U.S. Nonimmigrant Visa Application Legal Wizard [Global]

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What does this U.S. Nonimmigrant Visa Application Legal Wizard [Global] do?

This innovative Legal Wizard includes Embedded Lawyer-Logic designed to help you decide whether it is appropriate (including whether you might be eligible for a Visa Waiver) for you to make an application for a U.S. Nonimmigrant Visa, and if so, this Legal Wizard will guide you step-by-step:

⚖️ To decide whether you are eligible for a Visa Waiver. If a Visa Waiver is suitable for your intended travel purposes you DO NOT need to proceed to apply for a Nonimmigrant Visa; alternatively

⚖️ To decide which Nonimmigrant Visa category is the most suitable based on the primary intended purpose of your travel;

⚖️ What preliminary approvals and supporting paperwork are required;

⭐️ Provide helpful tips to make the process smoother; and

⚖️ Assist you to make, pay for and progress your application.


This Legal Wizard assumes:

⚖️ The U.S. Nonimmigrant DS-160 Online Visa Application is the correct ⭐️ Visa for your intended temporary travel to the U.S, or if you are applying for a K (fiancé(e)) visa; and

⚖️  You have a Passport with the required period of validity~ and have not yet applied and are legally eligible to apply for a U.S. Nonimmigrant Visa or Visa Waiver.

~ Citizens of approved Countries are exempt from the otherwise applicable minimum 6-month passport validity rule which normally means that your passport must be valid for 6 months after your intended date of departure from the U.S.

If you are a Citizen of one of these Countries, your Passport is only required to be valid for your intended period of stay in the U.S.

Source: U.S. Customs and Border Protection

List of Counties that Extend Passport Validity for an Additional Six Months After Expiration dated March 16, 2022.

Step-by-Step Guide

Preliminary Step ➲ Do you qualify for a U.S. Nonimmigrant Visa Waiver?

If your temporary travel to the U.S. is for 90 days or less and you are a Citizen/National of one of the below 40 U.S. Nonimmigrant Visa Waiver Program [VWP] Member Countries this Legal Wizard will guide you to determine whether you qualify for a Visa Waiver and whether a Visa Waiver is appropriate to your intended travel purposes.

U.S. Nonimmigrant Visa Waiver Program [VWP] Member Countries

Currently, 40 countries participate in the U.S. Nonimmigrant Visa Waiver Program:

Andorra, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Brunei, Chile^, Croatia^, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Monaco, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Poland^, Portugal, San Marino, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan and the United Kingdom*.

Eligible nationals of all member countries must obtain an ESTA (application fee $21 USD) prior to travel to the United States.

They must also have a passport that meets the requirements outlined here.

^ Member counties that have recently joined.

* Only United Kingdom passports notated with “British Citizens” and/or “with unrestricted right of abode in the United Kingdom” are eligible for VWP admission. Holders of passports indicating that the bearer is a British Subject, British Dependent Territories Citizen, British Overseas National or British National (Overseas) do not qualify for the VWP.

Preliminary Step ➲ Are you legally eligible to apply for a U.S. Nonimmigrant Visa?

This Legal Wizard provides a list of the major grounds that will or may operate to deem you legally ineligible to be granted a Nonimmigrant Visa.

For a list of visa ineligibilities contained in section 212(a) of the Immigration and Nationality Act see Ineligibilities and Waivers: Laws.

1️⃣ Which category of Nonimmigrant Visa is the most appropriate for your intended travel purposes?

This Legal Wizard provides a comprehensive list of potential Nonimmigrant Visa Categories that are associated with typical primary intended travel purposes.

If you are uncertain about whether you are eligible for your selected [Visa category] please contact our legal team to discuss your specific circumstances in more detail.

This Legal Wizard automatically prompts you to take the required action when your selected [Visa category] requires additional approval/s from U.S. government agencies before you can proceed with your application

2️⃣ Ensure you are using a Supported Internet Browser

✅ Use only Internet Explorer 11 or higher, Firefox, or Google Chrome 58 when completing your DS-160 Application.

❌ Safari and Microsoft Edge are not supported.

3️⃣ Apply using the U.S. Nonimmigrant DS-160 Online Visa Application Form

Access the online DS-160 by clicking: Consular Electronic Application Center website.

