Immigrant Visa Checklist

Before making an appointment, make sure you have all the necessary documents.

As the beneficiary of an approved immigrant visa petition, you may begin the process of applying for an immigrant visa. Once you have all required documents, please email us an appointment request. We will schedule an appointment and notify you by email of a specific date to visit our offices. All members of your family immigrating with you who are also applying for visas must appear with you on the appointment date. If you cannot keep the appointment, please notify our office immediately.

Important Notices

  • All immigrant visa applicants, regardless of age, are required to visit the Embassy or Consulate in person for a formal visa interview.
  • Do not send anything to the Embassy or Consulate. Bring all pertinent documents to the interview. Your application will be refused if you fail to bring all required documentation.
  • If the original documents listed below have already been submitted with your I-130, you do not need to resubmit them. However, if there are any corrections or amendments of the records made, please submit the documents with corrected/amended information.
  • 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. It is not necessary to have the translation notarized.
  • If you wish to retain an original document, you must bring a photocopy with the original. We will return the original to you after the interview by request.
  • It is strongly recommended that applicants keep a duplicate file copy of all documents submitted in connection with the application. The embassy does not provide copying services.

Print out this page and check the boxes pertaining to your case.

All applicants must present the following documents at the interview:
Passport:  Your passport must be valid at least 60 days beyond the validity date of the immigrant visa. It must allow residence in a foreign country. Each child 16 years or older who is included in his/her parents’ passport but whose photograph does not appear in the passport must obtain his/her own passport. An immigrant visa is issued in the same name as in the applicant’s passport. If your name legally changed, your passport must first be amended to include the new name.  However, if your name changed following a subsequent marriage, the passport does not need to be amended or renewed for an immigrant visa as long as an original marriage certificate is presented as a proof of name change, and you entered all previous names on DS-260 application.
Birth Certificate:  You will need one original or certified copy of the birth record or family register for each visa applicant. The certificate must contain the seal or signature of the official custodian of the record and also show that it is an extract of an official record. You must also submit birth certificates for all unmarried children under age 21, even if they are not applying for visas.
DS-260 Online Immigrant Visa Application:  The applicant must complete and submit this form online. Upon submission of the form, print out your confirmation page for your records.  If you filed an I-130 in Tokyo or Naha, do not mail any documents listed in the checklist to NVC even though the DS260 confirmation page instructs you to do so.  Bring the documents to your interview.
Marriage, Divorce, Death or Adoption Certificates:  If applicable, applicants must present a family register or these documents, certified by the office of record , along with English translations. All visa applications on behalf of adopted orphan children must include a certified, irrevocable statement of release for adoption and emigration, written in the native language of and signed by the natural parents as well as any other intervening authority which had legal custody of the child.

Affidavit of Support:  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.

Note:

  • The signed Form I-864 must be accompanied with one of the following:  

– 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.

  • Applicants who apply for a visa at the U.S. Embassy in Tokyo: If you submitted an I-864 form when you filed I-130 petition, you do not present additional tax return or supporting documents unless you were requested to do so.
  • Applicants who apply for a visa at the US Consulate Naha: Please submit an I-864 form, most recent tax return and W-2 on the final Immigrant Visa interview day.

DV(Diversity), SB1(Returning Resident), and most of the Employment Visa applicants are not required to submit an I-864. (Please check here for more info.)

Medical Examination:  The U.S. Public Health Service requires all immigrant visa applicants to have a medical examination at a designated facility. We cannot accept medical examinations completed by a physician in the United States or by the applicant’s own physician. You may obtain the medical examination forms from the doctor of designated facilities. Follow this link for a list of the vaccination requirements.

Police Certificate:  Applicant over 16 years of age must present a certificate from the appropriate police authorities. This certificate should provide any information contained in police files concerning the applicant. Applicants must obtain police certificates from their country of nationality, and their current country of residence if the applicant resided there for six months or more after the age of 16, and, all countries where the applicant resided for one year or more after the age of 16.  If an applicant was arrested for any reason, a police certificate must be obtained regardless of age and length of residency in the country.

