As a Miami immigration lawyer, many of my clients who are applying for a U.S. visa or green card live overseas. As such,  they will have to attend an interview at a U.S. consulate. Here are some commonly asked questions about the consular interview:

How will I know where and when to show up for my visa interview?

You will receive a notice in the mail. The notice will tell you where and when to go for your visa interview. If you have any questions about the notice, you should contact a Miami immigration attorney to discuss.

I live far away from the U.S. consulate in my home country. What do I do?

My recommendation for clients who do not live near the U.S. embassy or consulate is to travel there at least a day or two in advance. If you are applying for an immigrant visa (green card), you may want to arrive a few days in advance, because  you will also need to complete your medical exam and to allow for time to get the test results back. Also, on the day of your interview, remember to arrive early, in case there are any unforeseen delays.

Again, if you have any questions about your consular interview, you should consult with your Miami immigration lawyer.

What can I expected when I enter the consulate?

When you arrive at the consulate for your interview, a couple of things will likely happen:

  • A clerk will check the packet of forms a to make everything required is there.
  • A consular officer will place you under oath, and review the contents of your application.
  • Your forms and documents will be reviewed by the officer. You will be asked questions that are identical to the ones on your forms. Note: If you can’t remember something, do not guess – say so.
  • You will be asked questions about whether you really qualify for the visa.
  • The interview itself can be relatively short. If everything is in order, you will probably be asked to return on another day to pick up your visa.

If you have any questions about the actual consular interview, it would be wise to speak with a Miami immigration lawyer.

What happens if the officer denies my visa application?

Not that officers rarely deny visa applications on the spot. For example, if your packet is missing some information, they will normally ask you to provide additional materials. If you do receive an outright denial, you may wish to consult a Miami immigration attorney for more information.

What do I do after I receive my visa?

What you should not do is open the envelope! You will need to give your visa envelope to the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officer when you arrive in the United States. The CBP officer will examine the contents of the envelope, and will then place a stamp in your passport indicating that your status. Again, if you have any questions, you should absolutely consult with a Miami immigration lawyer.

If you would like more information on consular processing, please contact Miami immigration lawyer Michael G. Murray, Esq. at (305) 895-2500 or visit our website at

Coronavirus update: We are safely open for business! USCIS is still accepting new filings for all applications. Our office is offering virtual consultations for new clients so that you don't have to come to our office in person. Call us to schedule your virtual meeting today.
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