Quickly and easily move from intake to automatic data input with Docketwise's e-filing for DS-260. In just a couple of easy steps, you can have your family or employment-based DS-260 application ready to be filed!
How does it work?
In Docketwise, you can take advantage of our Smart Forms to electronically file the DS-260, making it more efficient than ever.
Once the information has been entered into Docketwise, a new DS-260 Application will be created on the CEAC website with all of the information provided with just a couple of clicks!
The DS-260 E-Filing feature is only available on Pro and Advanced subscription plans.
Related processing fees must be paid and the status in CEAC updated to 'PAID' before you e-file the related DS-260.
E-Filing and completing the DS-260 is made easy in Docketwise by using our step-by-step e-Filing process. If you wish to learn more about each step in the e-Filing process with Docketwise you will find more information below.
Step 0: Create Forms and Complete Questionnaire
Creating the e-File Smart Forms
To get started, you will need to choose the DS-260 specifically for e-filing (this is different from our manual DS-260), which can be found under the E-file Smart Forms section in the Add Forms list.
Once you have selected the e-filing form that you will be preparing, you will need to assign the form and form roles. Once that is completed, you can click the Save & Proceed button to finish creating the forms.
Completing the Smart Form Questionnaire
After you have created the forms, you can add information directly to the questionnaire and also invite the parties involved to complete the electronic questionnaire to gather all of the necessary information.
Note: The CEAC Platform doesn't have comprehensive validations for the mandatory fields required to complete your application.
Step 1: DS-260 E-Filing Start
In this first step, you will need to click the e-File this form on ceac.state.gov button to get started. After you click this button, Docketwise automatically validates whether or not the questionnaire is filled out correctly so it can be synced over to the CEAC platform.
Note: Please note that related processing fees must be paid and the status in CEAC updated to 'PAID' before you e-file the related DS-260.
If the Initial Validation Passes
If the initial validation passes, you can start e-filing the form by following the actions shown in Step 3: DS-260 E-filing Status. There, you will start by entering the Case Number, Invoice ID, and who is filing the application.
If the Initial Validation Fails
If the initial validation fails, you will receive an error message, showing you a list of errors that need to be fixed in order to e-file the form. See Step 2: Principal Form Validation for more information.
Step 2: DS-260 Validation
Addressing Validation Issues
In this second step, you will need to fix any validation errors that are presented in the e-File tab of the smart form. All of the errors are summarized in the e-File tab and you can navigate directly to each question using the associated link, as shown below:
Each question that needs to be addressed will also be highlighted and include an explanation of the error related to the questionnaire's response.
Once you have addressed the validation errors presented in the e-File tab, have Docketwise re-validate whether or not the questionnaire is filled out correctly by clicking the Re-Validate button.
If the Validation Passes
If the validation passes, you will see a success message letting you know that your form is ready to be e-filed and you can proceed to e-filing the form by following the actions shown in Step 3: DS-260 E-filing Status.
If the Validation Fails
If the validation fails, you will have to need to address any outstanding validation error shown in the e-File tab. See Addressing Validation Errors for more information.
Step 3: DS-260 E-Filing Status
E-Filing the DS-260
Once your form no longer has any validation errors, you can click the e-File this form on ceac.state.gov button e-file the form.
Entering Information to Sync to the CEAC platform
In order to sync the e-filing to the CEAC platform, you will need to provide the Case Number, Invoice ID, and who is filing the application.
After you have entered all of the necessary information into the modal and clicked the Submit button to start syncing your e-filing, you will receive a prompt letting you know that your form is successfully queued to be e-filed.
Whether the form was able to be successfully e-filed or it was unable to be successfully e-filed, you will also receive an in-app bell icon notification informing you of the result. You can click these notifications to directly access the associated form.
If the e-Filing was Successful
If the e-Filing was successful, you will receive a prompt and an in-app notification that the syncing of the information was successfully completed. What this means is that the information entered into the Docketwise smart form will be automatically added to the online application.
Note: The electronic filing in Docketwise will not submit the form on your behalf and this must be done manually after the information is added from Docketwise.
If the e-Filing was Unsuccessful
If the e-Filing was unsuccessful, you will receive a prompt and an in-app notification that the e-filing was unsuccessful. You can also view a screenshot taken at the time of the error during the e-filing attempt.
If your e-filing was unsuccessful please make sure the info entered for Case Number and Invoice ID are correct. Once you have verified that the information is correct, you can click the e-File this form on ceac.state.gov button to re-attempt your e-filing.