Frequently Asked Questions - R Visa

R-1 Petitions and Processing Times

The USCIS website shows that processing times for both the R-1/R-2

R-1 Extension

An alien who has spent five years in the United States in R-1 status may not be readmitted to or receive an extension of stay in the United States under the R visa classification, unless the alien has resided abroad and has been physically present outside the United States for the immediate prior year.  However, if you were outsid

Notice of Intent to Deny for R-1 Petition

If an onsite inspection yields derogatory information not known to the petitioner, USCIS will issue a “Notice of Intent to Deny” the petition.  The petitioner may submit additional documentation to rebut the derogatory evidence.  If the petition is then denied, the denial may be appealed to the USCIS Administrative Appeals Office.

Immigrant Petition and R-1 Visa

No. Religious workers are not permitted to file Form I-360 (immigrant petition) concurrently with Form I-485 (petition to adjust status to permanent resident). You must wait until your I-360 is approved before you can file you Form I-485.

On-site Inspection as a Condition of Approving R-1 Visa

The on-site inspection may include the following:

 1. A tour of the organization’s facilities and, if appropriate, the organization’s headquarters or satellite location;

2. An interview with the organization’s officials;

3. A review of the organization’s records related to compliance with immigration laws and regulations; and

Notice of Intent to Deny and R-1 petition

If an onsite inspection yields derogatory information not known to the petitioner, USCIS will issue a Notice of Intent to Deny the petition. The petitioner may submit additional documentation to rebut the derogatory evidence. In addition, if the petition is denied, the denial may be appealed to the USCIS Administrative Appeals Office.

Religious Denomination’s and R Visa

If the denomination does not require a prescribed theological education, provide the religious denomination’s requirements for ordination to minister, a list of duties performed by virtue of ordination, the denomination’s levels of ordination, if any, and evidence of the religious worker’s completion of the denomination’s requirements for ordination.

Petition for a nonimmigrant religious worker

Every petition for a nonimmigrant religious worker (R-1) classification must be initiated by a prospective or existing employer.

Extension of R-1 status

An extension of an R-1 status may be granted for up to an additional 30 months. The total stay in the United States in an R-1 status cannot exceed 60 months (5 years).

Premium Processing for R-1

Premium Processing will be permitted only for those petitioners who have previously completed a successful on-site inspection at the location where the beneficiary will be employed.