The DS-160, Online Nonimmigrant Visa Application form, is for temporary travel to the United States, and for K (fiancé(e)) visas.

Form DS-160 is submitted electronically to the Department of State website via the Internet.

Consular Officers use the information entered on the DS-160 to process the visa application and, combined with a personal interview, determine an Applicant’s eligibility for a nonimmigrant visa.

Visa applicants must submit a completed DS-160, Online Nonimmigrant Visa Application for all nonimmigrant visa categories, including applicants applying for K visas. (Note:  For K visa cases in process at a U.S. Embassy or Consulate prior to October 7, 2013, review the limited exceptions explained in the FAQs below.)

If you have any queries please review the Frequently Asked Questions for instructions about using the DS-160.

⭐️ Tip: Gather your supporting documents before you begin

You should have the following documents available while you complete your DS-160:

✅ Passport

✅ Travel itinerary, if you have already made travel arrangements.

✅ Dates of your last five visits or trips to the United States, if you have previously travelled to the United States.

You may also be asked for your international travel history for the past five years.

✅ Résumé or Curriculum Vitae - You may be required to provide information about your current and previous education and work history.

✅ Other Information - Some applicants, depending on the intended purpose of travel, will be asked to provide additional information when completing the DS-160.

⚖️ Students and Exchange Visitors (F, J, and M):

You will be asked to provide your SEVIS ID, which is printed on your I-20 or DS-2019, so you should have this form available when completing your DS-160.

You also will be asked to provide the address of the school/program at which you intend to study.

This information should also be on your I-20 or DS-2019 form.

⚖️ Petition-based Temporary Workers (H-1B, H-2, H-3, CW1, L, O, P, R, E2C):

You should have a copy of your I-129 available when completing your DS-160.

⚖️ Other Temporary Workers:

You will be asked for information about your employer, including the employer’s address, while completing your DS-160.

⭐️ Tip: Write down the Application ID

The Application ID is displayed on the top right hand corner of the page.

If you close your browser window, you will need your ID to access your application again.

⭐️ Tip: Save your Application Frequently

The system will time out after 20 minutes of inactivity, and you will lose all unsaved information.

⭐️ Tip: Language Translation Assistance

Most of the DS-160 Application has been translated.

To see the translation select your language (if it is available) from the Tooltip menu in the top right-hand corner of the screen.

Then point your mouse over any sentence on the page to view the translation.

If you have difficulty please refer to this Tooltip help page.

⭐️ Tip: If you plan to apply again in the future for a DS-160

Save your DS-160 to your hard drive or a disk using the following instructions:

Saving to a hard drive or disk will allow you to access your application after 30 days.

To permanently save your application to your computer hard drive or a disk, select the “Save Application to File” button.

Then, click the “Save” button on the File Download window.

Identify a place on your computer to save the application, browse to that location, and click the “Save” button on the “Save As” window.

The system will download your application to the specified location.

Once the download is complete, you can click “Close” to return to the live application on our website.

Note: Applications saved to the hard drive of a public or shared computer or memory device could likely be accessed by anyone else who uses the computer or device after you.

When you go to apply for your new visa you can then select “Option B-Upload a Previously Saved Application” on the Getting Started page.

Alternately, if your previous visa application was submitted after November 1, 2010, you can select “Option C-Retrieve Application,” enter your previous visa application ID, and then hit “Create a New Application.”

Your personal information will then populate the form.

Be careful to check that all previously submitted information is current and accurate.

4️⃣ Print & Keep the DS-160 Barcode Page

You DO NOT need to print the full application.

5️⃣ In-Person Interview Exemptions & Waiver (incl. temporary expansion valid to 31/12/22)

If you are in Australia please consult our FREE U.S. Nonimmigrant Visa Renewal (In-Person Interview Waiver) Legal Wizard [Australia].

Otherwise, please contact our legal team or consult your local U.S. Embassy to find out how you can determine whether you are exempt from having an in-person interview or qualify for an in-person interview waiver.

6️⃣ Schedule an In-Person Visa Interview Appointment

The U.S. Embassy or Consulate does not schedule an appointment for you.

Visit the U.S. Embassy or Consulate website where you will be interviewed for country-specific instructions.

