Are immigrant visa applications with the State Department filed in paper form or electronically?

On September 3, 2013, the United States Department of State transitioned to an online format for immigrant visa applications.  As part of the transition, paper-based Form DS-230 has been replaced with Form DS-260, Immigrant Visa Electronic Application (available online at ceac.state.gov).  Most individuals applying for an immigrant visa will now fill out Form DS-260.  Only Diversity Visa and Cuban Family Reunification Parole applicants will continue to use Form DS-230.

This change does not affect most applications submitted prior to September 1, 2013.  However, the National Visa Center may in some cases ask individuals who applied before that date to submit Form DS-260.  Generally, if an applicant is still submitting documentation, or if a checklist letter has been sent to the applicant, the National Visa Center will request that Form DS-260 be submitted.  Alternatively, if the application and supporting documentation has been accepted, the applicant will not be asked to submit Form DS-260.  An applicant who applied before September 1 does not need to submit Form DS-260 unless it has been specifically requested.