Q:

What is the purpose of Form DS-261?

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Quick Answer

Form DS-261 is the electronic version of Form DS-3032, Choice of Address and Agent, according to U.S. Immigration. Form DS-3032 allows the applicant to designate an agent in the United States, such as an attorney or petitioner, to receive correspondence from the National Visa Center, manage paperwork and pay required fees, states immihelp. The agent cannot sign on the applicant’s behalf.

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Full Answer

The National Visa Center does not require an applicant to have an agent, but an unrepresented applicant must still fill out the form to establish a foreign address for correspondence. The National Visa Center does not require this form if the applicant is self-petitioning or in the case of child adoptions, explains immihelp. The National Visa Center also waives the requirement if U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services submits a G-28 form for the applicant and the applicant’s agent is an attorney. Applicants have one year to submit the form to keep their cases open.

Although the National Visa Center designed Form DS-261 to eventually replace DS-3032, it is only available in select locations and for applicants interviewing in Mexico at a United States Embassy or Consulate, according to U.S. Immigration. Other locations include Montreal, Canada; Athens, Greece; Amman, Jordan; Baghdad, Iraq; and Lima, Peru, as of 2015.

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