The Department of State recently updated its guidelines regarding the review of Blanket L visa applications, stating that applicants must demonstrate their eligibility by “clear and convincing evidence.” Further, consular officers are directed by the new guidelines to deny Blanket L applications if any questions about an applicant’s eligibility cannot be quickly and easily resolved during the interview.
Under longstanding guidelines, Blanket L-1 visa applicants at U.S. consulates must demonstrate that their applications are “clearly approvable,” while USCIS petitions are subject to a lower “preponderance of the evidence” standard. While the new guidelines do not change the standard by which consular officers approve Blanket L applications, they may result in higher application denial rates. Blanket L-1 visa applicants should be prepared to describe their qualifications as clearly as possible during their interviews in order to lessen the chance of denial for their applications.
Please do not hesitate to contact our office with any further questions regarding this matter.