What is the change? Turkish diplomatic posts in the United States have resumed issuance of non-immigrant visas to U.S. nationals for business travel and tourism.

What does the change mean? While the Turkish Ministry of Foreign Affairs has confirmed that all diplomatic posts in the U.S. are issuing business and tourist visas, e-visa applications remain unavailable to U.S. nationals, and visas on arrival are only granted to those with residence status outside of the U.S.

Turkish consulates in the U.S. are currently accepting applications by appointment only and most are requiring that applicants appear in person to submit them. However, those who qualify due to “limited circumstances” (i.e. for medical reasons, family emergencies, participation in international conference, athletic activities, diplomatic needs and non-tourist trips for children under the age of 18) are still allowed to walk in without an appointment to submit applications.

  • Implementation time frame: Ongoing.
  • Visas/permits affected: Business and tourist visas issued at Turkish diplomatic posts in the U.S.
  • Who is affected: U.S. nationals applying for business and tourist Turkish visas in the U.S.
  • Impact on processing times: Due to a high volume of applications and increasing backlogs of available appointment times, applicants should anticipate longer processing times.

Background: In early October, the U.S. and Turkey mutually suspended the issuance of non-immigrant visas following the arrest of a U.S. consulate worker in Turkey. Last month, both countries began processing non-immigrant visas again, but only on a limited basis.

BAL Analysis: While the situation between the U.S. and Turkey remains fluid, the resumption of non-immigrant visa issuances at all Turkish consular missions in the U.S. is welcome news and signals easing tensions between the two countries. Those planning to travel either from the U.S. to Turkey or from Turkey to the U.S. should work with BAL to discuss current requirements by the consulates well in advance of travel. Travelers should take into account likely delays due to the backlogs of appointment times.

This alert has been provided by the BAL U.S. and Global Practice groups and the Bener Law Office in Istanbul. For additional information, please contact your BAL attorney.

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