Immigration. Travel. Living.

USA: reasons in visa deny

Map of the USA

The situation is complicated by the fact that there are no specific requirements that an applicant must do to prove his connection with his home country. As practice shows, the first thing that the Embassy pays attention to is not even a package of documents, but behavior and answers to questions during the interview.

TOP main reasons for refusal of your US visa

Upon receipt of a refusal of a visa to the United States, the applicant receives a standard form notification but is it the reason for the failed attempt to get to America will be indicated very vaguely – the lack of confirmed ties with the homeland and the applicant’s inadequacy to obtain permission to enter the States. However, the analysis of decisions on visa issues over several years made it possible to specify the reasons for the refusal.

1. Fragile ties with the home country

This reason for refusal is especially relevant for young citizens who do not have a job, family (wife/husband and children). The risk group is those living in rural areas, as well as students of the first and fifth years of university. Applicants from the listed categories are mobile and practically do not lose anything by staying permanently in America, including in the status of illegal immigrants.

2. Problems during the interview with the visa officer

Demeanor at an ambassador’s interview, honesty, self-confidence – all this is extremely important for a visa officer. The Consulate staff analyzes your reaction to questions, the slightest pauses and hesitation, facial expressions, and minor gestures. They quickly identify inconsistencies between verbal answers and information in the questionnaire, understand when the applicant begins to cheat, and conclude the reliability of the applicant. The slightest suspicion about your account leads to a refusal.

3. Long trips to the USA in the past

Often, an applicant is denied a visa to the United States if he previously had a short-stay visa, but the trip took longer than expected. In this case, the employee of the Consulate may have the following thoughts:

the applicant engages in illegal work during his visits to the United States;

the applicant’s status does not match the type of visa requested;

The applicant’s ties with his home country have significantly weakened, that is, nothing keeps him there.

4. Long travel times in the visa application

Visa officers are suspicious of extended travel. And this makes the applicant walk in a vicious circle. On the one hand, the indication of long deadlines in the application may become a reason for the refusal. On the other hand, if you hide the real-time of the planned trip, this can lead to rejections in the future.

5. Just a few travels in Europe

A good visa history is one of the success factors in your interview at the Embassy. Inveterate travelers rarely get rejected. Firstly, numerous travels indicate decent financial support of the applicant. Secondly, the fact of returning to his home country from Europe underlines the fact that the applicant has a really strong relationship with his homeland.

6. Immigrant relatives

The presence of relatives in the United States causes distrust of the applicant on the part of the visa officer for two reasons. First, if you have family, it will be much easier for you to adapt and stay in the States. Secondly, if your relatives stayed in the country illegally, this may automatically cause mistrust in you, or you may simply be punished for them.

7. Suspicious invitations

The Embassy does not require an invitation to obtain a visitor/tourist visa. However, the practice of including this paper in the package of documents is quite common. But, as a rule, invitations only instill additional suspicion, especially if they:

  • made up of common phrases, which indicates weak ties between the inviting party and the applicant;
  • written in bad English, with numerous mistakes;
  • written by the inviting party from the “black” list of the Consulate
  • Certified by a notary from the “black” list of the Consulate.
  • Due to the last point, it is recommended not to certify invitations at all.

8. Insufficient finance for the trip

Financial well-being is an important condition for the applicant, especially if the purpose of the trip is an operation or a course of treatment in an American clinic. At the same time, it is allowed to use sponsorship if personal savings are not enough.

It is worth knowing that a bank account opened before applying for a visa can also raise suspicions. The scheme, when an applicant borrows money, puts it into an account, makes a bank statement, and then withdraws the entire amount back, is quite common.

Refusal of a visa to the United States may also trigger a sponsorship guarantee from a person who is not a close relative of the applicant.

9. Change of status during a previous trip to the USA

This problem can even affect those who have changed their status with the approval of the Immigration Service. The consulate considers such situations as a deliberate silence about the real purposes of the visit, therefore, such applicants are most likely to be rejected.

