Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
How can I immigrate to the U.S.? Where should I send information about myself?
There are several ways to immigrate to the U.S.:
- Through family relations. In this case your parents or brothers/sisters who hold the U.S. citizenship may file an I-130 immigrant petition on your behalf.
- Through employment. In this case an immigrant petition is filed by your U.S. employer.
- Through investment. In this case you are expected to invest at least 500.000 USD in the U.S. economy.
- Through winning a Green Card (participation in the Diversity Visa Lottery (http://www.dvlottery.state.gov/).
What are the rules of shipping pets to the United States? What documents are required at the border?
The United States Embassy does not deal with issues of bringing pets outside of Ukraine and, therefore, can not advise on this. You can find some general information on the subject on our website.
The travel policies of various airlines regarding the shipping of pets differ. These are only general guidelines; it is crucial that you review all considerations with the airline you plan to use. We recommend that you request written confirmation of reservations you make for pet shipment.
There are three ways you can ship your pet via the airlines:
- Your pet can travel on the plane with you (either in-cabin or in the cargo). In either case, your pet will be considered excess baggage and charged accordingly. Some airlines no longer offer this option.
- You can book your pet on a separate flight. In this case, you will be charged the cargo rate, which is considerably more than excess baggage. Some airlines no longer offer this option.
- You can have your pet shipped through a licensed commercial shipper. You will be charged the cargo rate plus the shipper’s fee. Several airlines require this method unless your pet is small enough to fit in the cabin.
NOTE: As a rule, animals 100 lbs. or larger will be charged as cargo even if they travel on the same plane as you do. It is important to check with the airline if your pet is close to that weight.
Please contact the airlines you are planning to use for more information.
Can Crimean residents who received a Russian passport, get a US visa?
The U.S. Embassy in Kyiv handles immigration and non-immigrant visas to citizens of Ukraine, in particular those living in the Crimea. We also process visa applicants of different nationalities, including Russians, while they live within our consular district.
I have a visa interview scheduled (visa type - K1). Where can I find an accurate list of documents to be translated into English? Do I have to indicate somewhere that my American fiance will also be present during the interview?
Documents in English, Ukrainian or Russian are submitted without translation.
The originals of any documents provided that are not in English, Ukrainian or Russian languages must be accompanied by their English translations, carried out by a qualified interpreter who is licensed to make such translations.
The presence of the petitioner during the interview is not required. If your fiance will visit interview with you, he must have a passport. You do not have to fill out any forms.
I applied for an immigration visa. Via TMM-Express I received my passport with an open visa, and all supporting documents but my young nephew accidentally opened a package of medical records. Please advise me on what to do in this case?
If you accidentally opened the envelope, you need to send us your passport and any supporting documents by TMM-Express courier (at your own expense) or bring documents in person at the Embassy working hours for us to restore the envelope. If you will be sending the documents by TMM-Express courier, please include a letter of request to restore the accidentally opened envelope.
The Additional information passage reads: "The validity of your immigration visa is a period of time during which you have the right to enter the United States for the first time, it is determined as an Expiration Date". Does this mean that I have to enter the United States before that date, or can I enter after?
The validity of your visa is limited to the results of your medical examination. You have to enter the United States before the end of Expiration Date.
I got a Green Card 8 years ago. After that I lived for a while in the U.S., but was forced to return to Ukraine for family reasons and since then during 5 years I have been permanently living in Ukraine. Can I return to the United States for permanent residence, given that I still have a valid Green Card?
There is a special immigrant visa SB1 created for the cases when a legal permanent resident was outside the U.S. for longer than one year.
Please note: If your reasons for being outside the U.S. for longer than one year were NOT beyond your control, it is unlikely that the visa will be issued.
To schedule the appointment the applicant will need to register at http://www.ustraveldocs.com/ or call to the call center at the following numbers: 044-383-80-66 (if calling from Ukraine) and (703) 988-71-07(if calling from U.S.). The applicant will need to complete DS-117 form (PDF 24 KB) – Application to determine resident status. The cost of applying with this form, effective from April 13, 2012, is USD 180. After the form is completed and the supporting documents provided, the consular officer will conduct an interview to determine if he/she approves this application. If the decision is positive, the applicant will be given the instructions on what documents will be needed for an immigrant visa interview and how this interview could be scheduled. These instructions could be found on our web site.
