Electronic Visa Update System becomes mandatory at the end of this month for certain non-immigrant travels to the U.S.


The Department of Homeland Security ("DHS") published its final regulations on October 20, 2016 regarding the Electronic Visa Update System ("EVUS"), a new system for collecting biographic and other information from nonimmigrant aliens coming to the U.S. The nonimmigrant aliens subject to these regulations must periodically enroll in EVUS and obtain a notification of compliance before travel to the U.S., in addition to obtaining a valid visa. The only country / visas the program applies to initially is the People's Republic of China for 10 year B-1, B-2, and combo B1/B2 visas holders, which are general business and tourist travel visas. Before issuing a notification of compliance, the free EVUS system will ask applicants to provide details about their biographical and employment data, travel details, and their contact information in the U.S., as well as questions about public health concern, questions about arrests or convictions for certain crimes, and past history of visa or admission denial.  

The EVUS enrollment will become mandatory on November 29, 2016 and remains valid for two years. This new system requires compliance for both new visa applicants from China, and those already issued B-1, B-2, and combo B1/B2 visas. Travelers who are subject to EVUS requirements but do not have valid enrollments will not be able to obtain a boarding pass or enter through a land port of entry. Please refer to CBP's Frequently Asked Questions on the EVUS system for more details.