/ , how to use www.ustraveldocs.com /do to create a profile and schedule your appointment, and how to prepare for your visit to the Visa Application Center (VAC). The next step will ...
Read More»

Ask the Consul: Applying for a Non-Immigrant U.S. Visa: What to expect at the VAC visit

In the previous Ask the Consul articles we discussed how to find visa information at do.usembassy.gov , how to complete a non-immigrant visa application (DS-160) at https://ceac.state.gov/genniv/ , and how to use www.ustraveldocs.com to create a profile, make a payment and schedule your appointment. By following the prompts online, you’ll be informed whether you need to make an ...
Read More»

Ask the Consul: Applying for a Non-Immigrant U.S. Visa: Payment and Appointments

In the last Ask the Consul article we discussed how to find visa information at https://do.usembassy.gov/ , how to complete a nonimmigrant visa application (DS-160) at https://ceac.state.gov/genniv/ , and how to create a profile at www.ustraveldocs.com /do. After completing those steps, you are ready to pay the application fee and schedule your appointments. Logon to www.ustraveldocs.com and open ...
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Why do I have to visit the VAC at Galeria 360 before my interview?

February 13, 2017 Most visa applicants visit the Visa Application Center (Centro de Atención de Visas) or “VAC” in Galerías 360 before their Embassy appointment, or before leaving their visa for renewal to complete the fingerprint collection portion of the visa application process.  Applicants make an appointment at the VAC from their profile on www.ustraveldocs.com/do, ...
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Introduction to the Consular Section

February 6, 2017 The United States and the Dominican Republic share strong economic, social, and cultural ties.  Our objective as a Consular Section is to facilitate legitimate travel between our countries. The Consular Section is located at Ave. Republica de Colombia #56, Arroyo Hondo, in Santo Domingo.  When visiting us, please remember that you only ...
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Travel Document Request for United States Legal Permanent Residents

January 30, 2017 The United States Citizenship and Immigration Service has released form I-131A, which allows Lawful Permanent Residents (LPR) outside the United States to request a travel document (Transportation Document) to return to US territory. This document may be issued if you are returning from a temporary overseas trip of less than one year, ...
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Adoption Process in the Dominican Republic

January 23, 2017 In the Dominican Republic, CONANI is the central agency handling adoptions that provides the following services available under the Hague Convention: identifying a child for adoption and arranging the process, securing the necessary consent to termination of parental rights, performing background studies, monitoring cases after placement, and facilitating provisional child care if ...
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Emergency Travel

January 2, 2017 Although most applicants apply for visas to enjoy time with family or see tourist attractions, we understand that sometimes applicants need to travel to attend to family or business emergencies.  There are a limited number of immediate emergency visa appointments available for applicants who prove that they have an urgent reason to ...
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The Immigrant Visa Application Process

December 12, 2016 If you are applying for an immigrant visa, please schedule and attend your appointment at the Visa Applicant Center in Galeria 360 before your immigrant visa interview at the Embassy.  We cannot conduct an interview if you have not completed the necessary processes at Galeria 360. While processing times vary by applicant, ...
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Student and Cultural Exchange Visas

December 5, 2016 There are different types of visas for applicants who want to study in the U.S.: visas F-1 and M-1 for students, and J-1 visas for exchange visitors. Student visas (F-1 or M-1) F-1 visas are for applicants whose primary purpose is to travel to the United States to study in an academic program, while ...
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Do I need an invitation from an U.S. citizen or someone in the U.S. in order to qualify for a tourist visa?

November 7, 2016 We understand the wish of U.S. citizens and residents to have family members visit the United States, and to send letters of invitation.  An invitation is not required and cannot guarantee visa issuance. In fact, there are no required documents for tourist/business visa applications.  Visa applicants must qualify for the visa according ...
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How to respond during an interview

October 24, 2016 Applicants should always come prepared for their visa interviews. Although each interview is different, there are certain topics the officer will always touch upon. For example, the consul will generally always ask the applicant questions about their job, their living situation, and their purpose of travel. The objective of the interview is to create a complete ...
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The Medical Examination and Fee for Immigrant Visa Applicants

October 10, 2016 All immigrant visa applicants, regardless of age, require a medical examination prior to the issuance of a visa.  Only a physician accredited by the U.S. Embassy can perform this exam.  It is your responsibility to schedule a medical exam with one of the doctors listed below before your visa interview appointment at ...
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Nonimmigrant Visa Application Payment via Internet

September 22, 2016 Nonimmigrant Visa Application Payment via Internet The Consular Section of the U.S. Embassy enabled the acceptance of payments for visa appointments via internet in order to facilitate the non-immigrant visas application process. Now, visa applicants can pay the visa fee online by credit or debit card Visa or MasterCard. Banco Popular customers ...
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Always Write Your Full Name on Forms

Monday, September 12, 2016 Always write your full name on the forms When filling out the forms for a visa application, most applicants solely write their first name and one surname. This delays the visa process, wasting time, effort, and even money, because of the steps needed to correct the errors. It is very important ...
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Report Human Trafficking

September 5, 2016 There are about 20 million victims of human trafficking worldwide, including men, women, children and the elderly. Many victims come from different social strata and are forced into sexual exploitation, domestic service in slavery, and even forced labor. Trafficking victims are everywhere; for this reason, the U.S. Embassy in the Dominican Republic ...
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Soliciting a U.S. Tourism Visa for a Domestic Employee

August 1, 2016 Many Dominicans require their domestic employees to travel with them while they are in the United States. Domestic employees may travel on a B1 nonimmigrant visa reserved for business travel only. However, additional steps are required before being issued a domestic employee nonimmigrant visa. Domestic employees—who include workers such as nannies, nurses, ...
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I was denied a non-immigrant visa because I was told I lacked “strong ties” to my home country. What does that mean?

