6. Can Someone Apply for Adjustment of Status and Consular Processing of Immigrant Visa Simultaneously?
No, Consular Processing and Adjustment of Status cannot be pursued at the same time.
7. Where Does the Foreign National Applying for Consular Processing Need to Go for a Medical Exam – in U.S. or in His or Her Home Country?
The medical exam must be conducted in the consular district where the foreign national is applying for their immigrant visa. The Consulate will provide the list of medical doctors with their telephone numbers and addresses to schedule the medical examinations in the home country. The foreign national must use one of the listed panel physicians for the medical exam. At some consulates, there is a doctor on-site and the consulate will schedule the medical appointment for you. Instructions for the medical exam will be in “Packet 4” (the last package the consulate sends out, with interview appointment letter on top.)
8. Immunization - Can it be Done in the U.S. and Submitted as Proof of Having Completed the Immunization?
Immunizations can be completed within the U.S. (or any other country, for that matter) and proof of having completed the immunizations will generally be accepted by medical doctors in other countries.
9. Once the Consulate Approves the Immigrant Visa, Does the Foreign National Have to Travel to the U.S. Immediately or Does He or She Have to Wait for the "Green Card" to be Received in Hand?
The immigrant visa or “I-551” stamp, which looks very similar to any other type of visa stamped at the Consulate, is generally valid for 6 months from the time it is issued. The principal applicant and each family member that has received the visa must enter the U.S. during that 6 month period. The permanent resident card or “green card” is not issued until the intending immigrant has entered the U.S. and has cleared Immigration and Customs. At the time of entry, the foreign national will submit paperwork given to him or her from the Consulate to the Immigration Officer at the port of entry. The immigration officer will stamp and make a notation in each passport that the person is entering as an immigrant of the United States. The stamp in the passport is valid proof of being a permanent resident and may be used just like a “green card” until the actual card is received. The documents in the immigrant visa packet will be forwarded to USCIS so that the green card can be issued.
10. Can a Foreign National Apply for Work Permit if He or She Has Applied for Consular Processing of Immigrant Visa?
No, a foreign national cannot enter the U.S. until he or she has obtained an immigrant visa. Thus, he or she would also not get a work permit as they are outside the U.S.