Also frequently called temporary visas, a non-immigrant visa allows an individual to travel to a U.S. port of entry (typically a border or airport) and ask for permission from the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to enter for a specific purpose. The specific purpose could be almost anything. An applicant for any temporary visa should maintain a foreign residence that she or he does not plan to abandon.
The exact length of time a person can stay on a non immigrant visa depends on the status he or she enters under. A person admitted under one status can frequently change or extend his or her status.
The process for obtaining a non immigrant visa process varies greatly depending on the type of visa. This process is complicated and can confuse even rocket scientists. This article presents an overview of the process, but I do not recommend proceeding without at least consulting with an attorney as an improperly completed application, or one that does not provide the correct supporting evidence can result in a denial for a person that should be allowed to enter.
There are manytop immigration lawyers that can help you best present a visa application to maximize your chance of approval.
An immigration lawyer can help determine the right category, obtain your visa and/or extending a visa that's about to expire assist you to change status to some new category, and acquire legal status and work authorization for the immediate members of the family (if they are eligible).
The following is a brief description of the very commonly desired non immigrant visa categories.
B-2: visitor visa
The B-2 visitor visa is easily the most common visa. A B-2 visa doesn't grant an individual the right to work in the United States. Applicants for any B-2 visa must demonstrate that:
B-1: temporary visitor for business
The B-1 visa is comparable to the B-2 visa, but it's intended for a visitor conducting business in the usa.It does not allow an individual to work in the US. Specific activities associated with a foreign or U.S business are okay.
E visas: Treaty Traders and Investors
This category is actually two subcategories, the E-1 (a treaty trader visa) and also the E-2 (a treaty investor visa). If your treaty of friendship, commerce, and navigation exists between your United States along with a foreign country, the citizens of the foreign country might be eligible for an E visa. Their email list of countries is reproduced here. E visas grant special benefits unavailable to many other non-immigrant visa categories.
E visa holders:
E-2 Treaty Investor
The E-2 can be obtained by nationals from the treaty country who engage in investment in the US. The investor must have invested or is actively along the way of investing a lot of capital inside a real and operating commercial enterprise. The investor must also be capable to "develop and direct" the enterprise.
Employees may also receive an E-2 visa as long as they have the same home country as the employer and also the job duties must entail special qualifications necessary to the business.
L-1: Intra-company Transfers
The L-1 visa allows foreign companies to temporarily transfer executives and managers ("L-1A") and technical personnel having "specialized knowledge" ("L-1B") to affiliates or subsidiaries in the US. Executives and managers eligible for a L-1A status may also be eligible for a permanent residence through the employment-based first preference immigrant category.
The alien must establish that she or he has worked within an executive, managerial or specialized knowledge capacity abroad and can work in an identical capacity in the US
H-1 B: Professionals in Specialty Occupations
H1-B visas are issued to workers having a job offer for any specialty occupation. A specialty occupation requires a minimum of a bachelor's degree or equivalent type of specialty training for the job. Currently only 65,000 H1-B visas are available each year, with an additional 20,000 available for graduates with a U.S. Master's or doctorate.
TN visas: Canadian and Mexican Professionals under NAFTA
Canadian and Mexican citizens who are employed in specific professions may enter the United States under TN status, to work for a U.S. company temporarily. Eligible professionals could also work for Canadian or Mexican companies in the U.S.
The intended activity should be in a profession included by Appendix 1603.D.1 of NAFTA.
K visas: Fiancs and Spouses of U.S. Citizens
O visas: Foreigners of Extraordinary ability and accompanying workers O-1 status can be obtained to aliens of extraordinary ability within the arts, sciences, education, business and athletics. This category is most often sought after by people with extraordinary talents within the arts who are not included underneath the L-1, H-1B, or P-1 categories. The meaning of extraordinary depends upon the field of the alien's endeavor. To have an artist, she must have obtained a higher level of achievement evidenced with a degree of skill and recognition substantially above that ordinarily encountered. O-2 status can be obtained by aliens seeking entry to accompany an O-1 alien employed in the field of arts or athletics and whose essential skills are integral towards the performance. O-3 status can be obtained by dependents of O-1 or O-2 aliens. P visas: Internationally Recognized Athletes and Entertainment Groups P-1:Athletes: A sports athlete must be internationally recognized either individually or like a member of a team that's been internationally recognized.The athlete should have a tendered contract having a major Usa sports league or team. Possible exceptions exists for individual sports for example golf or tennis where contracts don't typically exist. Entertainers: To qualify an entertainer must perform like a member of an entertainment group (2 or even more people). A person entertainer must seek admission underneath the O-1 category. The group should have been nationally or internationally named outstanding within the disciple for a sustained time period. P-2: Granted for artists and entertainers (alone or having a group) seeking to enter america to perform within reciprocal exchange program. P-3: Culturally Unique Artists and Entertainers.The word "culturally unique" is defined as "a type of artistic expression, methodology, or medium that is unique to particular country, nation, society, class, ethnicity, religion, tribe, or other number of persons." P-4: Readily available for dependent spouses and youngsters of a P-1, P-2, or P-3 alien
J-1: Exchange VisitorsA student, scholar, trainee, teacher, professor, research assistant, specialist or leader inside a field of specialized knowledge or skill, who's coming temporarily towards the United States to take part in a program designated through the Department of State. The purpose must be to teach, instruct or lecture, study, observe, conduct research, consult, demonstrate special skills, or receive training. If an individual is coming to america to receive graduate medical training she must also satisfy212(j) from the Immigration and Nationality Act. J-2: The spouse and minor kids of a J-1 may accompany or follow to become listed on under J-2 status. J-2 dependents may make an application for work authorization to dedicate yourself any employer. Students
F-1: The alien should have a residence inside a foreign country which she or he has no aim of abandoning. A professional student must seek to go in the United States temporarily and solely with regards to pursuing this type of course of study at a college, university, seminary, conservatory, academic senior high school, elementary school, or other academic institution or perhaps in a language training course in the United States. F-2 visas are for the spouse and minor kids of the principal applicant when the F-1 is approved.
Similar to an F-1 but the alien must have the intention to go in the United States temporarily and solely with regards to pursuing a complete course of study in a vocational or other recognized nonacademic institution. M-2 visas for the spouse and minor kids of the principal applicant when the M-1 is approved.
R-1: Religious Workers
The alien should have been an associate of the same religious denomination as the employer for the proceeding 24 months.The religious denomination should be a genuine non profit religious organization in the usa.The purpose for entering should be:
H-2: Temporary Seasonal WorkersH-2A temporary agricultural workers H-2B Nonagricultural workers Requires a recruitment process to demonstrate that the foreigner will not displace a U.S. worker willing and able to do the job.