Police Certificates
Police certificates are required for each visa applicant aged 16 years or older. Present and former residents of the United States should NOT obtain any police certificates covering their residence in the U.S.

Please note that these police certificates are required only if you are getting an immigrant visa or other nonimmigrant visa such as K, V. They are NOT required if you are doing an Adjustment of Status (I-485) within the U.S.

Police certificates must cover the entire period of the applicant's residence in a given area. The term "police certificate" means a certification by appropriate police authorities stating what their records show concerning each applicant, including all arrests, the reasons for the arrests, and the disposition of each case of which there is a record. Police certificates from certain countries are considered unobtainable.

In some cases, there may be specific Police Certificate Request forms that must be submitted in order to properly request and obtain the applicable Police Certificate(s) based on the applicant's residence history.

The table below shows how many police certificates are required based on where each applicant lives and has lived previously.

IF the applicant is living in their country of nationality at their current residence for more than 6 months
AND is 16 years old or older
THEN the applicant needs a police certificate from the police authorities of that locality.

IF the applicant lived in a different part of their country of nationality for more than 6 months
AND was 16 years or older at that time
THEN the applicant needs a police certificate from the police authorities of that locality.

IF the applicant lived in a different country for more than 12 months
AND was 16 years or older at that time
THEN the applicant needs a police certificate from the police authorities of that locality.

IF the applicant was arrested for any reason, regardless of how long they lived there
AND was any age at that time
THEN the applicant needs a police certificate from the police authorities of that locality.

Please look at the Reciprocity by Country to see the country specific police certificate availabilitiy.

India


Please refer to the chart below to find out where to get the police clearance certificate(s) from:
Citizenship and residency
Need police certificate(s) from
You reside in India and your Indian passport was issued within past six months
1. The passport office that issued your passport.
You reside in India and your Indian passport was issued more than six months prior to visa application
1. The passport office that issued your passport.

2. The district police office serving the applicant's place of residence
Your reside in India and your Indian passport was issued within the past six months. You lived in another country for at least 12 months after the age of 16.
1. The passport office that issued your passport.

2. If obtainable, for all countries other than India where you have lived for over one year after turning 16.
Your reside in India and your Indian passport was issued more than six months prior to visa application. You lived in another country (except the U.S.) for at least 12 months after the age of 16.
1. The passport office that issued your passport.

2. The district police office serving the applicant's place of residence

3. If obtainable, for all countries other than India where you have lived for over one year after turning 16.
You are an Indian passport holder and you reside outside of India.
1. The local Indian embassy or consulate confirming that you have no criminal record.

2. If obtainable, for all countries other than India where you have lived for over one year after turning 16.
You are NOT a citizen of India, but reside in India.
1. The passport office that issued your passport.

2. If obtainable, for all countries other than India where you have lived for over one year after turning 16.
You are NOT a citizen of India and applying outside India


Police certificates need to be obtained for only during the time period when the applicant was 16 years or older. However, if the person was arrested for any reason, regardless of how long they lived there, and was any age at that time, the police clearance certificate from the police authorites of that locality is required.

Police certificates from the local passport office are considered usually more dependable than those obtained at a local level and indicate that the person had no serious criminal convictions on the record at the time of passport issuance. Each applicant will need to bring the interview letter provided by the National Visa Center in order to request the Passport Office Police Certificate from the Passport Office.

Local Passport Offices

If your passport was issued after 1997, the regional passport office will issue Police Clearance Certificate (PCC) in 1 day as they did computerization after that and have the data. If the passport was issued before 1997, it will take anywhere from 10 to 30 days.

To apply at Regional Passport Office , please use this form.
Regional Passport Office web sites for Bangalore   Chennai   Hyderabad   Mumbai  

Police Certificate for India while in USA
If you are currently not staying in India, but in the United States, you do not need to get the police certificate from local police station nor regional passport office in India. In that case, you can get a police clearance from your local Indian consulate (Indian consulates worldwide). They do it on the basis of a passport check.

