Can an undocumented immigrant apply for a visa?

If an undocumented immigrant (17y.o)in the US were to apply for a student visa how would this work? Would they be turned away? For some Background - I was brought at a very young age. I will struggle greatly if I stay here and don’t have as fair of a chance for work and studying. I want to study in Japan with the intent of naturalizing and working there after studying. If I were to leave I would be barred from returning and would be sent to a country which I know nothing of like language. Guatemalan btw Question - Can I apply for the visa in the US even though I don’t have valid residence? If not, would I be able to mail my documents to a family member in my home country so that they can turn in my documents to the embassy?

Asked by: Justen, 2 years ago


This question is a bit out of our scope. As far as I know you will need to be a resident or have proof of a long-term visa if you apply for a visa to Japan in a country that is not your home country. So this will probably rule out applying from the US.

To apply at the Japanese Embassy in your home country, you will need to have a permanent address there which would also be a problem. So your best hope might be to go to Japan on visa waiver (if you have a passport from a country like Guatemala who is on the visa waiver list) and change to a student visa in Japan if your school is willing to help you with this. However, in the US departure airport, you are likely to run into trouble with TSA/CBP if you can't show proof of legal status in the US and be deported and possibly fined. Read more about Leaving the USA After An Illegal Entry.

In order to get a student visa to Japan you must also have a passport, enough money to pay for your tuition fees, and living costs, and get a CoE that shows that you are accepted to a school in Japan. Read more in our article student visa to Japan.

Please note that it is not so easy to stay and naturalize in Japan. You will need to stay there legally for many years first and be able to fund your tuition fees and living costs during this time.

Answered by: Johan at DreamStudies, 2022-01-11 22:52:31 This is an accepted answer.

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