Unmarried A and G Domestic Partners May No Longer Be Eligible for Visas as “Immediate Family Members”

In recent communication, it appears that the Department of State will only accept the accreditation of spouses of newly arrived officers and employees of international organizations and embassy staff, both same-sex and opposite-sex, as members of the immediate family of the principal A or G visa holder, as of October 1, 2018. Domestic partners accompanying them or seeking to join them must be married in order to be eligible for a derivative nonimmigrant visa. Moreover, effective October 1, 2018, domestic partners who need to renew their visa must be married in order to do so. In communication circulating within this international community, the State Department reiterated that the spouse must not be a member of some other household and must reside regularly in the household of the principal. Currently accredited same-sex domestic partners – who do not need to renew their visas now – have until December 31, 2018 to marry. While an official announcement has not yet been published on the State Department’s web site, the prospect of this change is certainly troubling.


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