B-1 and B-2 visas, also known as “visitor visas,” are nonimmigrant visas for persons who wish to temporarily enter the United States for business, tourism/pleasure, or a combination of both purposes. The process to obtain visitor visas is relatively simple, but visitors must comply with the regulations in order to ensure that their stay in the United States is legal and complication-free.
Who Can Obtain a Visitor Visa?
B1: Available to foreign workers participating in business activities of a commercial or professional nature in the US, including consulting, traveling for a convention/conference, settling an estate, negotiating a contract, or participating in short-term training.
B2: Available to visitors interested in recreational or personal travel. Reasons for a personal visit may include tourism, visiting family and friends, medical treatment, social or service activities, and amateur participants in sporting or entertainment events.
How Long Can I Stay?
B1 and B2: Visitors may stay in the US for 6 months, with an opportunity to extend their visit for another 6 months (1 year total).
How Many Visitor Visas Are Available?
There is no limit to the amount of visitor visas available.
When Is the Deadline?
There is no deadline to obtain a visitor visa; they are issued based on the dates of your visit.
What Are the Requirements?
B1: The purpose of your trip must be to enter the US for a legitimate business purpose, for a specific and limited period of time. You must have adequate funds to cover the expenses of the trip and your stay in the US, and you must have a permanent residence outside the US with no intention of abandoning that residence. It is important to note that you may not earn income during your visit to the United States while on this visa. If your intent is to do business in which you will earn an income in the United States, you will need to apply for a visa that includes work authorization.
B2: The purpose of your trip must be to enter the US for a personal/recreational purpose, and your visit must be for a specific and limited period of time. You must have adequate funds to cover the expenses of the trip and your stay in the US, and you must have a permanent residence outside the US with no intention of abandoning that residence. Like the B-1 visa, you also may not earn income during your visit to the United States.
To learn more about the process of obtaining a visitor visa, click here.
Questions about Visiting the US for Business or Pleasure?
To find out if you qualify for a visitor visa, and learn how to prepare an application, schedule a complimentary 15-minute consultation with The Grady Firm’s attorneys; call +1 (323) 450-9010; or fill out a Contact Request Form.
The Grady Firm has offices in Los Angeles and San Diego, California, and its attorneys work remotely with clients from around the globe. We also specialize in helping foreign entrepreneurs establish viable businesses in the United States. Se habla español.
*This article is for informational purposes only, and does not constitute legal advice or create an attorney-client relationship. This article does not make any guarantees as to the outcome of a particular case, as each case has its own set of circumstances and must be evaluated individually by licensed attorney.