The United States Department of State (“DOS”) has announced the creation of a six-month pilot program under which certain B-1/B-2 visa applicants may be required to post a bond as a condition of visa issuance. The program, which was published in the Federal Register on November 24, 2020 will become effective on December 24, 2020.
Formally known as the Visa Bond Pilot Program, the DOS program may require B-1/ B-2 visa applicants who are citizens of countries that have a high overstay rate as reported by the Department of Homeland Security (“DHS”).
Under the pilot program, bonds will be posted with DHS’s Immigration and Customs Enforcement Agency (“ICE”) and ICE will retain all bonds posted in the event the applicant overstays.
During the program’s initial six month test, interviewing consular officers may require B-1/B-2 visa applicants who fall within the scope of the program to post a bond in the amount of $5,000, $10,000 or $15,000 depending on the visa applicant’s individual circumstances. We emphasis that this is an option and might not be required by every applicant.
For more information on the Visa Bond Pilot Program and how it may affect B-1/ B-2 visa applicants in Asia, contact us today at firstname.lastname@example.org and speak with a U.S. immigration lawyer in Ho Chi Minh City, Manila or Taipei.