Many foreign nationals enter New York with B non-immigrant visas. There are two different types of B visas used by people who aren’t planning on moving to the United States permanently. The B-1 visa can be used by professionals visiting the country to temporarily participate in business activities. The B-2 visa can be used by tourists who plan to travel in the country for a short time or people who are visiting friends and family.
Business visitors using a B-1 visa must be going to the United States to participate in business activities related to their profession in a foreign country. They cannot be employed by a U.S. company in that foreign country. According to the Department of State’s Foreign Affairs Manual, foreign nationals with a B-1 visa must maintain an unabandoned foreign residence, demonstrate strong ties to their home country, and must present specific and realistic plans for their visit.
Foreign nationals from certain countries may be able to get into the United States temporarily for business or pleasure through the Visa Waiver Pilot Program. This program allows the visitor to enter the country for a maximum of 90 days. If they need or wish to stay longer, they must obtain a new visa which can be a particularly difficult process. Denials can appear to be arbitrary and subjective, and there is no real practical way to appeal the decision.
Foreign nationals seeking to enter the United States might benefit from the advice and counsel of an attorney who practices business immigration law. These lawyers may be able to help their clients arrange the appropriate documents and present their cases in front of immigration officials in the most favorable light possible. While obtaining a B-1 or B-2 visa is not guaranteed, representation might make the process easier.