Update Regarding New PIMS System
PIMS (Petition Information Management Service) is a new system through
which Consular posts are able to access the details of approved nonimmigrant
visa petitions (e.g. Hs, Ls, Os, Ps, Qs). After approval, I-129 petitions
requesting consular notification are sent to the KCC (Kentucky Consular
Center), where they enter and scan key data and documents, such as the
I-129 form, the letter of support from the employer, and identification
documents into PIMS. Some database checks are also performed by the KCC
in order to find instances where there may be fraud, violations, etc.
These findings are then recorded in PIMS. When a post is ready to grant
a visa based on a petition, it must confirm the petition in PIMS before
doing so. If, for any reason, a petition is not sent to the KCC, it will
not show up in PIMS. If this was to happen and a post is unable to find
a petition in PIMS, the post must email the KCC. The KCC has direct access
to the USCIS’s CLAIM3 system where the USCIS records petition approvals.
The posts do not have access to this system. Until the petition is in
PIMS, the post cannot grant the visa. Although the Department of State
claims that KCC responds to posts within 48 hours and usually within hours,
there are a few reports of longer waits for PIMS confirmation, which should
be taken into account when applying for a visa.
A beneficial outcome of PIMS is that the post should not require an original
approval notice if it is not available because it can and must be confirmed
in PIMS anyway. There are instances where the posts use scheduling contractors
who have been instructed to ask for an approved petition before setting
up an interview, but this problem will soon be addressed. The PIMS system
is funded with the proceeds of the H and L fraud fee.