EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT THE “B” VISA

EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT THE “B” VISA

A visa is a stamp in a person’s passport that allows him or her to travel to the United States for a specific purpose.  The only way to enter the United State legally is either as an immigrant or a non-immigrant with a visa.  There are two types of “B” visas: B-1 and B-2.  A B-1 visa  allows persons to come temporarily to the United States for business purposes.  A B-2 allows travel to the United States for non-business purposes such as visiting relatives or engaging in tourism activities.  The B visa is one of the most common types of visas a person can receive.  Here is everything you need to know about the “B” Visas. In fact, millions of visitors travel to the United States each year on B-1/B-2 visas.  A key point about B visas is that they only allow a person to remain temporarily in the United States.

WHAT ARE THE ELIGIBILITY REQUIREMENTS FOR THE B VISA?

 

In order to receive a B visa, you must meet the following requirements:

 

  1. The purpose of your trip is either business or leisure related

 

  1. You only plan to remain in the United States for a short period of time

 

  1. You have a residence in another country that you plan to return to after your trip to the United States (i.e., no intent to abandon your permanent home)

 

  1. You have sufficient money to cover your trip to the United States and will not need government assistance during your time here; and

 

  1. You are not otherwise inadmissible for entry to the United States (e.g., you don’t have a serious criminal record)

 

"B" VISA most commonly used to travel to the US.

“B” VISA most commonly used to travel to the US.

WHAT’S ALLOWED UNDER A B-1 VISA?

Under a B-1 visa, a person can travel to the United States to participate in activities of a professional or commercial nature such as the following:

  • Consulting with business associates
  • Negotiating contracts
  • Attending business meetings/conventions
  • Settling an estate
  • Participating in short-term training
  • Seek out investment opportunities
  • Interview and hire staff
  • Conduct short term activities as a minister of religion
  • Participate in an athletic tournament
  • Engage in artistic endeavors

 

This is a just a small list of activities.  The key to this type of visa is that the purpose of coming to the United States is professional or commercial in nature and is only for a short term.

 

WHAT’S ALLOWED UNDER A B-2 VISA?

Under a B-2 visa, a person can travel to the United States for personal or tourist related reasons such as the following:

  • Visiting family or friends
  • Touring the United States
  • Attending a conference of a non-business nature
  • Obtaining medical care that the visa holder will pay for
  • Participating in short-term training
  • Seek out investment opportunities
  • Attend a wedding, including coming here to get married and then returning home

 

ARE THERE RESTRICTIONS ON THE B VISA?

shutterstock_645768778-300x200Yes.  A B visa holder cannot work or study in the United States.  Additionally, the visa holder cannot remain in the United States for more than 6-months.  If a person overstays the 6-month period, there can be serious consequences for doing so, such as facing a ban from traveling to the United States for several years.

There is the possibility of extending the 6-month period by seeking an extension.  This is not always possible and will depend on certain factors.  If you’re in the United States and coming upon the expiration of your B visa status, it’s very important to consult with a good immigration attorney in order to understand your options.  Decisions you make today can seriously affect your immigration status in the future.

HOW CAN I APPLY FOR THE B VISA?

Applications for the B visa are handled by the United States Department of State through each American Embassy located overseas.  The application process is fairly easy and straightforward.  After paying a small fee, you’ll be required to appear for an interview at the Embassy and, if successful, you will receive a visa stamp in your passport allowing you entry into the United States.  The time for an interview can vary depending upon the country from which you’re applying for a visa.

 

CONTACT US TODAY FOR HELP

The immigration laws are complex.  One wrong move or bad decision can have life altering consequences.  Call us today or get in touch with us through this website and let us help you.  At The BIL Team is a premier immigration law firm with over 50 combined years of legal experience ready to help you deal with any immigration issue.  The BIL Team practices immigration law throughout the United States and its territories, with specific offices in Las Vegas, Phoenix and Los Angeles.

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