The U.S. government has designated Russian nationals as “homeless nationals” and has directed them to apply for immigrant visas in Warsaw, Poland.

Key Points:

  • Russian nationals who are physically present in Russia should apply for immigrant visas and schedule their visa appointments at the U.S. Embassy in Warsaw.
  • Russian nationals who are physically present in the U.S. can apply for adjustment of status with the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and do not require visa processing abroad.
  • Russian nationals who are physically present in a third country can apply for an immigrant visa in that country, provided they can remain in the country legally for the duration of the application process.
  • Immigrant visa appointments in Moscow are reserved for life-or-death emergencies, and age-out cases at this time, according to the embassy website.

Additional Information: Generally, countries are added to the Homeless Nationalities list when the U.S. has no consular representation or when the political or security situation is tenuous or uncertain enough that staff is not authorized to process immigrant applications. Consular services in Russia have been strictly limited since May after the U.S. said it would curtail services following Russia’s move to bar U.S. Mission Russia from employing foreign nationals.

BAL Analysis: Immigrant visa services in Russia remain available only in very limited, emergency situations. Russian visa applicants should follow the State Department’s guidance; immigrant visa applicants in Russia should plan on booking their appointments at the U.S. Embassy in Warsaw. Nonimmigrant (temporary) visa services remain unavailable in Russia except for diplomatic or official travel. BAL will continue to monitor the situation and will provide updates on significant developments.

This alert has been provided by the BAL U.S. Practice group. For additional information, please contact

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