For country-specific guidelines on how to obtain a police certificate, review the Country Documents section at Reciprocity by Country.

Note:

  • Japanese Police Certificates are sealed. If the seal is broken, the certificate is no longer valid. Do not open the certificate prior to submission to the Embassy/Consulate.
  • Police certificates are not required from the United States.
  • Police certificates expire after one year, unless the applicant has not returned to the country since the police certificate was issued.
Applicants from U.S. Military base: If you have lived on base for six months or more, a local military base police records check must be submitted.  See U.S. Military Family Applicants.
Court and Prison Records:  Applicants who have been in court or prison must present certified copies of each court or prison record along with certified English translations. These records are required, even if the applicant was acquitted or benefitted from an amnesty, pardon or other act of clemency.
Military Discharge Records:  The records must describe the nature of any military service the applicant has performed.  Records from the Japan Self Defense Forces are available from the unit commander.  See country specific information at Reciprocity by Country.
Front View Photos:  Two identical color 5 cm x 5 cm photos with a white background, taken within the last six months are required.  The head (measured from the top of the hair to the bottom of the chin) should measure between 25 to 35 mm with the head centered in the frame facing straight ahead.  All applicants must provide photos, regardless of age.  Eye glasses are not allowed in the visa photos.
U.S. Mailing Address and Telephone Number:  USCIS will mail your green card to an address in the United States (United States in this regards includes 50 States, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, Guam, the Virgin Islands, and Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands of the United States). This address must be a street/civilian address or post office box, include Care Of, if necessary.  On-base military addresses are not acceptable.
Self-Addressed, Pre-Paid Envelope:  All applicants must provide a self-addressed, pre-paid envelope passport/visa return by mail. Processing and mailing may take approximately one week or more.  The “LetterPack Plus” can be purchased at post offices and some convenience stores throughout Japan.  Please make sure to write “documents” on the “Contents Description” field otherwise the delivery may be delayed.  Please note that all applicants must provide a local Japanese address.  This includes members and dependents of the U.S. military, who must use their base’s local address if no other local address is available.

Application Fee:  The immigrant visa processing fee should be paid at the Embassy/Consulate cashier in Yen or U.S. dollars on the day of your interview. Please DO NOT pay the fee through the Non-Immigrant visa Web site. The application fee paid for a wrong visa category will not be accepted and cannot be refunded.

You may pay by cash, or credit card (Visa, Mastercard, Discover, American Express, Diner’s Club, and JCB) or by money order payable to “U.S. Embassy, Tokyo”.  Note:  Please also be prepared to pay with cash in case the credit card verification system is temporarily unavailable.  Payment by credit card is billed in U.S. dollars.

This immigrant visa application fee is a separate fee from an I-130 petition filing fee.

This fee is non-refundable, even if an applicant is found ineligible for a visa.  Each applicant, regardless of age, needs a separate visa and is required to pay a separate fee.  If you paid the fee to the National Visa Center (NVC) already then you do not need to pay again at the time of the interview.

Beneficiaries of family-sponsored petitions must also include:
Proof of Relationship:  Please provide all original documents used to establish the qualifying family relationship.

 

Important Notice:  Before the interview, please read the Interview Day Considerations.

Once you have all the necessary documents:

    • Request an Immigrant Visa appointment in Tokyo
    • Request an Immigrant Visa appointment in Naha

 

Postpone Your Visit to the Embassy/Consulate
If You Have Flu Symptoms!
The U.S. Embassy and Consulates in Japan request that any persons who have an appointment and who feel unwell or otherwise exhibit flu-like symptoms, (such as fever, body aches, headache, pain when you move your eyes, fatigue, and a dry cough, runny nose and dry or sore throat) postpone their visits to the consular section. If you currently have or develop flu-like symptoms please reschedule your appointment.

 

Note:  If your petition was filed in the United States, it will first be sent to the National Visa Center (NVC) for processing.  The NVC will notify you of your appointment date and forward your case to the appropriate embassy or consulate in Japan.