7️⃣ Pay the Visa Application Processing Fee

Review country-specific instructions on the U.S. Embassy or Consulate website.

8️⃣ Expedited Appointment / Monitor Daily for New Appointment / Overseas Alternatives

If you are in Australia please consult our U.S. Nonimmigrant Visa Expedited Appointment Legal Wizard [Australia].

Otherwise, please contact our legal team or consult your local U.S. Embassy to find out whether you qualify for an emergency / expedited appointment +/or how you can monitor your local consulate's website to check for new appointments.

If the in-person interview wait times are too long you may consider whether an overseas alternative might allow you to obtain an earlier appointment which might ultimately speed up your visa application processing.

Important Notes:

This Legal Wizard was designed and tested in December 2022.

Other people can assist you with your visa application.

Note that under U.S. law (22 C.F.R. 41.103) you must electronically sign and submit your own application unless you qualify for an exemption.

Even if someone else helped you complete the application, you (the applicant) must click the “Sign Application” button, or your application may not be accepted.

The results from this Legal Wizard do not guarantee that you will be eligible under law to receive a U.S. Nonimmigrant Visa or Visa Waiver.  

You must meet all legal requirements of the U.S. Nonimmigrant Visa or Visa Waiver Program for which you are applying.

Intellectual Property Rights Notice

This Legal Wizard has been designed and developed with care 👨‍💻 by James D. Ford | Admitted to Practice as a Lawyer in Australia, New Zealand and California, U.S.A.| ⚖️ Principal Solicitor of Blue Ocean Law Group.

© 2022. Blue Ocean Law Group℠.

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What clients say

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James has been great to work with. I called him on a Monday and by Tuesday he had a formal [19-Page] Concerns Notice sent to a person defaming me and my business. He stayed in touch throughout the day, kept me updated regularly and was diligent to ensure we were exercising all of my rights under the law. Thanks, James!

Crystal Polson | Defamation & Injurious Falsehood [Vic]




May 2023

James was great, going above and beyond to help me with my enquiry. He provided detailed explanations with references to the appropriate regulations and case examples.

Siyuan W. | Landlord (NSW)


May 2023

We needed a really good lawyer and after doing our research we decided to contact Blue Ocean Law Group. James runs a very efficient service and has extensive knowledge of Defamation Law. Nothing was a problem. James would follow up with me regarding issues that had arisen. He dealt with each issue in a professional and ethical manner. James would explain every detail on the phone and the process could not have been easier!

Lake Macquarie Coastal Glass | Defamation Concerns Notice (NSW) [1 of 2]


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Mar 2023

Blue Ocean Law Group's website has plenty of information in easy, layman's language that explains how Defamation Law works in Australia and from there, it was really easy to book an appointment online. James is a thoroughly professional Lawyer and it was a pleasure dealing with him. Keep up the good work, James! Cheers! ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Lake Macquarie Coastal Glass | Defamation Concerns Notice (NSW) [2 of 2]


Mar 2023

(Translated by Google) Lawyer James Ford was the best. He assisted me all the way through a dispute with a tenant who tried his best to extort money from the landlord due to a conflict with another tenant. James is reliable in his profession amongst lawyers in this field ... James patiently guided me, a landlord whose English is my second language, throughout the whole process ... It was because of his command that my case was turned from a disadvantage to an advantage. His charges are also very reasonable. So if you are a landlord I would highly recommend 'James Ford' to you.

Carol Ma | NCAT Landlord Tenant Dispute (NSW)


Feb 2023

Very helpful and thorough advice. James was able to explain the options available to us in detail, and the implications involved. He was knowledgeable and very professional. Would definitely go to him again.

Haim Zagroon


Jan 2023

James was very patient and understood my legal issues. He gave me the most detailed answer he could and extended the time as he wanted to give me the answers I needed. He was very knowledgeable in his area and was able to offer me insightful advice. Would highly recommend.



Dec 2022

Our case was unique. My client was based in Thailand and we needed a lawyer in Australia. After searching several firms in NSW we found Blue Ocean Law Group. James was very helpful. He explained the matter in detail via emails and on several occasions over the phone to us in Thailand. The resources on the firm's website were also very helpful in providing additional information for us. I would highly recommend James and will use him again if we need a lawyer in Australia.

Samram Laepong


Dec 2022

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Nov 2022