Immigrant Visa Information

Overview

In general, a person who wishes to immigrate to the United States must have a petition approved by the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) before applying for an immigrant visa. The petition is filed either by a qualified relative or a potential employer at a USCIS office in the United States. Specific information about filing immigrant petitions is available on the USCIS website.  An individual with an approved petition and a priority date that is current for processing (when applicable) is eligible to apply for an immigrant visa or K nonimmigrant visa.

Petitions in Nigeria

The U.S. Embassy in Abuja does not accept immigrant visa petitions. The U.S. Consulate General in Lagos processes all immigrant visa applications in Nigeria. The Immigrant Visa Unit in Lagos accepts I-130 petitions for immediate relative immigrant classification from American citizens who are resident in Nigeria. To demonstrate residency, the American citizen petitioner must be able to show permission to reside in Nigeria (e.g. Nigerian Permanent Resident status, an Employment Status, or other permanent status) and must have been resident in Nigeria for at least six months before filing the petition. American citizens who are in Nigeria on temporary status, such as students or tourists, do not meet the residency standard and must file their petitions directly with the domestic United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) office having jurisdiction over the American citizen's place of residence.

If you wish to petition for a beneficiary, please bring the following documents with you to the Embassy:

  • A completed Form I-130 signed by the petitioner.
  • The petitioner's and beneficiary's email addresses.
  • A completed biographic data form (Form G-325A), one each for the petitioner and the beneficiary, with a passport-type photo attached to bottom of each form.
  • A copy of evidence (e.g. immigration documents, KITAS, a long-term visa or other permission from Nigerian immigration authorities) proving the petitioner's lawful, long-term residence of more than 6 months in Nigeria prior to filing the I-130.
  • Civil documents issued under the original seal, stamp or signature of the government office of record - one copy now with the original to be presented later (notarized copies, religious documents and hospital records are unacceptable):
    • The petitioner's proof of U.S. citizenship (e.g. birth certificate, naturalization certificate, or passport)
    • Proof of the beneficiary's birth (showing the beneficiary's parents' information) and birth of all children of the beneficiary, even if those children are not now being petitioned
    • Proof of legal relationship between the petitioner and the beneficiary (e.g. official birth, marriage, divorce, death, adoption and/or legal name change certificates). For I-130s filed on behalf of a spouse, official proof of the current marriage and the termination of both party's prior marriages.
  • A complete English translation of any non-English document. Anyone proficient in both languages may translate, sign and date an attached statement stating: I am competent in English and [insert name of second language] and this is a correct and true translation. Notarization is unnecessary.
  • A photocopy of each document or pay US$1.00 for each document photocopied at the Embassy.
Medical Requirements

All applicants must undergo a medical exam by an Embassy-approved Panel Physician. Information about the medical exam can be found here. You will receive instructions about how to schedule an appointment for your medical exam from NVC or the Embassy. Do not try to make an appointment before receiving these instructions.

Embassy Appointment

If you have an interview date, you must appear at the Embassy on the date of your appointment. You should arrive at the Embassy fifteen minutes before your appointment. Please read about security restrictions at the Embassy that describe what you can and cannot bring with you to your interview. You should bring your appointment letter and the documents required for your visa class.

Visa Delivery

All immigrant visa applicants must collect their newly-issued visa at a VFS document collection office. This service is provided for no additional fee. You must choose the location where you wish to collect your visa prior to scheduling your interview. You can choose your collection location here. Either you or your representative must have your Immigrant Case Number (as shown in the Embassy notification letter) available if calling the call center to register your visa collection preference.