A lawful permanent resident (LPR) who has remained outside the United States for more than one year may be eligible for returning resident status if the consular officer is satisfied that:
- The alien departed the United States with the intention of returning to an unrelinquished residence; and
- The alien’s stay abroad was for reasons beyond the alien’s control and for which the alien was not responsible.
Documentary evidence of an alien’s intent to maintain a U.S. residence may consist of, but is not limited to, the following:
- A driver’s license issued within the past year and reflecting the same address as that recorded on the Form I-94, Arrival-Departure Record;
- The name and address of the U.S. employer and evidence that a salary has been paid within a reasonable period of time;
- Evidence of children’s enrollment in a U.S. school;
- Evidence that extended visit abroad was caused by unforeseen circumstances;
- Evidence of having filed U.S. income tax return(s) for the past year(s); and
- Evidence of property ownership, whether real or personal, in the United States
I am applying for a K1/K2 visa. I have temporary permission from the child's father for a trip to the United States. Is it a valid enough document to be provided to the consulate?
We can not assess the validity of documents in advance. During the interview the consular officer will review your documents and tell you if they are enough. You must be prepared to verify the right to bring the child abroad and to provide relevant documents. Government of Ukraine has certain requirements for taking children abroad. Please refer to the government of Ukraine regarding requirements for documents for taking a child abroad in your particular situation.
I have a family member stranded in Lugansk that I would like to bring out of the country for a few months until the crisis is over. Are you processing passports for citizens in Lugansk? Will she be able to evacuate Lugansk until the crises is over?
The U.S. Embassy in Kyiv, Ukraine is the designated consular office for non-immigrant and immigrant visa applications submitted by, or on behalf of, residents of Ukraine. This includes those applicants residing in Eastern Ukraine. Please be informed that we process visas only in Kyiv.
I am an American citizen currently applying my fiancée for a visa. I was wondering how long we have to finish the visa application?
An approved K-1 visa petition is valid for a period of four months from the date of USCIS action, and your fiancée should apply for her visa within this time period. If, for reasons beyond her control, she is unable to make an application within this time period, you will need to send a revalidation letter via e-mail stating that you are still willing to marry your fiancée, that you are both legally free to marry and that you will marry her within 90 days of her arrival to the U.S.
My brother’s interview for US immigrant visa is scheduled at Kyiv's US Consulate for XXXX (date). I will be in Kyiv that day. So I kindly ask your permission to attend the interview as a petitioner.
You may attend the interview as a petitioner. Please have your passport with you on the interview day for the guards to let you in.
I am a Ukrainian citizen, about to marry a U.S. citizen, we are planning to register the marriage in Ukraine. Please advise, which visa type do I need to apply for to reunite with my husband in the U.S. (after the marriage is registered and my husband returns to the U.S.)? How long can this process take?
After the marriage is registered your husband will be able to submit the I-130 petition in the USA for you. More information about the process of filing I-130 can be found on our website.
Because each case is unique, we can not give you exact waiting period – an average process takes 6-8 months.
Could you please advise on whether it is possible to have a medical examination in some other Ukrainian city but Kyiv for immigrant visa?
No, the Embassy only accepts the medical reports prepared by the panel physicians in the clinic in Kyiv who have working contracts with the Embassy. If you have questions about the medical examination, please direct them to the clinic.
What do I do if I can not be present at my immigration visa interview?
If the applicant is unable to attend the originally scheduled visa interview he/she can reschedule either online at http://www.ustraveldocs.com/, or by contacting the Call Center at 044-383-80-66 (if calling from Ukraine), or (703)988-71-07 (if calling from the U.S.).
How do I pay the USCIS Immigrant Fee?
You must pay the fee prior to departing for the United States. USCIS will not issue your green card until USCIS receives payment. However, even if you have not paid the fee, U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers will admit you, as long as you are otherwise eligible to enter.
All applicants issued immigrant visas (including Diversity Visas), except children adopted under the Orphan (IR-3/IR-4) or Hague Processes (IH-3/IH-4), Iraqi and Afghan special immigrants who were employed by the U.S. Government, returning residents (SB-1s), and K visas, will pay the new fee.
You will pay the fee by going to www.USCIS.gov/ImmigrantFee, clicking on the link to the USCIS intake page on Pay.gov, answering the questions on the USCIS intake page, and providing your checking account, debit, or credit card information. Because checking payments must be drawn on a U.S. bank, someone else may pay the USCIS Immigrant Fee on your behalf.
More information is available here: https://travel.state.gov/content/visas/en/immigrate/nvc/immigrant-processing-faqs.html