10. Applicant’s suspicion of deception/fraud

The refusal also threatens in case of doubts of an employee of the American Consulate about the authenticity of mandatory or additional papers included in the package of documents – a certificate-extract from the Bank, a letter of recommendation from work, etc. The visa officer will not waste time checking documents. Therefore, it is better not to include implausible papers in the package of documents, especially if they are not mandatory.


11. Accusation of complicity

An employee of the visa department of the Consulate has the right to issue a refusal to a whole group of applicants in case of misconduct of at least one of its members. Common situations: adding an outside person to a group application for a sports team or troupe of artists, or specifying an outside person as an escort for the tour group.


12. Submitting documents outside your Consulate

Suspicions are caused by cases when an applicant applies for a visa at the Consulate, not in his native, but a neighboring country, focusing on the percentage of refusals.


13. Refusal as a guarantee of a return to the home country of other family members

This is a fairly rare practice, however, it also occurs. A refusal can be received by one of the family members to guarantee the return to their home country of all margin-min of other close relatives.


14. Suspicion of wanting to have a child in the United States

A trip to the United States to have a child there (the baby automatically receives American citizenship) attracts many wealthy parents. And although this is not prohibited by law, the employees of the Consulate almost always refuse pregnant women. These refusals are explained by the unwillingness to pay for childbirth and sick leave of a foreign national at the expense of American taxpayers.


15. Childbirth in the USA during a previous trip

If during the previous application to the Embassy the applicant was not in a position, but the baby was born in America before the expiration of the visa document, this is unlikely to lead to a refusal to issue a new visa. But if the pregnancy was already at the time of filing the documents and the applicant concealed her intentions, the refusal is almost 100% guaranteed.


16. Simultaneous submission of documents to immigrate to another country

An applicant is considered a potential immigrant if he/she applies for an American visa, starting the immigration process to another – predominantly Western – country. It is easier for a representative of the Consulate to refuse than to understand the true intentions of the applicant.


17. Getting to know a pen pal or romantic partner as a purpose of the trip

Refusal is threatened if you are applying for a tourist visa and at the same time plan to meet a person with whom you are in a romantic correspondence relationship. If you are applying for a visa for a bride or groom, in this case, you must comply with a lot of requirements and collect a more extensive package of documents. However, a failure is unlikely.


18. Study in the USA as the purpose of the trip

It is quite difficult to obtain a student visa, especially if the applicant is going to study on the terms of long-term programs (from 2 months or more).

In this case, the potential reasons for refusal may be as follows:

training is planned at a university with a bad reputation or at a local college;

low level of English proficiency for effective study;

inconsistency of the training profile with the current specialization;

the applicant is 30 years old or more, that is, he is older than the generally accepted student age;

the educational course chosen by the student has no applied value in the home country;

modest results during previous studies in the United States.


19. Too short time interval between attempts to obtain a visa

Often, visa officers repeat a visa refusal if the circumstances that caused the refusal have not changed since the previous visit for interviews. You should not immediately reapply after refusal, if during the interview you did not behave confidently, were confused in the answers, often hesitated, etc.


20. Bad mood at the visa officer

Based on the previous point, you might think that if you apply to the Consulate again after just a couple of days or even weeks after the previous unsuccessful attempt, you are guaranteed a refusal. But this is not the case. A small percentage of refusals is the result of the subjective attitude of the visa officer towards the applicant. Well, he didn’t like the applicant or the mood was bad, and the applicant simply fell under a hot hand.

And if you calmly answered the questions, behaved confidently, and do not see any objective reasons why you were denied a visa, you can safely reapply at least the next day.

IMPORTANT! The embassy has a rule: an applicant who was refused but came again for an interview the next day, will be interviewed by another visa officer. This helps to reduce the risk of denials due to bias in the Consulate.

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