Sections 221(g), 214(b), and 212(a) Under USA Student Visa Refusals


Sristy Sharma
Updated on Jun 03, 2023 12:39 AM IST

The Immigration and Nationality Act establishes the reasons which make a visa applicant ineligible for a US student visa. Here is all about Sections 221(g), 214(b), and 212(a) which are the major reasons behind USA student visa refusals.

Sections 221(g), 214(b), and 212(a) Under USA Student Visa Refusals

F1 visa rejection reasons are often cited under INA Sections 221(g), 214(b), and 212 (a). Although the majority of US visa applications are approved, US law has laid out different criteria as reasons for US visa ineligibilities.

The Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) establishes the visa application assessment process. Under the law, there are various provisions that state the eligibility standards and other conditions which a visa applicant needs to satisfy to gain F1 visa approval.

Apart from these assessment criteria, the act also provides the consular officers overseeing the applications the right to reject them on the basis of their judgment. These rejections, however, cannot be random and must be able to satisfy the US visa ineligibilities.

Here are the three provisions of INASection 221(g), Section 214(b), and Section 212(a)(4), which are the main reasons behind F1 visa rejection.

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Reasons for Rejection of US Student Visa

US Immigration authorities are entitled to reject visa applications under the following sections of INA:

  • Section 221(g): Dissatisfaction with eligibility standards

  • Section 214(b): Probability of immigration intention

  • Section 212(a)(4): Possibility to become a Public Charge

  • Section 212(a)(6)(C)(i): Fraud and Misrepresentation

  • Section 212(a)(9)(B)(i): Unlawful presence in the US

Among these provisions, the first three including Section 221(g), Section 214(b), and Section 221(a)(4) are the main reasons behind the rejection of the majority of student visa applications.

Section 219 of the act provides the eligibility criteria and provisions stated above are grounds for ineligibility. Among the ineligibility standards, some are permanent and the rejection due to them cannot be appealed against or reviewed, while some can be appealed on the removal of ineligibility. There are some ineligibility standards that can also be waived under special circumstances.

Legal Provisions Behind US Student Visa Refusal

The Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) of the country governs the assessment process of visa applicants. The provisions which lead to the rejection of student visa include:

  • Section 221(g): Dissatisfaction with eligibility standards

  • Section 214(b): Probability of immigration intention

  • Section 212(a): Possibility to Become a Public Charge

Section 221(g) on USA Student Visa: Reasons and Action

When a consular officer assesses and reviews the visa application against the eligibility requirements, as stated under Section 219, and finds the applicant not fulfilling them to their satisfaction, it leads to visa refusal under Section 221g.

Rejection Basis

Inability to satisfy eligibility requirements

How to Resolve 221(g)

The rejection can be appealed for revision.

The consular officer may ask for the submission of certain supportive evidence or documents and the applicant may file an appeal for revision of the visa application by fulfilling these requirements.

Section 214(b) on USA Student Visa: Reasons and Action

Section 214b visa rejection is only applicable to non-immigrant visa categories, such as US student visas.

  • When a consular officer remains unsatisfied due to the applicant's inability to prove reason, or strong ties with the home country, which shall cause them to leave the US, once the visa purpose is fulfilled and it expires, the consular officer can reject the visa application under this section.

  • Strong ties include job, home or family, and friends.

Rejection Basis

Inability to prove intent to return to home country on expiry of the visa

How to Resolve 214(b)

The rejection is permanent on a case-by-case basis.

The visa applicant may review the applications, and reasons and refile a new visa application with corrections. The same application cannot be reviewed again.

Section 212(a) on USA Student Visa: Reasons and Action

  • When a consular officer on reviewing a visa application discovers either insufficient finances or an absence of proper Affidavit of Support (US citizen or person sponsors or guarantees visa applicants stay and expenses), then they can reject the application under this section.

  • The lack of adequate funds shows that there is the possibility of the applicant becoming a public charge in future to the US government.

Rejection Basis

Possibility of Public Charge

How to Resolve 212(a)

The rejection can be appealed for revision.

The visa applicant needs to resolve the funds' issue, and once they can provide evidence for sufficient funds or proper Affidavit of Support (Form I-134), they may appeal for revision and the consular officer shall consider it.

A student visa application is a laborious procedure that calls for extensive supporting papers. Before you start the application process, make sure you have all of your documents organised. Contact the closest US embassy or consulate as soon as you've turned in the DS-160 form to set up your interview. 

Getting an appointment might take weeks, and any delay could jeopardise the commencement of your programme. A visa application may be rejected for a variety of reasons. The explanation will be stated in your visa refusal letter, though depending on the category it might not be very explicit. 

Given that seemingly minor points may become the causes of F1 visa rejection, one must pay attention to detail while applying for an F1 visa. Write to us at to get queries about US student visas resolved.

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What is 221g or 214B refusal?

If you or a loved one has been denied a visa to the United States under Sections 214(b) or 221(g), or through administrative procedures, you have a long path ahead. This refusal indicates that a consular official has previously determined that there is insufficient evidence to support the issue of a visa. 

Is 221g considered a visa refusal?

A visa refusal under section 221(g) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) indicates that the applicant failed to demonstrate eligibility for a visa to the satisfaction of the consular officer, as required by US law, particularly section 291 of the INA. Securing a 221(g) letter does not always indicate that a visa application has been denied, nor does it diminish your prospects of securing a visa. 

How long does 221g refusal processing take?

You should allow around 60 days from the date of the visa interview for the processing of your application if you were informed during the interview that your application was rejected as per Section 221(g) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) awaiting further processing.

What is Section 214 B of US immigration?

Application applicants are presumed to be intending immigrants under Section 214(b) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) unless they convincingly show, to the satisfaction of the consular officer, that their economic, family and social ties outside the United States are sufficiently strong to ensure that they will depart at the end of their authorised stay and that their intended activities in the United States will be consistent with the visa status.

How do I reapply after the 214B rejection?

Even after receiving a 214B, you are still able to reapply for a US visa if you believe your situation has changed and you now have further evidence that you will return from the US. The 6-month waiting period to reapply for a visa is not applicable.

What happens after a US visa refusal?

You cannot appeal a decision to deny your travel visa, but you may reapply in the future. If you decide to reapply, you will have to fill out a new Form DS-160 for a travel visa, pay the filing fee once again, and go to a fresh visa interview.

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