This is a document issued by the embassy/consulate certifying that you have never been involved with the Indian police. The normal procedure for issuing a PCC is that the embassy/consulate checks with the police authorities in the area(s) in India where you had been residing, and issues the PCC after obtaining their clearance. As this procedure generally takes some time, an alternative is for you to directly approach the relevant police authorities in India (or request your friends/relatives to do so on your behalf) and obtain a certificate from them that you have not been involved in any police case during the period of your stay in India (please ensure that the relevant dates (stayed in India from so-and-so date to so-and-so date) are included in the certificate).

The Embassy of India, does not accept consular service applications through U.S. Postal Mail. It is suggested that applicants may apply for the services either at the Embassy Counter or send the application through a courier. This arrangement will continue until the situation improves.

The following return mail charges should be sent for return of serviced passports in addition to the prescribed visa fee. The Embassy/Consulate is not responsible for documents lost in the mail. Express Mail: $20, Registered Mail: $10, Priority Mail: $7, Certified Mail: $5 For each additional passport a charge of $ 1/- would be levied as mailing charges. Applicants can also send a self addressed prepaid return envelope with the application in lieu of mailing charges.

To apply for a police clearance certificate, you should fill the Miscellaneous Service Form (taken from Indian Embassy in Washington DC, but will work in another consulates too). You also need to take/send your passport and passport size photograph (affixed in the form) for this. It is advisable to apply in person. When you apply in person, also carry a photocopy of the passport and submit that photocopy to the consulate. Also take a copy of your H1/H4 visa approval notice. The fee for police Clearance Certificate is $11. The fee should be paid by Money Order/ Cashier checks made in favor of the Embassy of India/Consulate General of India. Cash is accepted only at the counter. Personal checks are not accepted. Additionally, you should pay $22 for telex charges if you would like to get the PCC on expedited basis.
PCC includes a stamp in the passport and PCC document saying that 'that they do not have any adverse findings against you that might affect your U.S. visa'.

Canada
Information about police certificates from Canada can be found here.

They are also called RCMP certificates as police certificates from Canada are obtained from RCMP (Royal Canadian Mounted Police). Police certificates are required for consular processing for those currently living in Canada for 6 months or longer or for those not currently living in Canada, but who did live in Canada for more than 1 year.

If you look up the blue pages (government offices) of your phone book, you will see RCMP phone # under "Canada" section. In Toronto the number is 416-363-9072

There are two types of police certificates, one is name check based and other is fingerprint based. Only name check based police certificates are required for U.S. immigration. Fingerprint based police certificates are for Canadian immigration.

Other than a valid reason they do not generally do it, just like that. So you have to tell them you need to do it for "U.S. Immigration".

The police station issuing the clearance will red stamp an approval and on the bottom of the form you will see a note; "details cannot be confirmed as relating to the subject of inquiry without fingerprint comparison". Do not be alarmed by this because fingerprints are NOT required. If, during your consulate interview the consular officer finds your police clearance has a "hit" or name check problem you may be instructed to be fingerprinted. In this case the U.S. consular post will furnish Form FD-258 to be used for fingerprinting. This is the only form they will authorize for fingerprinting. Not any RCMP fingerprint form. Anyone who has initiated on their own to secure RCMP fingerprints is wasting their time. The consular officer has to witness the issuance of finger printing for authenticity. The RCMP fingerprint form is used for Canadian immigration or criminal processing.

Other Countries

Details for each country

  • Singapore

  • Hong Kong

  • United Kingdom
    It takes less than 4 weeks to get the police certificate from UK.

  • Germany
    Please note that PCC information is not available from the above site. One has to call the German Embassy/Consulate and request for the appropriate forms and instructions, which will then be sent by mail to the requestor's address. The concept of checks doesn't exist or at least not used extensively in Germany. So payment has to be made by a direct bank transfer (details given in the instructions) or via an international money order in Euros.

  • Australia
    Address: Public Enquiry Service
    Victoria Police
    P.O. Box 415
    Melbourne VIC 3005
    Australia
    Phone:(61 3) 9247 5907