Top Reasons Why an Immigration Visa Is Denied


For many, the USA is the country of their dreams. People aspire to go and settle there for a better life, thinking of the country as a goldmine of opportunities. There are various reasons that make one feel that way such as better economic opportunities, superior living conditions, excellent education system and a better social welfare system, among others.

But let’s face it, not everyone’s dream of becoming an American citizen is fulfilled. Not everyone who applies for the U.S. green card actually obtains one. The denial rates vary widely by category of green card. The statistics of denial rates between 6% and 50% are seen on a regular basis.

There are various reasons why the U.S. Immigration Authorities deny an immigration visa which are clearly stated in the Immigration and Nationality Act. By knowing about these beforehand, you can work on most of them and ensure that your success rate of acquiring the U.S. green card is high.

Let’s take a look at the top five reasons for an immigration visa denial.

1. Denial on the Basis of Criminal Records

Having a criminal record can act as a severe obstacle in obtaining U.S. citizenship.

There are a number of crimes that can lead to a green card denial, including crimes of moral turpitude, and other specific crimes such as drug trafficking, prostitution, commercialized vice, money laundering, severe violations of religious freedom as an official in a foreign government, and fraud.

Additionally, having two or more convictions on record for any type of crime is a ground for inadmissibility. You need to provide honest answers to all the security or crime related questions in all the immigration forms that you fill. Not doing so will surely lead to visa denial.

If you have a criminal background, the best thing to do is consult with a highly reputable immigration attorney. This can make things easier and you will get a better understanding of the immigration laws and your case.

There are several ways to find a good immigration lawyer. Ask friends, colleagues or family members. You can also search for a lawyer in your area online. Let’s say you are searching for an immigration lawyer in Chicago, you could search online for immigration lawyer Chicago.  This can fetch you a lot of relevant results.

2. Health-Related Issues

When it comes to obtaining an immigration visa, your health plays a crucial role. In order to obtain admission as a lawful permanent resident, you need a medical exam report.

This medical exam is performed by a government-approved doctor. If you are found to have any communicable disease which can have implications on general public health, you can be denied a green card.

Additionally, if you fail to provide documentation depicting that you’ve taken the required vaccinations, and refuse to or cannot have them arranged before your green card can be approved, it can also lead to visa denial.

Being a drug abuser or an addict, having any physical or mental disorder that is a threat to yourself or others around you are also grounds for denial.

3. Violation of Laws

Violating the U.S. laws can not only land you in a lot of trouble but can also serve as a big reason for visa denial. For instance, if you have entered the United States illegally, such as sneaking in as a stowaway, or gained entry by misrepresenting facts, or failed to attend immigration removal proceedings, or have abused the visa process, , your application could be subject to denial. In some cases, there are chances that the denial will not be permanent, but only for certain number of years.

4. Failure to Meet the Basic Application Requirements

This is one of those reasons for visa denial which can be easily overcome, as the issues under this category can be  fixed by the applicant. This category consists of the following:

Failure to provide the required paperwork related to the immigration process such as numerous forms, fees and documents.

Missing information and forms.

As this category consists mainly of missing evidence, it can be easily sorted. In order to save yourself any hassle, you need to plan well in advance and ensure that your file consists of all the necessary documents. Additionally, bear in mind to attend all the immigration appointments on time.

5. Economic Grounds

In order to ensure that the population of immigrants depending on the U.S. government for economic assistance doesn’t increase, this stands as an important clause.

Immigrants who are likely to need economic support from the government will, typically, be denied green cards. This falls in the context of family-based immigrant petitions.

Keep in mind that the family petitioner’s/sponsor’s income needs to be sufficient to support the immigrant. If that’s not the case, the application can be supplemented by showing assets held by the immigrant, or by having a household member or other friend or relative additionally promise to provide economic support.

The sponsors will have to file an Affidavit of Support promising to be financially responsible for the immigrant for approximately ten years. The petitioner will also need to show a certain level of income and assets sufficient enough to support the immigrant and his family at 125% above the U.S. poverty line.


The process of obtaining a U.S. green card can seem quite arduous to the layman, owing to the intensive paperwork and several other legal requirements. The above points serve as top reasons for visa denials. But by taking care of all the minute details of the immigration procedure, you will surely save yourself from any hassle and ensure that your dream of becoming an American citizen comes true.

  • We Serve

    • We represent clients throughout Chicago and the Chicago land area
    • Bellwood
    • Berkley
    • Berwyn
    • Broadview
    • Brookfield
    • Cicero
    • Countryside
    • Evergreen Park
    • Forest Park
    • Hillside
    • Hodgkins
    • La Grange
    • La Grange Park
    • Lyons
    • Markham
    • Maywood
    • McCook
    • Melrose Park
    • North Riverside
    • Oak Lawn
    • Oak Park
    • River Forest
    • Riverside
    • Stickney
    • Stone Park
    • Summit
    • Westchester
    • Willow Springs
    • Cook County
    • Lake County
    • Will County
    • Du Page County
    • Kane County and the surrounding towns and areas.