Chapter 1 - Purpose and Background

A. Purpose

The foreign information media representative nonimmigrant visa classification, commonly known as the “I” visa category, is intended to be used by representatives of the foreign media, including members of the following industries: 

  • Press;

  • Radio;

  • Film; and

  • Print. 

In addition, certain employees of independent production companies may also be eligible for a foreign information media representative visa classification under certain conditions. 

B. Background

The foreign information media representative visa classification was created by the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) of 1952[1] in order to facilitate the exchange of information among nations. Foreign information media representatives do not require a visa petition approved by USCIS. Consular officers with the U.S. Department of State primarily adjudicate benefit requests for foreign information media representatives during the nonimmigrant visa application process. USCIS generally only receives a request for this visa classification when a nonimmigrant applies for a change of status or an extension of stay as a foreign information media representative. 

C. Legal Authorities


[^ 1] See Pub. L. 82-414 (PDF), 66 Stat. 163, 168-169 (June 27, 1952). 

Current as of July 30, 2021