On October 17, 2023 the U.S. Department of State sent a notice regarding the pilot program to resume renewal of H-1B nonimmigrant visa issuance in the United States. Once the document is published, it will lay out the eligibility criteria for noncitizens to participate in the stateside visa renewal pilot program.
The expectations of the program thus far are the following:
- We expect to see the program begin in early 2024
- Program will be limited to H-1B principal visa applicants only
- Limited to nationals of countries not subject to visa reciprocity fees
- India is on the list of countries to be able to participate
- There will be some sort of eligibility requirements, similar to those that allow a person to go through the interview waiver program
- Limited to 20,000 applicants
This will be a very limited option for most individuals applying for one of the 20,000 appointments, and there will be challenges that arise due to the newness of the program. The DOS has shown their commitment to the program and we expect that improvements and availability will be made to the program in the future.