The U.S. Department of State (DOS) has recently introduced a major change in consular processing procedures, impacting Russian citizens who are parents of U.S. citizens (USCs). With current restrictions preventing Russians from entering Poland, the DOS has designated the U.S. Embassy in Uzbekistan (Tashkent) and the U.S. Embassy and Consulate in Kazakhstan (Almaty) as alternative processing posts for Russian IR-5 cases. This article highlights the significance of this development and its implications for Russian families navigating the immigration process.

Relief from Restrictions:

Due to the travel restrictions imposed on Russians entering Poland, the DOS has taken proactive measures to ensure a smooth consular processing experience for Russian IR-5 applicants. The IR-5 visa category specifically caters to parents of U.S. citizens seeking to immigrate to the United States. Previously, the U.S. Embassy in Warsaw served as the primary processing post for Russian IR-5 cases. However, the new alternative solution aims to address the challenges faced by affected families.

New Processing Posts:

To overcome the hurdles associated with the restrictions, the DOS has designated Tashkent and Almaty as additional processing posts for Russian IR-5 cases. This decision allows Russian applicants to complete their consular processing in these locations, bypassing the obstacles posed by entering Poland.

Implications for Russian Families:

The introduction of these processing posts brings significant relief to Russian parents of USCs who have encountered difficulties and uncertainties throughout their immigration journey. By acknowledging the restrictions faced by Russians and offering an alternative solution, the DOS demonstrates its commitment to address the unique circumstances of Russian applicants. This change emphasizes the importance of family reunification and efficient immigration processes.

A Step Towards Further Improvements:

While the current announcement focuses on parents of USCs, we are optimistic that the DOS will extend similar considerations to all Russian applicants involved in consular processing. With evolving immigration policies and travel restrictions due to the ongoing pandemic, it is crucial for individuals to stay informed about updates and developments that impact specific visa categories and processing posts.


The addition of Tashkent and Almaty as processing posts for Russian IR-5 cases marks a significant milestone in alleviating the challenges faced by Russian families seeking to immigrate to the United States. By recognizing the restrictions on entering Poland and providing alternative solutions, the DOS showcases its commitment to adapt and cater to the needs of applicants. This change is anticipated to pave the way for further improvements, ultimately benefiting all Russians engaged in consular processing. To navigate the ever-changing landscape of consular processing effectively, it is advisable to stay informed and seek guidance from immigration professionals.

About the Author

Alexandra Sarrine
Senior Counsel at Garvish Immigration Law Group | (800)951-4980 | | Profile | + posts

Alexandra Vasquez Sarrine is Senior Counsel at Garvish Immigration Law Group, LLC in Atlanta, Georgia. She has been practicing immigration law since 2012. Prior to joining Garvish Immigration Law Group, Alexandra worked at another Atlanta-based immigration law firm, focusing her practice on family-based immigration and removal defense. Now, Alexandra focuses her practice on employment-based immigration, assisting businesses obtain nonimmigrant and immigrant visas for their employees, as well as family-based immigration including waivers.