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Refusal: 214(b)

Section 214(b) of the United States Immigration and Nationality Act requires that Consular Officers must assume that every visa applicant intends to leave his or her home country and immigrate to the United States.  The applicant must convey during the interview that this presumption of immigrant intent is not true. 

The Consular Officer must be convinced that the applicant: 

  1. Has a home outside the United States that they will not abandon;
  2. Is visiting the United States temporarily and will leave when the stated purpose of travel is complete;
  3. Is able to pay for the trip; and
  4. Meets the requirements of the visa type for which they are applying, and/or that planned activities in the U.S. are allowed by that category.

Supporting Documents

Nonimmigrant visas are interview-based.  Interviewing officers rely on statements made by the applicant to determine visa eligibility, although they may consult supporting documents such as affidavits of support, travel arrangements, employment letters or financial statements to verify statements made in the interview.

Why you were refused

As each person's situation is different, there is no single reason that explains all refusals.  The most common reason for being refused is that the officer decided, based on your interview, that your social, family, economic or other ties to India are not strong enough to overcome the presumption of immigrant intent and qualify for a visa. 

"Ties" are the various aspects of life that bind you to India, such as family relationships, employment commitments, possessions and other factors.

Another common reason for a refusal is that during the interview, you did not demonstrate to the officer's satisfaction that you meet the qualifications for the visa category, or that your planned activities in the U.S. are allowed by that category.

Can I reapply?

Section 214(b) denials are not permanent. If you have new information or if your overall circumstances have changed significantly, you may reapply.  Applicants who provide identical information in a second interview rarely get a different result. 


The I-20 does not entitle you to a visa. This form only states that you have been accepted to a school in the U.S.  Students must show that they are credible, qualified students and that they intend to leave the U.S. after they finish their studies. 

Students may be ineligible if it appears that their primary purpose is an indefinite stay in the U.S. for themselves or their family.

Visa Consultants

Some applicants hire "visa consultants" that promise a visa will be issued. While some consultants provide helpful information, many do not.

As part of their “services,” consultants sometimes sell fake financial packages or encourage parents who wish to visit children in the U.S. to lie about the number or location of their other children. Applicants who provide false information during a visa interview may be permanently ineligible for a visa  to the U.S.

Remember: You alone are responsible for the accuracy of the information in your application. Intentionally submitting false information either on the application itself or during the visa interview can lead to a permanent visa ineligibility. Never submit your application without reviewing it first for accuracy if you have had help filling it out.

Applicants who receive interview coaching by consultants should also be wary of such services. The end result is that every client from a particular consultant sounds exactly like one another. This diminishes credibility among those who memorize the “correct” answers and cannot hold free-flowing conversations with visa officers.