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I-130 Petition Checklist

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  • Petitioner = U.S. Citizen
  • A Noncitizen Relative = Beneficiary/Visa Applicant


  • U.S. citizen petitioners must come in person to submit all forms and supporting documents in the order listed below. Beneficiary does not come in for this interview.
  • All Supporting Documents must be originals (bearing an original seal, stamp or signature of the office of record), plus one photocopy of each.
  • English translations of all foreign language documents are required. Any foreign language document must be accompanied by a full English translation that the translator has certified as complete and correct. The translator must certify that he/she is competent to translate the foreign language into English.
  • USCIS does not authorize the Department of State to accept a local filing abroad if the petitioner has already filed a Form I-130 domestically for the same beneficiary.  If exigent circumstances exist, the petitioner should request expedited processing for the electronic or domestically-filed petition.

Do not send anything to the Embassy or Consulate unless instructed to do.  Bring your documents to the interview. Before making an appointment, make sure you have all the necessary documents.

I-130:  This form is required in all cases (Download Form I-130).  You must file a separate Form I-130 for each beneficiary including child(ren). Note: Please do not fill out the I-130 online by creating a USCIS account via https://myaccount.uscis.gov/ You need to fill out the PDF version of the form instead.

I-130A:  This form is supplemental information for Spouse Beneficiary only. (Download Form I-130A)

Photographs:  Two photographs – one from petitioner and one from beneficiary, both taken within 30 days of filing I-130, are required. A 2 x 2 inch (5cm x 5cm) photo with a white to off-white background, the head (measured from the top of the hair to the bottom of the chin) should be centered in the frame facing straight ahead and there should be some space above the head. No eyeglasses in photos.

Evidence of Active Duty/diplomatic Status : Petitioner’s current military/government Order to Japan is required.

Proof of U.S. Citizenship:  An original birth certificate, original unexpired U.S. passport, original naturalization certificate, certificate of citizenship, or original consular report of birth abroad are the only acceptable documents.

Photo ID: Please submit a copy of a U.S. passport, a U.S. military ID card or other photo identification for petitioner.

Birth Certificate:  Please provide an original birth certificate for the beneficiary. For Japanese applicants born in Japan, a family registry serves as a birth certificate. Note: For any birth certificate registered more than six months after the date of birth, please provide a written statement explaining why the birth was registered late and two alternate forms of original, secondary evidence of identity. Secondary evidence of identity normally means original documents dating from the time of your birth and childhood, such as prenatal records, doctor’s notes and baby book, baptismal certificates issued on the date the baptism took place, school records/report cards registered or signed by the parents, or pieces of government-issued identification (Social Security card, driver’s license, etc.). For detailed information on Birth Certificate/Records and other civil documents from all countries, please see the State Department Reciprocity and Civil Documents by Country. 

Beneficiary’s Passport:  Please present beneficiary’s passport.  If the beneficiary is non-Japanese, please present all previous passports for the beneficiary.  Also, please provide a copy of passport pages including the picture ID page, U.S. visas, other foreign visas and SOFA stamp, if any.

Fee: The Filing Fee must be paid at the Embassy/Consulate cashier in yen or U.S. dollars on the day of your interview. You may pay by cash, or credit card (Visa, Mastercard, Discover, American Express, Diner’s Club, and JCB).


  1. Be prepared to pay with cash in case the credit card verification system is temporarily unavailable.
  2. Payment by credit card is billed in U.S. dollars.
  3. DO NOT pay the fee through the Non-Immigrant visa Web site. Application fees paid for the wrong visa category will not be accepted and cannot be refunded.
  4. This fee is non-refundable, regardless of any action taken on your petition.

If the petition is for a spouse or a child, you must include the following items.  Proof of marriage and legal termination of any prior marriages may be required to establish entitlements of other immigrants.  Please read “General Requirements” on the I-130 Instruction carefully.

Marriage Certificate:  Please provide an original marriage certificate from the jurisdiction where the marriage took place. If a beneficiary is a Japanese national, you may submit a certified copy of the family registry. For detailed information on Marriage Certificate/Records and other civil documents from all countries, please see the State Department Reciprocity and Civil Documents by Country. 

Divorce Decree or Death Certificate:  Original divorce decrees or death certificates, or certified court copies of the certificates, showing termination of all prior marriages of petitioner and/or beneficiary are acceptable. For detailed information on Divorce Decree or Death Certificate/Records and other civil documents from all countries, please see the State Department Reciprocity and Civil Documents by Country. 

Proof of Relationship:  If you have been married less than two years, please provide a statement of how you met and evidence of your on-going relationship.

Birth Certificate for Beneficiary’s Children:  Please provide an original birth certificate or consular report of birth abroad for beneficiary’s children. For detailed information on Birth Certificate/Records and other civil documents from all countries, please see the State Department Reciprocity and Civil Documents by Country. 

Affidavit of Support:  (Optional in Tokyo/ Not acceptable in Naha at I-130 filing) Form I-864 is a contractual affidavit of support. Most family-based visa applicants must submit an I-864 completed and signed by the petitioning relative (sponsor). Mistakes in completing the I-864 are the most common reason for refusing an immigrant visa application. Please read all instructions carefully before filling out the I-864.

Please note: Form I-864 needs to be submitted with one of the following documents:

  • tax transcript from IRS from the most recent tax year and W2 (W2 is  only required if the transcripts show “married filing jointly”)  or,
  • federal tax return 1040 from the most recent tax year and W2 regardless of whether tax return was jointly filed.

For Naha: You may submit the Affidavit of Support, Form I-864, on the final Immigrant Visa interview day.

Appointments can only be booked for up to two months in advance at this time.

Schedule an I-130 Appointment in Tokyo or Naha