EIG Dispatch – Special Alert

Glitch in Technical System Delays Issuance of U.S. Visas

The Department of State announced today that the Bureau of Consular Affairs is experiencing technical problems with their visa systems. A hardware failure on June 9 has halted the flow of biometric clearance requests to the Consular Consolidated Database (CCD). This is a critical step in the process to issue a U.S. visa because the system performs legally required national security checks before visas and other travel documents are printed. This issue is not particular to any country, or type of visa.

As a result, visa issuance has been delayed and it is creating a backlog for most U.S. consulates. Any applicant having submitted a DS-160 or having attended a visa interview on or after June 9, 2015 is expected to be affected by the delays. The Department is working diligently to respond to the problem, however there is no set date as to when the problem will be solved or when the delays may end.

Our recommendation to individuals who have not yet submitted a DS-160 or scheduled an appointment is to wait until the Department announces that the problem has been resolved and the system is up and running again, if travel plans permit. For individuals who have already submitted their DS-160 or have already scheduled their appointment at the consulate, we recommend that they reschedule the appointment for a later date, if travel plans permit. Travelers who have already attended their appointment should expect delays in the issuance of their visa and in their return to the U.S.

EIG will continue to monitor developments and provide updates as they become available.