After a 20+ year hiatus in domestic visa processing, the Department of State is launching a pilot program to resume limited state-side processing of visa renewals in early 2024. According to a recent State Department announcement, the new pilot program will allow some individuals in the U.S. with visas to renew those visas without leaving the country or attending an interview at a U.S. Embassy or consulate outside the United States.
Although the details of the new pilot program have not yet been released by the Department, the program is expected to be initially limited to only H-1B visa holders in valid status in the United States. H-4 dependents and those who hold visas for other categories (e.g., TN, TD, L-1, L-2, O-1, etc.), will not be able to take advantage of this domestic visa process when the program begins. If the program is a success, it may be expanded to other categories of work-authorizing visas.
In the coming weeks, we expect to learn more details including the launch date and the process for submitting renewal requests. We will provide additional information once it has been announced by the Department of State.