Updated on 11.01.2022
Our company is currently applying for an L-1 visa for an employee (German nationality) and has already booked a fixed appointment at the US Consulate in Frankfurt/Main in this context. Unfortunately, this appointment will not take place for another 4 weeks. Do you advise to keep the appointment or to go the easier way now and apply for the documents by mail? And how would that be possible now?
In fact, the U.S. Department of State has responded to the critical appointment availability situation at U.S. consulates worldwide by expanding the postal submission process for certain visa categories.
From now until and including the end of the year, certain applicants may apply for the US visa without the otherwise mandatory in-person interview appointment. Also L-1 Visas are affected.
First, please note that not all individuals applying for an L-1 visa automatically qualify for the submission process. In the case of your employee, it would only work under the following conditions:
Main issue: You can only access the submission procedure by canceling the existing interview appointment in the online profile and then answering the interview appointment questions again in the profile. Based on the answers to the questions (e.g., about previous visas, etc.), the system will show you accordingly whether an interview appointment is mandatory or whether the postal procedure can be used as an alternative. If the latter is possible, you will receive all the information on how to submit the application via the profile. It is not possible to simply send the application by mail to the Consulate General in Frankfurt/Main. You must follow this procedure to ensure processing.
If you cancel the interview appointment and for (any) reason the postal procedure is not possible, you could only make a new appointment for the employee. Then of course with probably longer waiting times for an appointment. I.e., it should be carefully checked in advance whether the postal procedure is really possible.
In addition, you should also allow around 2-3 weeks processing time for the submission procedure until the visa is issued or until the passport is returned.
In your case, sending the appointment by mail may actually save you time. However, if the cancellation of the appointment seems too risky, you can alternatively check regularly in the online profile whether an earlier appointment may become available (e.g. due to the cancellation of other applicants).
By clicking "Accept All Cookies" you consent to our use and sharing of your information with our partners.