203(g) Visa Canceled – What Does It Really Mean?


I’m Josh Goldstein, an immigration lawyer based in Los Angeles, California. Today, I want to talk about a very important message that so many of my clients are getting. Everybody is racing out to ask me questions about this. And chances are that you’ve been getting a very similar message.


The message

It says, “Section 203(g) of the Immigration and Nationality Act requires that your registration be canceled and any petition approved on your behalf be canceled as well if you do not apply for your immigration visa within one year of being advised to do so.

“You were advised of this requirement over a year ago but we have not received a response from you since then. As a result, your application for a visa has been canceled and any petition approved on your behalf has also been canceled.”


A system-wide glitch

I take this message with a grain of salt. What I mean by that – if you don’t know that expression – is that I don’t really believe this. I think it’s a system-wide glitch. I don’t have any basis for saying this. But I’ll tell you that I’ve had at least six clients call me, text me, email me, or message me through WhatsApp and they’ve all gotten the same message. If you’re getting this message, note that it’s probably a system-wide glitch.


I checked with the US Attorney’s Office

Here’s what happened when I got the message. I took a screenshot of my client’s message. It was for a mandamus case where we had challenged a delay. And I had emailed it to the US Attorney’s Office in Washington, D.C.

I said, “My client got this message and is super concerned because she’s done everything she’s supposed to do and she got this message saying that her visa was canceled. Can you please check with the State Department to make sure that this is accurate?” And he got back to me and he said, “I heard back from someone and they believe that it’s a system-wide glitch. It’s not confirmed yet.”


You can rest easy

I think you should sleep easy if you got this message. It probably doesn’t mean what it says it means. Why would they send out these messages that are so misleading and inaccurate?

Well, another example of this happened when they sent out the message to everyone in early March to say that their visas were refused. I think you should relax if you got this message and keep in mind that it may not be an accurate message. If you have questions, let me know. I hope this is helpful.

Josh Goldstein
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