How to Fix a 221(g) Administrative Processing Refusal

How to Fix a 221(g) Administrative Processing Refusal

When adjudicating an immigrant or non immigrant visa application, a consular officer may determine that additional information from sources other than the applicant may help establish an applicant’s eligibility for a visa.  In such cases, refused visa applications warrant further administrative processing.   Upon completion of the case-specific administrative processing, the consular officer might conclude that an applicant is now qualified for the visa for which he or she applied. Alternatively, the officer may conclude that the applicant remains ineligible for a visa.  When administrative processing is required, the consular officer will inform the applicant at the end of the interview. The duration of the administrative processing will vary based on the individual circumstances of each case.

This means that there are essentially two types of 221(g) refusals.  The first type is basically a request for more evidence.  The applicant did not prove their case with the documents submitted and they are provided with another opportunity to supply the required documents before a final decision is made.  In this situation, the applicant has one year to provide the requested documents and since this is the applicant’s final opportunity to present their case, this must be undertaken with great care.  The second type of 221(g) refusal relates to administrative processing.  In this situation, the Embassy needs additional information but they need it from a third party – not from the applicant.  Usually, administrative processing can be resolved in a matter of weeks but depending on individual circumstances, it can cause multiyear delays.  Fortunately, if an applicant’s situation presents a unique hardship, we can work with the Embassy to close the administrative processing delay and expedite a decision on the visa application.

We have successfully helped many clients obtain visas after 221(g)s were issued.  If you need our help to overturn a 221(g) refusal, please feel free to contact us at 305 515 0613 or email us at

L1 Visa Stamping Delays

My company filed an L1 visa application for me which was approved in September of 2009. I went to apply for the L1 visa stamp in Madrid but was told that they could not issue the visa due to an “internal administrative process.” What is an internal administrative process? Does this mean that they will not issue the visa? Can I go to another Consulate to apply?

We’ve seen this type of issue before and it has always been related to either an FBI name check issue or anti-fraud measure that required a site visit by a USCIS hired private investigator. I would not recommend applying for the visa stamp at another Consulate until this is resolved. In our experience, it typically takes 1-2 months to complete the review.