B-2 VISA/ STATUS – TEMPORARY VISITORS FOR PLEASURE
The B-2 visa is also known as the “Tourist” visa. This visa applies to citizens of foreign countries, who wish to visit the United States for a temporary visit for pleasure, medical treatment, or tourism purposes.
This is issued to individuals wishing to enter the U.S. for touring, amusement, visit with friends or relatives, rest, medical treatment, and activities of a social or service nature. This may be issued in either single entry or multiple entry formats. In addition, this visa may also be issued for a limited time frame or on an indefinite basis. This may also be used to enter the U.S for certain types of study. If you are traveling to the United States for tourism and at the same time you want to take a short course of study, then that is taken as recreational and not for credit towards a degree. The course must also be less than 18 hours per week. Students must also check with the school or program they wish to attend and with the US consular officer in their home country to determine if they are definitely able to use a tourist visa for their specific school or program.
Please Note: This visa will only be issued to applicants who can demonstrate the financial resources that would accommodate round trip travel to and from the United States as well as payment of all living expenses during the temporary visit. If you are the individual with a B-2 status, you are not allowed to engage in unauthorized employment in the United States and must only engage in legitimate activities. Moreover, you must satisfy the consular officer that you will return abroad upon your completion of your temporary visit for pleasure.
Who Would Need A B-2 Visa? Consider The Following:
- Individuals who wish to come to the U.S. as tourists;
- Individuals who wish to visit friends and relatives in the U.S. for a short time;
- Individuals who need to come to the U.S. for medical treatment;
- Foreign nationals who are coming to the U.S. to marry a U.S. citizen or Green Card holder, upon establishing with the consular official and the USCIS that after the marriage, individuals will depart from the U.S., even though intending ultimately to immigrate;
- Amateur athletes, musicians etc. Who will participate in their respective activities in the U.S without any compensation;
- Individuals coming to the U.S. to participate in conventions organized by social organizations;
- Dependents of foreign national members of the U.S. armed forces temporarily assigned duty in the U.S.;
- Dependents of crew members (D visa holders) or B-1 visa holders solely to accompany the principal foreign national, or dependents of nonimmigrants for which no derivative classification is available. For example, the elderly parent of an E visa holder; and
- Individuals who wish to enter the U.S. to apply for special naturalization benefits on the basis of U.S. military service.
The Application Process Includes The Following:
- A digital photograph is required for while applying for a U.S. visitor visa. The digital photograph must meet the following requirements: The digital photograph must be a square, minimum dimensions must be 600 pixels by 600 pixels, maximum dimensions must be 1200 pixels by 1200 pixels, image must be in color (24 bits per pixel), image must be in the JPEG format (.jpg or .jpeg file extension), file size of the image must be less than or equal to 240 kilobytes;
- Complete the Form DS-160. This can be done online. After successfully completing the application, you will receive a confirmation with a 10-digit bar code. Take a printout of this page. This will be needed for setting up your visa interview appointment. It is OK for anyone to complete the application for you. You must check and verify the information for its correctness;
- Pay the visa application fee in the amount of $140 or its equipment in your home country currency. Check with your nearest U.S. embassy/consulate for details;
- Setup a Visa Interview Appointment. Depending on which foreign country you live in or applying from, the process of taking Visa appointment may vary. You may take appointment over the phone, over the email or internet. Please check with your nearest US consulate for specific procedure for taking appointment and scheduling your interview. Schedule an appointment with your consulate or embassy much in advance of your planned travel date as wait times can be long in some countries and consulate; and
- Attend the interview. Each visa applicant except minors are required to appear in person for an interview. You will be required to appear for a visa interview at applicable U.S. consulate where you have applied for your U.S. visa application.
Supporting Documents That May Be Required During The Interview:
The basic criteria for a tourist visa is to demonstrate that upon the completion of travel to the United States, you will return to your country. The following documents can be helpful and recommended:
- Bank records indicating that you have monies/assets in your home country;
- Proof of funds ( Bank statements, copy of passbook, Tax returns) that demonstrate your ability to support your trip;
- Evidence of real estate ties to your home country. If you own a house, bring a copy of the deed; and
- Any other evidence that can support ties to the home country.
Additional Documents may likewise be required to establish if you are qualified. For example, additional documents may include evidence of:
- The purpose of your trip to the U.S.
- Your ability to pay all the cost of the trip
- Your intent to depart the U.S. after your trip
Visitors are not permitted to work in the U.S. There is also no guarantee that a tourist visa will be issued to the applicants; thus, it is best advised to not make final travels plans or to buy a ticket before a visa is finally issued. Upon issuance of a visa, it is considered valid until its expiration date; or until cancelled or revoked. With this, a valid visa remains valid even if your passport expires.
Important to Note:
- Carry all Originals for the interview. Except the visa fee, most of the other documents will be given back after the interview.
- Visa applicants must qualify on the basis of the applicant’s residence and ties in his/her country of citizenship rather than assurances from U.S. family and friends. More so, a letter of invitation or Affidavit of Support is not needed for a tourist visa.
- In the event you are granted the visa, initially, the period of stay is one month with six months being the maximum period. But to those who want to extend their stay are granted for up to six months and maximum amount of time permitted on one trip is one year.
- Spouses and children are not eligible to obtain a dependent visa. Each of them must apply independently for a B-1 visa and must follow the visa regulations.
You Need an Immigration Attorney for your B2 Visa
Obtaining a visa could be a tedious process. From the bureaucratic requirements to documentations; fees and interviews– you need an expert legal assistance to go through the process.
At The Gambacorta Law Office, our goal is to help you through your visa application. We help you obtain the visa you need with our expert immigration assistance. Having an immigration expert working for you means you do not have to put in as much effort in your application– we are here with you every step of the way.
We know the process by heart. Having assisted countless of clients with their immigration-related issues and applications; we have the right set of experience and expertise to effectively and efficiently assist you with your visa application.
Get in touch with us today to know more about how we can help you with your visa application.