July 25, 2016 According to U.S. immigration law, consular officers are obligated to assume that all non-immigrant visa applicants intend to immigrate to the United States. It is the responsibility of each applicant to prove to the satisfaction of the consular officer that he/she will return to the Dominican Republic upon the completion of the ...
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When to arrive for my interview

July 18, 2016 When to arrive for my interview Each applicant is assigned an appointment time, and the Embassy strictly adheres to this schedule. Therefore, applicants should arrive only within 15 minutes of their scheduled time. There is no need to arrive at the Embassy before the sun rises or hours before your appointment time ...
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Voting Information Events in Santiago and Santo Domingo

July 4th, 2016 Celebrate democracy this 4th of July by taking the necessary steps to vote in the 2016 U.S. elections! In order to vote in the November 2016 elections, all overseas U.S. citizens need to have completed a Federal Post Card Application (FPCA) in 2016.  Whether you are a first-time voter or have already received ballots and voted absentee ...
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Prepare for Hurricane Season

June 20, 2016 Ask the Consul Monday-July 20-2016 Prepare for Hurricane Season The Dominican Republic hurricane season runs from the beginning of June through the end of November.  In the case of a hurricane, it could take 24-48 hours for departure.  Minor storms can develop into hurricanes quickly. U.S. citizens should monitor local radio, the ...
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I have to go to the United States for medical treatment. What should I do?

June 6, 2016 Each year, thousands of Dominicans travel to the United States for medical treatment, usually with a visitor visa, a B2. Although a consular officer recognizes the humanitarian aspect of these cases, there are details that must be considered before issuing a visa for that purpose. For example, “What it is the medical ...
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What are the ramifications of being an undocumented immigrant in the United States?

May 30th, 2016 Many people have lived or are currently living illegally in the United States without realizing the serious problems they may face, such as imprisonment, deportation or denial of admission to the U.S. The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is the government agency that allows legal entry into the United States. People who ...
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Considerations for Cuban citizens applying for a U.S. visa in the Dominican Republic

May 23, 2016 Cubans in the Dominican Republic are welcome to apply for visas in Santo Domingo. Unlike Dominican passport holders, two different kinds of tourist visa are available for Cuban applicants: the B1/B2 visa, a single-entry visa valid for six months, and the B2 visa, a multiple-entry valid for five years. Cuban applicants should ...
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I am a U.S. citizen or resident alien living in the Dominican Republic. Am I required to pay U.S. income tax?

March 14th, 2016.- If you are a U.S. citizen or resident alien, the rules for filing income, estate, and gift tax returns and paying estimated tax are generally the same whether you are in the United States or abroad.  Your worldwide income is subject to U.S. income tax, regardless of where you reside. The upcoming ...
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How to apply for a visa if you have ever been arrested or detained by the police?

May 2, 2016 People who have been arrested in the Dominican Republic can apply for visas. There are specific charges, and corresponding penalties, that may create ineligibility. It is important that a visa applicant with an arrest record be forthcoming and honest about what happened, providing as much detail as possible during the interview.  Be ...
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“Summer Work & Travel Program”

April 25, 2016 Every year, the Consular Section at U.S. Embassy Santo Domingo processes thousands of exchange visitor visa applications for Dominican university students to participate in the Summer Work/Travel program.  Summer Work/Travel gives university students the opportunity to learn more about the United States and share their own culture and ideas through temporary work ...
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New system to apply for jobs in the US Embassy

April 11, 2016 Starting today, April 4, 2016, the Embassy of the United States of America has recruitment system for those interested in working at the U.S. Embassy. Applicants may apply through the website www.jobsusembassysd.us .   Applicants can now apply directly through the website without having to print, scan, and send your resume by email.   ...
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Declaring your child in the DR: documents you need to provide to prove physical presence in the United States

February 15th, 2016.- In order to transmit United States (U.S.) citizenship to a child born abroad, the U.S. citizen parent must meet the requirements of physical presence in the U.S. The requirements vary depending on the gender and marital status of the parent. Many parents are confused about what evidence is sufficient to prove physical ...
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Maintaining Residency in the US

February 1st, 2016.- Permanent residents are free to travel outside the United States, and temporary or brief travel usually does not affect your permanent resident status. A general guide used is whether you have been absent from the United States for more than a year. If you plan on being absent from the United States ...
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I was denied a non-immigrant visa because I was told I lacked “strong ties” to my home country. What does that mean?

January 4th, 2016.- According to U.S. immigration law, consular officers are obligated to assume that all non-immigrant visa applicants intend to immigrate to the United States. It is the responsibility of each applicant to prove to the satisfaction of the consular officer that he/she will return to the Dominican Republic upon the completion of the ...
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Lost or stolen visas

If your valid U.S. visa has been lost or stolen, immediately notify the U.S. Embassy Santo Domingo Consular Section.  In order to submit your report, please email support-dominicanrepublic@ustraveldocs.com including following documents: Report from the National Police indicating that your passport was lost or stolen; and Letter of Explanation including the date, circumstances, and location of the ...
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