Are you a diplomat, foreign government official, or a member of an international organization?
Will you be pursuing official duties in the United States?
If you answered “Yes” to the questions above, then the G visa may be appropriate for you! International Organization or G visas are issued to diplomats, other foreign government officials, and members of international organizations for travel to the United States on official duties. There are very specific requirements for obtaining a G visa. For example, some G visas require that the international organization which the applicant is representing be on a designated list of international organizations published by the U.S. government. An alphabetical listing of the designated international organizations is provided at the end of this chapter.
G Visa Categories:
- G-1: Permanent mission members of a recognized government to a designated international organization.
- G-2: Representatives of a recognized government who are traveling to the U.S. temporarily to attend meetings of a designated international organization.
- G-3: Representatives of non-recognized or non-member governments.
- G-4: Individuals who are proceeding to the U.S. to take up an appointment at a designated international organization, including the United Nations.
- G-5: Domestic staff of a G visa holder and the staff person’s immediate family.
What documents do I need to apply for a G Visa?
Those applying for a G visa will need:
- A diplomatic note. The diplomatic note is something in writing from the foreign government confirming the visa applicant’s status.
- A valid passport. Your passport must be valid for at least six months beyond the time you intend to stay in the U.S.
Is an interview and fingerprinting required for a G Visa?
Usually, visa applications require an interview of applicants at the embassy. However, for those applying for G-1, G-2, G-3, or G-4 visas, an interview is not required, but may be requested by the Consular Officer. Also, G-1 through G-4 visa applicants do not have to do a fingerprint scan. Conversely, G-5 visa applicants, the personal employees, attendants, and servants of G visa holders, are required to be interviewed and fingerprinted, as well.
Can I bring my family with me to the U.S. on a G Visa?
As a G visa holder, you can bring your immediate family, such as your spouse and unmarried sons and daughters (of any age), along with you to the U.S.
Can I bring my personal employees? And what documents do they need?
Yes. Personal employees, attendants, domestic workers, or servants of G-1 through G-4 visa holders may be issued a G-5 visa. Applicants for G-5 visas must apply abroad. As previously mentioned, an interview at the embassy or Consulate and fingerprinting is required. The Consular Officer will determine eligibility for the G-5 visa.
What documents are required for G-5 applicants?
The G-5 visa applicant employee must bring their employment contract. The applicant must make sure both the applicant and their employer have signed it. In addition, the contract must be in English and in a language that the employee can understand, in order to make sure he or she knows what their rights and duties are, in terms of pay and working conditions. The contract also has to say that the employee will be paid at the state or federal minimum wage, whichever is greater. The G-5 applicant employee has to promise that he or she will not accept any other work while they are working for their employer, and the employer has to promise that he or she will not take away the employee’s passport. Also, the contract must say that both the employee and his or her employer understands that the employee cannot be forced to stay on the premises after working hours, unless the employee will be paid overtime.
How long can I stay in the U.S. on a G Visa?
G-1 through G-4 visa holders are admitted into the U.S. for ”Duration of Status” (D/S), which means you can stay in the U.S. as long as the U.S. Secretary of State continues to recognize you as a member of the diplomatic category. You do not need to apply for extension of stay. As a G-5 visa holder, you are admitted for up to 3 years. Afterwards, you can apply for extensions for 2 years at a time.
The following is an alphabetical listing of the international organizations of which the United States is a member and which have been designated by Executive Order pursuant to various treaties or under the International Organizations Immunities Act of December 29, 1945.
- African Development Bank
- African Development Fund
- Asian Development Bank
- African Union
- Border Environmental Cooperation Commission
- Caribbean Organization
- Commission for Environmental Cooperation
- Commission for Labor Cooperation
- Commission for the Study of Alternatives to the Panama Canal
- Customs Cooperation Council
- European Bank for Reconstruction and Development
- European Space Agency (formerly the European Space Research Organization)
- Food and Agriculture Organization
- Global Fund
- Great Lakes Fishery Commission
- GRECO (Council of Europe in Respect of the Group of States Against Corruption)
- Hong Kong Economic and Trade Offices
- Inter-American Defense Board
- Inter-American Development Bank
- Inter-American Institute for Cooperation for Agriculture
- Inter-American Investment Corporation
- Inter-American Statistical Institute
- Inter-American Tropical Tuna Commission
- International Atomic Energy Agency
- International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (World Bank)
- International Boundary and Water Commission – the United States and Mexico
- International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes
- International Civil Aviation Organization
- International Coffee Organization
- International Committee of the Red Cross
- International Cotton Advisory Committee
- International Cotton Institute
- International Criminal Police Organization (INTERPOL) (Limited Privileges)
- International Development Association
- International Development Law Institute
- International Fertilizer Development Center
- International Finance Corporation
- International Food Policy Research Institute (Limited Privileges)
- International Fund for Agricultural Development
- International Hydrographic Bureau
- International Joint Commission – the United States and Canada
- International Labor Organization
- International Maritime Organization (formerly the Intergovernmental Maritime Consultative Organization)
- International Maritime Satellite Organization
- International Monetary Fund
- International Organization for Migration (Formerly Provisional Intergovernmental Committee for the Movement of Migrants for Europe and Intergovernmental Committee for European Migration.)
- International Pacific Halibut Commission
- International Secretariat for Volunteer Service
- International Telecommunications Satellite Organization (INTELSAT)
- International Telecommunication Union
- International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources (Limited Privileges)
- International Wheat Advisory Committee (International Wheat Council)
- Interparliamentary Union
- Israel-United States Binational Industrial Research and Development Foundation
- ITER International Fusion Energy Organization
- Korean Peninsula Energy Development Organization
- Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency
- Multinational Force and Observers
- North American Development Bank
- North Pacific Anadromous Fish Commission
- North Pacific Marine Science Organization.
- Organization for American States (including Pan American Union)
- Organization for Eastern Caribbean States
- Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (formerly the Organization for European Economic Cooperation)
- Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons
- Pacific Salmon Commission
- Pan American Health Organization (including Pan American Sanitary Bureau)
- South Pacific Commission
- United International Bureau for the Protection of Intellectual Property
- United Nations
- United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization
- United Nations Industrial Development Organization
- Universal Postal Union
- World Health Organization
- World Intellectual Property Organization
- World Meteorological Organization
- World Tourism Organization
- World Trade Organization
If you are a foreign government official, diplomat, or member of a designated international organization coming into the Unites States for official duties, the G Visa may be the right choice for you. Be sure to review the various G visa categories to determine the most appropriate one to fulfill your needs. If applicable, the organization that you are representing must be a member of the designated list of international organizations published by the U.S. (see below). As a G Visa holder, others such as your spouse, children, and domestic staff member may be allowed to enter into the U.S., as well.