Interviews are scheduled in month batches based on case numbers becoming current according to the visa bulletin. However, regardless of the case number being current or not, no case can be scheduled for interview if the DS260 is not processed.
Initial DS260 processing in DV2015 took around 3 months (May submissions) and as the volume increased (June & July submissions) the processing time increased (more waiting time). So – we saw delays of up to 4 or 5 months in DV2015. By the spring of 2015, that 4 or 5 month delay started to reduce – presumably as the volume of submissions decreased.
DV2016 seems to have started the same way as DV2015 – with most October interviews going to people who submitted in May. Not all cases take the same time to process, so there may be two low case number cases submitted on May 30th for example, one got in to October, one didn’t.
Now – if people need to unlock and make changes to their DS260, some changes are going to cause a delay, some won’t. The differences are pretty much common sense – but let me give some examples:-
- Adding a spouse due to marriage – probably WILL take some reprocessing for background checks on the spouse.
- Adding a newborn child – probably WON’T take some reprocessing since newborn children could not have got into trouble yet!
- Changing the address you plan to move to in the USA – probably WON’T take some reprocessing since you have no history at the US address anyway.
- Adding an address in a country that was not previously listed on your form – probably WILL take some reprocessing for background checks on you in that new country (especially true if that country is some country such as Iran where background checks are not easy).
See what I mean – pretty much common sense – right?
Now – will the reprocessing delay your case? Well if your case is not going to be current for 4 months from now anyway, then there is more than enough time for the changes (even impactful changes) to be processed. So – in that case there will be no delay at all. The reprocessing is done during a period that was a waiting period for you anyway.
If on the other hand you are about to be current and need to add a spouse, that could well cause a delay. However, as I always say, a delay for an accurate DS260 is much better than a denial for an inaccurate DS260.