B-1, B-2 Visa for Visitors for Business and Pleasure
Business Visitor Visa (B-1)
Foreign Business persons planning to visit U.S. to engage in consultations with U.S. business associates, or attend professional conferences or conventions, or solicit sales and negotiate a contract, then B-1 Visa (Business visitor visa) is an appropriate visa to travel to U.S.
B-1 visa is also available to personal or domestic employees accompanying a U.S. citizen employer having permanent home or is stationed in a foreign country, or a foreign citizen employer in U.S. in non-immigrant visa status like E, H, L, M, P visa status.
Contact us for representation before a US Consulate to obtain a visitor’s visa. Often times, US Consul Officers may deny a visa because the supporting documentation did not clearly establish that the applicant is qualified. Overcoming a denial may be a difficult task hence it may be in the applicant’s best interest to be represented by experienced immigration attorney who can submit the best possible application and supporting documentation. Contact us for a fee initial consultation.
Pleasure or Medical Treatment – Visitor visas (B-2)
Foreign Nationals who wish to enter the U.S. for recreation and pleasure, visit friends and relatives or medical treatment, then B-2 visa (also called tourist visa) would be appropriate category of visa for travel to U.S. A B-2 visa may also be used for a short course of study which is recreational and not for credit towards a degree and the course being less than 18 hours per week. So, a visitor on vacation in U.S. may attend a two-day cooking class for enjoyment and fun.
Persons planning to visit U.S. for a purpose other than pleasure such as students, temporary workers, crewmen, journalists, etc., must apply for appropriate visa specific to their visit and they cannot travel U.S. using a visitor visa.
Visa Waiver Program
Persons coming to U.S. for tourism or business for 90 days or less from qualified countries may be eligible to visit to U.S. without a visa, if they meet the visa waiver program requirements. Currently, 35 countries participate in the visa waiver program. Contact us as soon as possible if you believe that your entry in the US under the Visa Waiver Program may be questioned at the port of entry. In some cases we can provide you with documentation which shows that you are in compliance with the immigration regulations. We advise you to always be truthful at the port of entry otherwise your entry may become extremely complicated and your chances of returning back to the U.S. in the future may be significantly compromised. Contact us for a consultation.
Requirements for a Visitor Visa
To be eligible for a visitor visa, a Foreign National must fulfill the following requirements:
- Entering the U.S. for business, pleasure, or medical treatment;
- Must have a permanent residence in home country and have no intention of abandoning it;
- Must be able to show binding ties with the home country like property, family, and a job;
- Must evidence sufficient financial resources to fund the trip including all travel, accommodation, and living expenses during the stay in the U.S.
Applying for a visitor Visa
Applicants for a visitor visa should apply to the U.S. Embassy or Consulate nearest to their place of residence. If a person applies for a visitor visa at any U.S. Consular Office outside the country of residence, then it will be difficult to qualify for visa. It is very important to apply for the visa well in advance since visa applications are now subject to greater degree of review. As part of the visa application process, an interview at the Embassy consular section is required for visa applicants for age 14 through 79, with few exceptions. Making visa appointment is the first step in the process, as waiting time for an interview varies, applicants are advised to seek representation by an experienced immigration lawyer to increase your chances of receiving approval by assuring that the best possible application is submitted on your behalf.
Duration and extension of Stay
B1 visitor for business may be admitted for not more than one year and may be granted extensions of temporary stay in increments of not more than six months each. Failure to depart the U.S. will cause the visitor to be out of status. It is important to depart the U.S. before the last day the visitor is authorized to be in U.S. This is based on the end date on Arrival-Departure Record, Form I-94. Under the provisions of the Immigration Law, if a visitor overstay beyond the authorized stay in U.S., the visa will be automatically voided.
If you have questions about an immigration matter, and/or you need help in the process, please contact our immigration attorneys or call The Law Firm of Shihab & Associates Co., LPA at the nearest office close to you to speak with an attorney. We handle various matters including family immigration, immigrant visas, non-immigrant visas, employment visas and H1B visas, Investor Visas, PERM applications, Green Cards and Permanent Residence, and many more. Please contact us and experience how our firm can effectively achieve your objectives.