Biometric Data Collection
Visa Information System (VIS) is now being progressively deployed in all EU Schengen States' consulates and embassies worldwide (*). The VIS is aimed at simplifying the visa application process and border control procedures as well as fighting the counterfeit of documents and theft of identity.
Under the VIS, mandatory fingerprinting is introduced for all passport categories. Consequently, the VAC will collect the biometric data of all visa applicants, irrespective of nationality.
(*)Austria, Belgium, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Italy, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland.
For information on Visa Information System (VIS) please click here.
The following categories of applicants are exempt from the requirement to provide fingerprints (Article 13(7) of the Visa Code):
- children under the age of 12;
- persons for whom fingerprinting is physically impossible. If the fingerprinting of fewer than 10 fingers is possible, the maximum number of fingerprints shall be taken. However, should the impossibility be temporary, the applicant shall be required to give the fingerprints at the following application. The authorities competent in accordance with Article 4(1), (2) and (3) shall be entitled to ask for further clarification of the grounds for the temporary impossibility. Member States shall ensure that appropriate procedures guaranteeing the dignity of the applicant are in place in the event of there being difficulties in enrolling;
- Heads of State or Government and members of a National Government with accompanying spouses, and the members of their official delegation, when they are invited by Member States’ governments or by international organizations for an official purpose;
- sovereigns and other senior members of a Royal Family, when they are invited by Member States’ governments or by international organizations for an official purpose.
Biometrics will be collected using a quick, discreet and non-intrusive process that captures a 10-digit fingerprint scan with a digital finger scanner.
You should ensure that their fingertips are free from any forms of decoration (henna, for example), abrasions or other markings prior to providing their biometric data as these may affect their ability to provide acceptable finger-scans.
Applicants who are physically unable to provide a fingerprint scan, will have to provide a medical certificate to support their claim.