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The U.S. Department of State (DOS) has announced that on July 20, 2014 the DOS visa system database began experiencing significant performance issues.  The resulting technical difficulties have resulted in visa system database outages since that time.  Although the DOS visa system database has been brought back online, DOS is currently working to restore the system to full capacity.  At this time, DOS does not have an anticipated date by which the visa database system will be restored to full capacity.  DOS anticipates that it will take weeks to resume full capacity.

 

These technical issues have significantly impacted visa processing at U.S. Consulates worldwide.  Visa applicants should expect delays in visa issuance and should plan accordingly.  In addition, DOS reports that some Embassies and Consulates may temporarily limit or reschedule nonimmigrant visa interview appointments until more system resources become available to process new applications.

 

In order to avoid unexpected delays, foreign workers in the United States planning to travel outside of the United States to renew their visas in the coming weeks may wish to review whether it may be possible to delay visa renewal until the visa issuance process stabilizes and DOS is able to issue visas at full capacity.