If you lose your passport with a valid US visa stamp, you cannot enter the US until you get a new visa.
The process to get a new visa stamp is the same as getting a visa normally but involves some additional steps:
This article will discuss:
#1 File Police Complaint
The moment you realize that your passport has been lost, you should file a police complaint immediately in the country/city that you are currently in.
If you have copies of your passport and US Visa, do carry them with you to the Police station.
In India, this complaint is usually known as FIR (First Information Report).
#2 Email US Embassy
You should also report the loss to the US embassy that issued it to you.
- It is possible that your old expired passport carried the US visa stamp, but you only lost the most current active passport (with no US visa stamp).
- If your missing passport had no US Visa stamp, there is NO need to report it to the US embassy.
For example, if you got your H1B visa stamped in the US embassy, Delhi, India, you would report it to them.
Report on US embassy email: Get specific US Embassy or consulate email address.
Mention this information clearly in the email that you send to US embassy:
Passport [STOLEN or LOST or BURNT] with USA VISA – [H1B or H4 or B1 or F1 or ANY OTHER]
Email Body content
- Your FULL NAME (First Name + Middle Name + Last Name).
- Your Date of Birth (Month-Date-Year).
- Your Place of Birth (City + Country).
- Your Address in United States (If you are/were staying in USA at time of passport loss).
- Your contact EMAIL address.
Attach these documents to your email:
- Copy of Police complaint.
- Copy of lost passport – page 1 with your photo and passport number, if available.
- Copy of US visa, if available.
#3 Apply New Passport
Once you have lost your valid passport, you should apply for a new one immediately with your country’s embassy.
Example, if you are an Indian citizen, you can apply for new passport with Indian Embassy in USA.
#4 Apply Replacement U.S. Visa
Lost or stolen U.S. visas cannot be replaced inside the United States.
For replacement of a visa, you must apply in person at a U.S. Embassy or Consulate abroad.
- Your name, date, and place of birth, nationality, address, and phone number.
- A photocopy of the lost visa, if available, or the date and place of issuance, if known.
- A photocopy of the bio-data page of your lost passport, if available. If not, the nationality and number of your lost passport as well as the issuance and expiration dates, if available.
- Written account documenting the loss of your passport and visa: When and how your passport was lost or
- Copy of the police report for the lost passport.
You will not be eligible for dropbox if your passport has been lost or stolen and it had your stamped visa.
Your US visa is canceled immediately by the US embassy on your report of stolen passport.
The US visa is canceled automatically to avoid its misuse. Your US visa becomes invalid for travel.
If you are currently inside the USA and you still have validity left on your i94, you can keep staying in the USA even though your visa has been canceled.
You need a Visa stamp only for entering the USA. Your stay within the USA is governed by your i94 validity.
You can normally apply for your visa extensions or amendments like in case of an H1B visa while staying in the USA after visa cancelation.
If your application is approved, you will get your new i94.
Unless you travel outside the USA, your situation will remain normal.
If you travel outside the USA, you will need a NEW visa stamp from the US embassy to re-enter.
You cannot use a visa in your old passport that was previously reported as stolen.
If you reported your missing passport to the US embassy, they would have already invalidated your Visa Stamp. Hence, it is no longer valid.
You will have to apply for a replacement US visa at the US embassy.
It is not possible to replace a lost US visa in the new passport in the USA. You have to travel to the US embassy/consulate outside the USA to get a new one.
But, your i-94 stays valid and you can stay in the USA till its valid.
If your passport was lost outside the USA and it had a Visa stamp, you cannot enter the USA until you get a new passport and a new US visa stamp.
I recommend buying a Travel Neck Wallet with RFID Blocking to keep your passport safe and always hanging around your neck.
Scan Passport, US Visa
I strongly recommended to always keep a scanned copy of your passport and visa. This would come handy if you lose the original copies and will help your country’s embassy and US embassy to fetch your records.
Source: travel.state.gov website