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B Visas - Visitors for Pleasure or Business & Visa Waiver Program

helps people visit the United States.


With some exceptions, foreign nationals wishing to visit the United States for business or pleasure must first obtain a B-1 (business) or B-2 (pleasure) visa from a U.S. consulate. 


An exception to the B-1/B-2 visa is the Visa Waiver Program, available to  citizens of certain countries.  A list of the current accepted countries can be found here.  The Visa Waiver Program allows non-citizens to enter the country for brief periods of time (up to 90 days) without obtaining a visa.  Non-citizens, who are citizens of the qualifying countries, may still wish to obtain a B visa at a consulate rather than entering through the Visa Waiver Program.  For example, if you wish to stay in the U.S. for a longer period than 90 days, you would obtain a B visa.  Also, non-citizens who enter the U.S. on the Visa Waiver PRogram cannot change status  (for example, to a student) or extend their stay while in the U.S.   Furthermore, a non-citizen who enters on the Visa Waiver Program gives up his or her right to go before an immigration judge, should he or she be subject to removal. 


B-1 and B-2 visas are valid for short periods of time, not generally exceeding 1 year.  You must maintain a foreign residence and demonstrate an intent to depart the U.S. within the terms of the stay.  You must also establish that you have the financial means to support yourself throughout the stay in the U.S. without resorting to employment within the U.S.

B-1/B-2 visa holders generally cannot change their status while in the United States and must leave the United States at or before the expiration of their visa, but there are exceptions to this rule.

Extensions of a B1 or B2 visa can be obtained for periods of up to 6 months. 

Travel for Business

Many people wish to travel to the United States for business reasons.  Maybe you want to come to the U.S. for a short period of time to investigate potential business opportunities.  Maybe your employer is sending you to the U.S. on a business assignment.  There are strict requirements on when a B-1 visa is appropriate and will be approved. 

B-1 visas (Travel for business) are appropriate for people traveling to the United States on business.  B-1 visas are generally issued for the duration of the business activity only, and generally do not exceed 1 year.  The services performed while in the U.S. should not be services that would displace a U.S. worker.  The principal place of business and pay should come from abroad.

Travel for Pleasure

Many people travel the United States for pleasure each year.  whether they are coming to go to Disney World, or coming to visit family, a B-2 visa may be the appropriate visa for them. 

B-2 visas are appropriate for tourists or those individuals traveling to the U.S. for pleasure.  B-2 visas are generally valid for 6 months. 

We can help you obtain a B-1/B-2 visa.  If you would like to set up a consultation about the B-1/B-2 visa or would like to obtain an extension on a current B-1/B-2 visa, please call us:
Shorstein, Lasnetski & Gihon


407-228-2019 (Orlando). 

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