Special Immigrant Visa
Special Immigrant Visas for Afghans – Who Worked for/on Behalf of the U.S. Government
Section 602(b) of the Afghan Allies Protection Act of 2009, as amended, authorized the issuance of Special Immigrant Visas (SIVs) to Afghan nationals who were employed by or on behalf of the U.S. government in Afghanistan and who meet certain requirements. The SIV process is available to Afghan employees and contractors who were employed by or on behalf of the U.S. government in Afghanistan, for a period of one year or more, between October 7, 2001 and December 31, 2014, and who have experienced or are experiencing an ongoing serious threat as a consequence of that employment.
The Department of State’s authority to issue SIVs to Afghan nationals under this program is limited to 3,000 visas for Afghan principal applicants in Fiscal Year 2014. We expect that these visas will all be issued by July 2014. We welcome action by Congress to extend this program. We are making arrangements to quickly resume issuances of SIVs to Afghan principal applicants if more visas are allocated.
For more information, please see:
- Afghan SIV Fact Sheet
- FAQs for Afghan SIV Applicants
- Los Angeles Times editorial by Secretary of State John Kerry
The deadline for applying for Chief of Mission approval, the first step in the SIV application process, is September 30, 2014.
Instructions for applying for the Afghan SIV program are available on usvisas.state.gov. Please do not contact the Front Office, Consular Section or other Embassy offices directly. Applications for Chief of Mission approval must be sent to the National Visa Center as described in the instructions.
Notice: You should NOT make any travel arrangements, sell property, or give up employment until and unless you are issued a visa.
This program is completely distinct from another program authorizing SIVs for certain Iraqi and Afghan translators/interpreters who worked directly with the United States Armed Forces or under COM authority, although some translators and interpreters may qualify under both programs. For information on that program, see Special Immigrant Visas for Iraqi and Afghan Translators/Interpreters.
The Consular Section of the U.S. Embassy would like to remind all Special Immigrant Visa (SIV) applicants that the only official source of information and policy regarding the SIV program is the U.S. Embassy itself. We do not comment or post information on social media sites that are not clearly identifiable as belonging to the U.S. Embassy in Afghanistan.
As a reminder, the U.S. Embassy does not charge for applying to the SIV program and encourages anyone who is charged to file an application to contact the Fraud Prevention Unit at KabulFPU@state.gov.