Department of State Revoking Non-Immigrant Visas for DUI Arrests

A recently published regulation authorizes the U.S. Department of State to immediately revoke any non-immigrant visa upon notification that a visa holder has an arrest or conviction for driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs within the past five years, unless the arrest has already been addressed within the context of a previous visa interview.  The visa holder will typically be informed of the revocation by a representative from the U.S. Consulate where the visa was issued, and will be encouraged to depart the United States in order to apply for a new visa (although there is no requirement to do so while the individual remains in valid non-immigrant status).

Individuals in this situation who choose to immediately depart the United States following the revocation of the visa in order to apply for a new visa will be subject to a mandatory medical examination by a consulate-affiliated physician to determine whether their drug or alcohol use constitutes a substance-related disorder that may pose, or has posed, a threat to the property, safety, or welfare of the individual or others.  Such a finding would temporarily render an applicant ineligible to receive a visa (typically for at least one year) and the applicant must undergo a subsequent medical exam and be found to no longer have a substance-related disorder.  Any applicant that has ever been found ineligible to receive a visa due to a substance-related disorder will be required to undergo a new medical exam with each new non-immigrant visa application.

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