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Frequently Asked Question on Drop Box Eligibility Under New Criteria

  • January 9, 2022
150 150 Murthy Immigration Services

We had recently reported that eligibility criteria for drop box was expanded. Following this, based on inquiries received, we have complied a list of frequently asked question for the benefit of our readers. 

(1) I have a B1 or F1 visa. I now need to apply for a H or L renewal. Will I qualify?

Under the new criteria, you would qualify for the drop box even if your previous visa was not of the same category. 

(2) I have a U.S. nonimmigrant visa that is either valid or expired in the last 48 months. My dependents need to apply for a visa with me. Will they be eligible for the drop box based on my visa?

NO. Each applicant has to meet the requirements. This means that if all of them are linked to the same profile and will be applying together, each dependent will have to meet the criteria to avail this option. 

(3) When I scheduled my visa interview, I was not eligible for drop box. However, I am eligible for the drop box under the new criteria. I am unable to reschedule my appointment. What do I do?

You have the option to attend the interview as is or you can cancel the existing appointment and schedule a new drop box appointment under the new criteria. 

(4) Does my previous visa have to be issued in the country of application for me to be eligible for drop box?

NO. The previous visa need not be issued in the same country. However, it is important to remember that you need to apply from your home country. 

(5) Despite being eligible for drop box under new criteria, no appointments are available. What do I do?

The U.S. embassy is releasing appointments from time to time. So, one needs to keep checking at regular intervals.

(6) Will I be called for a personal interview after I submit using the interview waiver? If yes, do I need to schedule an appointment through the system to attend the consular interview?

At their discretion, the visa office may advise you to appear for a personal interview. Currently, one will have to schedule a follow up appointment to be able to attend the interview. 

(7) What are the documents that I am expected to submit for the interview waiver drop box?

This depends on the category of visa you are applying for. Please follow the instructions on the drop box appointment confirmation letter. 

(8) I received a INA 221(g) refusal. Will I be eligible for drop box?

No, INA 221(g) refusals are considered as a soft refusal. Unless a visa was subsequently issued, you will not be eligible for the drop box.

(9) My previous visa has an annotation “Clearance Received”. Am I eligible for the drop box?

No. If your previous visa has an annotation reading “Clearance Received”, you will not be eligible for the drop box. 

(10) My most recent visa was issued in India. On my most recent trip, I accrued an unlawful presence of over 180 days however, my visa expired within the last 48 months and there is no visa refusal yet. Do I qualify for the drop box?

No. If you have an apparent ineligibility, then you do not qualify for the drop box. 

We trust the above addresses many of your concerns. We will continue to bring the latest updates on this important subject.