The State Department's rules that made same-sex spousal visas difficult to obtain in the U.S. would soon be invalidated by the Supreme Court's new marriage guidelines. This prompted the swift action.
Secretary of State John Kerry will announce today that U.S. consulates worldwide will extend the same visa privileges to same-sex spouses as to other married couples.
The decision applies to legally recognized spouses of U.S. citizens and non-U.S. citizens, and takes immediate effect. The change in procedure resulted from an Obama administration review of U.S. government agencies’ rules that discriminated against same-sex couples and might be invalidated by the Supreme Court’s decision to overturn the Defense of Marriage Act, a State Department official who asked not to be identified in advance of the announcement told reporters traveling with Kerry.
Same-sex couples who may take advantage of spousal visas to visit or work in the U.S. must have a legally recognized marriage; unmarried same-sex partners will not be eligible.
Kerry will visit the U.S. consulate in London, one of 222 U.S. visa centers worldwide, to highlight the start of the new procedures.
Editors: Leslie Hoffecker and Larry Liebert.
To contact the reporter on this story: Indira A.R. Lakshmanan in Washington at firstname.lastname@example.org. To contact the editor responsible for this story: John Walcott at email@example.com.
Subscribe to Skift Pro
Subscribe to Skift Pro to get unlimited access to stories like these ($30/month)Subscribe Now
U.S. to Ease Travel Restrictions for All Vaccinated Travelers Worldwide From November
This is the most significant international travel news since the start of pandemic restrictions being put in place. Watch travel bookings go crazy — and the share prices of travel companies.
Rashaad Jorden | 16 hours ago
U.S. Considers Vaccine Requirement for International Travelers
Vaccine requirements are a no-brainer to reopen U.S. borders to the rest of the world. But don't expect this to happen overnight — the Delta variant is still a major headwind and concern to those who have to approve any kind of reopening.
David Shepardson, Reuters | 5 days ago